How Long Will It Take

“How long will it take?” they ask.

That’s often the question as one is working through their issues of limiting beliefs, fears, emotional reactions, or sabotaging behaviors.  Always the question, “How long will it take?”

It will take a certain number of hours.  You can put those hours in early and be done sooner, or you can do just a few minutes a day of change work and have it take many years.

It’s like learning to read, dance, fly an airplane, or play a musical instrument.  All of these things will take a certain number of hours before you reach a level.  If you want to go further and master more emotional skills and more of your beliefs, it will take more hours.  The critical way to measure how long it will take is by how many hours you spend practicing, not the days or weeks of the process.  If it takes 100 hours to break through a set of limiting beliefs you can do it in 5 weeks, or you can do it in 5 years.   Either way it will take you the same number of hours.

So to answer the question about, “How long will it take before I see the changes I want?”

The answer is a certain number of hours.

This is an excerpt.  Full post at How long will it take? 

 

 

Cleaning House and Cleaning Your Mind

It seems we spend more time cleaning our house than cleaning up our mind.  It’s nice to come home to a clean house.  But you don’t spend all your time there.  You spend a lot more time with your own mind than you do your house.  It makes sense then that you would spend some time making it a nice and enjoyable place to be.

For practical steps and exercises on cleaning up the fear based beliefs in your mind do the exercises in the Self Mastery course.

Cleaning Your House and Cleaning Your Mind

 

Making Personal changes

How do make personal changes in your life?

Sometimes making changes in your beliefs, emotions, relationships, and elsewhere in your life is counter-intuitive.

When you are riding a bicycle,,, how do you turn the bike to the right?   You turn the handlebars to the left.    How do you change the negative thoughts in your head?   We’ll maybe you get the best results in a similar way.  Don’t try to push more positive ones on top of them.  Sometimes when you do you end up going in a negative direction.

Turning the handlebars to the right in order to turn the bike to the right makes logical sense if you aren’t aware of the other factors like the gyroscopic effect of precession.   Don’t know what you are doing when it comes to changing your beliefs or emotional reactions and you are likely to end up goring in the wrong direction.

The Self Mastery Course can help steer you in the right direction.  Some of the things might seem counter-intuitive, but they will make more sense when you have more awareness of how belief systems operate.

Originally posted at Making Personal Changes

ToltecSpirit.com, a resource for living by the Four Agreements.

 

Free Your Mind

The challenge is not to free your mind.

The challenge is to free your self from your mind.

 

This post by Gary van Warmerdam at http://www.toltecspirit.com/2010/02/free-your-mind/

Where you can find Wisdom of the Four Agreements for Spiritual Warriors

For practical steps and exercises to inventory and change your own beliefs/agreements there are exercises in the Self Mastery course.

Four Agreements Companion Book

A question from a subscriber to my on line course in Self Mastery,,,

Hello Gary,

I started reading The Four Agreements Companion Book yesterday and noticed that it had exercises like your Self Mastery program.  The first exercise in the book was dealing with image of perfection but I’m still about ten sessions away from your Image of Perfection session.

I am aware that the sessions in your program are in an order for a purpose, so I wasn’t sure if it would be okay to continue reading the book or not.

Should I… continue reading the book and do the book exercises with your program? or stop reading the book until I finish your program?

Thanks for your time,

Curious

Hi Curious,

The Four Agreements Companion book is great and I recommend that you read it.  However most people I’ve talked to that have attempted the exercises have gotten overwhelmed.   They see so much of their belief system so fast without first having control over their attention that they slip into a victim point of view.  That induces a feeling of overwhelm, powerlessness, and then hopelessness.   Then their inner judge kicks in and berates them for failing.   They lose motivation and close the book,,, stop the exercises…  defeated.   They end up feeling worse than when they started.

So that’s one of the reasons why I don’t start with the  Image of Perfection beliefs.  It’s also why I have people develop some other skills over their attention and beliefs before trying to change their whole belief system.  It’s like eating beef.  It’s much easier to do one bite at a time so you don’t get crushed by the whole animal.

By all means read the Four Agreements Companion Book.  But, I’d suggest doing the exercises in the Self Mastery before starting the exercises in the book.  And if you want to challenge and dissolve your Image of Perfection beliefs, (which is a necessary step to eliminating self judgments) then I suggest the using the steps in the Advanced Series of the Self Mastery program instead of the Four Agreements Companion book approach.   In the Advanced Series I not only walk you through changing the Image of Perfection beliefs, but also walk you through the different issues of resistance that come up to letting these go.

After that, you’ll be better prepared to do the exercises suggested  in the Four Agreements Companion book.

Hope that helps,

Gary

Original post at ToltecSpirit.com a Four Agreements resource for Spiritual Warriors
http://www.toltecspirit.com/2009/12/four-agreements-companion-book/

Nobody is Perfect

Sometimes you will  hear people say, “Nobody is Perfect.”

