Questioning An Unhappy Thought

Creative Commons License photo credit: AGENT82

Here's a sample of my use of The Work in dealing with the troubling thought,

“I am a failure because I don't market my business well.”

The first step towards clearing this negative & limiting thought was to recognize what I was believing so that I could question it; “I am a failure, is it true?”

I then wrote down all the evidence that supported that thought. And then I asked myself the following questions and wrote down the answers:
“Do I absolutely know that I am a failure who does not market my business successfully?”
“When I believe that thought how do I think, feel, and react to the world?”

My answers brought more questions, like, “Could there be other reasons, other than “I am a failure,” that inhibit my marketing?”

And I began to list other possibilities:

– Perhaps I am afraid. If so,”what am I believing that would create fear?”

– Perhaps I am unconsciously working to convince myself that I am a failure. “Might I be unconsciously collecting evidence for an old failure story?”

– Perhaps I don't WANT more business. “Could I be purposely avoiding more work?” Could it be that I am not motivated to promote?”

Or, and these thoughts were new,

– Perhaps it simply wasn't the right time to market! Perhaps I was following an inner urge that was prompting me to hold back on marketing because it's not the right time; perhaps there were other things that needed my attention more in that moment, perhaps I was being governed towards a more “balanced” life and so had not felt nudged to produce more business!”

It seemed important to realize that there were a number of possibilities for why I had not done much marketing; my inquiry gave me the chance to allow thoughts to surface that had nothing to do with being “a failure.”

I found it interesting that I had selected the most negative thought to believe of the options available, “I am a failure.” It was especially instructive when I realized that any of the reasons named above might be at least as true as believing the more painful story, “I don't market my business well because I am a failure!”

After investigating this belief about failure, I found myself
able to better accept the pace at which my business was unfolding. I began to find peace with it and as a result, a marketing plan that has felt appropriate, a “right fit” for my business has unfolded. The slower unfolding has allowed me to come into an integrity with the way my business is promoted so that the marketing is congruent with what I teach. In other words, I aligned with reality by adopting thoughts that promote trust in the way things are, rather than believing thoughts that keep me in resistance to it.

Hope this example helps you question your own thoughts.

Blessings, Lynne

4 Responses

  1. Hi Tracy, it is a common idea that we shouldn’t judge, but do you know anyone who doesn’t? Truly? Humans ARE judgmental, that’s just the way it is.
    Because this is true, there must be a design, function or reason why we judge (ourselves & others). I think of judgment as being a finger pointing to a limiting belief about ourselves.
    Write down your judgment of self and ask, “What belief about myself does this judgment reflect? Then take that belief through the four questions and turn around that Katie teaches. Best of luck in your journey to self acceptance.

  2. I have been trying to follow thorough my negative thoughts using the work guidelines.It is true that most of my insecurities are built on my past experiences and past judgments of myself.I am still trying to follow through and learning more about myself.
    Thanks for this insight.

  3. Wow… this was very well-articulated!
    I have had the same thoughts about my own business. Reading through your personal interrogation on the subject, I took myself through the same questions with similar result 🙂

    Thanks for bringing clarity and focus. Yes, your example did help!

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