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  • Debra Berry

Loving What Is


When I was leading seminars and workshops, I always started with a quote from Dave Ramsey. I won’t get the quote quite right, however it goes something like this:


“Everything I learned I learned from God and my grandmother.”


I would then explain to the participants, I was not sharing any original work or thoughts created by me. What I had to share with them simply came from some great teachers in my life.


Today, I would like to share with you one of the most profound teachers in my life, Byron Katie.


In 1986, “Katie” as she is best known, experienced what she calls “waking up to reality.” From this experience Katie created what she refers to as The Work.


The Work is simply four questions that when applied to a specific situation helps us identify it in a different light and reframe it.


In her book, Loving What Is, Katie invites us to:


“Judge your neighbor, Write it down.

Ask four questions, Turn it around.”


Many of us believe we have a feeling, then a thought about the feeling. Actually, the thought always comes first followed by the feeling, which is a reaction to the thought.


For example, you may be experiencing despair and sadness if you think, “He hurt me.”

Here are the four questions from The Work, that can help turn the thought around and give you some freedom and space for creating a different outcome:


  1. Is it true he hurt me? (If your answer is yes, continue to question 2. If your answer is no, skip to question 3.)

  2. Can you absolutely know it’s true he hurt me?

  3. How do you react when you think the thought, he hurt me?

  4. Who would you be without the thought he hurt me? (or maybe who would you be without the story he hurt me?)


Once you answer the question you can turn the thought around. The turnarounds are an opportunity to consider the opposite of what you believe to be true. For example:


  1. Turn it to yourself. “I hurt myself.”

  2. Turn it around to the other. “”I hurt him.”

  3. Turn it around to the opposite. “He didn’t hurt me.”

This is a simple explanation of The Work. For more information and examples you can visit, https://thework.com or read her book Loving What Is available on Amazon


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