Generally they include themselves in this category of not being perfect.
It’s an odd kind of self judgment.

It’s an odd kind of self judgment based on this idea of perfection.  However, there’s nobody in this category of “Perfection.”    And if perfection is an empty group then “perfection” doesn’t really exist.

The consequences of that is that “imperfection” doesn’t exist. Then there is no one that is imperfect either.  Including you.

Saying that you aren’t perfect is like saying that Tuesday is not tall enough.   “Not tall enough” does’t exist as a category for Tuesdays.   Then the category “Too Tall” doesn’t exist eigher.   The categories don’t apply.

So applying the category descriptions of “perfect” and “imperfect” to your self, and other people, doesn’t make much sense.

This post originally published at  www.ToltecSpirit.com  a blog about the Four Agreements.

For practical exercises in being Impeccable and Not Taking things personally listen to the audio sessions in the Self Mastery program.

The Challenge of a Spiritual Warrior

The challenge of the spiritual warrior is daunting.

A recent email from a client working his way through an emotionally challenging divorce caused me to share with him something about the challenge of a spiritual warrior.   In his breakup he is often overwhelmed with anger, sadness and frustration.  Outbursts still happen as he does not yet have control over his attention.   My reply:

It is a war,,, that’s why we call it being a Warrior.

In the beginning we will lose most, or almost all of the day to day, moment to moment battles for our attention.  In a way that is to be expected.  The benefit of understanding this is that you will not beat your self up when you fall into a story of drama, anger, or sadness etc.   The danger of telling you this is that your judge and victim in your belief system might distort the challenge into being so hard and convince you to not even try.

What will you do with the information that this is a challenge?  What will the judge and victim of your parasite do with the same information?

It is a risk to share this with you, and a risk to keep it from you.

My advice… do not measure the progress of your war by the results of a single moment, or even one day.

God Speed

Some of the bet guidance I can give can be found in the free audio and Self Mastery exercises at PathwayToHappiness.com The program is derived from my personal study with don Miguel Ruiz and the principles of the Four Agreements.

The Four Agreements – Why is it so Hard?

Living by the Four Agreements,,, why is it so hard?

We read the book the Four Agreements and feel better by the simple clarity it presents.  It tells us something about our self, other people, and the world that we have always known, but not been able to put into words.  With that clarity we have a sense of hope and excitement about changing our life and our relationships.  It is possible to end the drama of emotional suffering and be happy.

We take the next step and adopt the four agreements as principles and practices that we continually live by.  We are excited about the possibility, but then the reality sets in. Living our lives by the Four Agreements is challenging.  It can even appear impossible.  Why is it so hard when they are so simple?

We Make Endless Assumptions

It is because we have been practicing doing the exact opposite for almost our entire life.  From the time we were 2 or 3 years old we have been making assumptions.  We do it so continually we aren’t even aware how automatically we do it so often.

We Take Everything Personally

We also assume that we are the center of the world.  We assume that people do things because of us.   People react to what we say or do and we think it is about us. We aren’t aware that they have their own beliefs and interpretations that cause them to react.  This assumption blinds us to personalize everything to our own point of view.  We have done this for years and practiced it until we do it automatically.  We have become masters of taking things personally.

We don’t believe we do our best.

The judge in our mind has been hard at work telling us what to do for years.  It has been a constant reminder of what we should and shouldn’t do.  In our child hood we learned to follow it as a god like authority in our life.  We wouldn’t dare question what it tells us we should be.  Because our obedience to that inner judge we never feel like we are doing our best.

Living by the Four Agreements is a Life Changing Commitment

All of this, making assumptions, interpreting everything from our own personal point of view, and living by the voice of the inner judge is the exact opposite of the Four Agreements.  And we have been doing it for years.  Practicing it every day for years,,, the exact opposite of the Four Agreements.

When you decide to adopt the Four Agreements you are changing the course of so many of the habits of your life.  You will not make these changes in one day, or even one week.  However, if you work at it over time, you can make extraordinary changes in your life.

If you decide to adopt the Four Agreements as a means to change your relationships and your life, don’t do it for a day or a week.  Decide to do it a little bit each day for a year.  Then see how much you have changed.  To attempt to measure your results in a week, or a month is to make a gross error assumption in the magnitude of your undertaking.
For practical exercises in implementing the Four Agreements take advantage of the free sessions in the Self Mastery Audio Program.

This post originally posted at The Four Agreements by Gary van Warmerdam

Self Mastery

Learning Self Mastery Skills takes Time

What does it take to learn the skills to master your attention, focusing your mind, beliefs, and your emotions?   These are all skills that lead to Self Mastery

In spite of what the inner judge expects, it will take some time.   How much time would you give your self to become good at playing a musical instrument?   Perhaps a year with hard work.  Even after that you would continue to improve on those skills for years afterwards.

The skills of mastering your mind and emotions deserves that same respect of time.

If this were just the knowledge that comes from reading or memorization then that would be a different matter.  But that isn’t the case.