What is The Work™ of Byron Katie?

Time Magazine refers to Byron Katie as an innovator for this millennium.

The Work™ is a simple yet powerful process of inquiry that teaches you to identify and question  thoughts that cause all the suffering in the world. It’s a way to understand what’s hurting you,  and to address your problems with clarity.

Byron Katie had an experience in 1986 that she calls “waking up to reality.”

“I discovered that when I believed my thoughts, I suffered, but that when I didn’t believe them, I didn’t suffer, and that this is true for every human being. Freedom is as simple as that. I found that suffering is optional. I found a joy within me that has never disappeared, not for a single moment. That joy is in everyone, always.”

The Four Questions came out of her direct experience with ending her own suffering and invitations from others to share what she had discovered. Quickly realizing that sharing her own insights did not give others the same freedom she had found, the four questions came as a tool to help others free themselves from their own stressful beliefs about the world around them.

The Four Questions are now known as The Work™ of Byron Katie.

They are:

  1. Is it true?
  2. Can you absolutely know it’s true?
  3. How do you react when you believe the thought?
  4. Who would you be without the thought?

Then, turn the statement around and find examples of how the opposite might actually be true.

By answering these questions for ourselves we can experience reality without our projections and interpretations.

It’s not the questions that make The Work™ so powerful.

It’s the answers that we discover that bring us insight and freedom. Reality is always kinder than our thoughts.

People who do The Work™ as an ongoing practice report life-changing results.

  • Alleviation of depression: Find resolution, and even happiness, in situations that were once debilitating.
  • Decreased stress: Learn how to live with less anxiety or fear.
  • Improved relationships: Experience deeper connection and intimacy with your partner, your parents, your children, your friends, and yourself.
  • Reduced anger: Understand what makes you angry and resentful, and become less reactive, less often, with less intensity.
  • Increased mental clarity: Live and work more intelligently and effectively, with integrity.
  • More energy: Experience a new sense of ongoing vigor and well-being.
  • More peace: Discover how to become “a lover of what is.”
Find more information on the official websites of The Work™ of Byron Katie:

www.thework.com

www.instituteforthework.com

www.byronkatie.com

For more information, read The Little Book– excerpts from Loving What Is

See The Work™ in Action (video clips of Katie) here.

Read some examples of The Work™ in action here.

Other Resources.