Book Review | Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Loving What Is by Byron Katie sitting on a Coffee Table
Photo Credit: AccidentallyRetired.com

Highlights and Quotes from Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Loving What Is by Byron Katie was a book that I had heard a lot about for a while, and had sat buried on an Amazon wish list. I didn’t feel that I had a big problem or mental hurdle to tackle, and so it sat on my list for quite some time.

But then I ran into some personal issues surrounding one of my siblings this year. A few arguments, angry texts, phone calls, etc. and before you know it I found myself in a position where I needed some help in reframing my feelings.

And this is where Loving What Is really shines. The book involves many example conversations that Byron Katie has with a live audience, and her work in helping people to reframe their issues with a series of four questions that she calls “The Work” or in some cases “inquiry.”

We are talking anything from divorce to money, from family drama to the death of a loved one. Byon is curt and straight to the point. She does not BS. Ultimately, she sees reality for what it is, and accepts all that comes her way positive or negative.

As you inquire into issues and turn your judgements around, you come to see that every perceived problem appearing “out there” is really nothing more than a misperception within your own thinking.

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

I can’t say that this book transformed my life, but it has helped me to reframe some of my own issues and see the bigger picture. Often times, when I do “The Work” on a thought or problem I eventually come to relax and let my guard down.

Many times an issue that I have with someone else turned out to be an issue with myself and/or my own thinking.

I recommend this book for anyone struggling with interpersonal relations, money problems, divorce or any other number of personal issues. The biggest issue with things we are dealing with are our very own thoughts.

Loving What Is will address your thoughts around any issue you do inquiry on.

And for me, continuing to use inquiry in my everyday life will help me to deal with the ups and downs a bit better – Hopefully becoming a better person in the process.

AR’s Book Score: 7 out of 10

Key book highlights from Loving What Is

The book is ultimately a combination of breaking down “The Work” and real-life conversations that Byron Katie is having with her audience.

Her commentary around the conversations and how to properly interpret and do “The Work” at home round it into a quick, but solid read.

What is “The Work?”

The Work is four questions that you can address to any thought/situation/problem.

I will not go too into depth here, as this is what the book is about, but at least try to lay out an example:

Example: “I’m angry at my uncle Ralph for giving me some bum tips on the stock market that cost me all my money”

From there, you would then address with “The Work:”

  1. Is it true?
  2. Can I absolutely know that it’s true?
  3. How do I react, what happens, when I believe that thought?
  4. Who would I be without the thought? and Turn it around. Then find at least three specific, genuine examples of how each turnaround is true in your life.

Byron also has some other examples of inquiry that you can do and a Worksheet that she goes through to help uncover all of your issues. She says,

The more you do The Work, the more uncensored you become and the pettier you like to get, because it becomes hard to find something that will upset you. Eventually you can’t find a problem. That’s an experience I hear from thousands of people”

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Eventually as you begin to really examine all of your thoughts and start to realize that many of your stresses are rooted in your own thinking:

As you inquire into issues and turn your judgements around, you come to see that every perceived problem appearing “out there” is really nothing more than a misperception within your own thinking”

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

The book has plenty of examples that will or will not be relevant to any situations currently going on in your life, but she covers the most common:

  • Couples
  • Family Life
  • Divorce
  • Loss of a loved one
  • Money
  • Self Judgements
  • Friends
  • Sex
  • And More!

Even if it makes you feel just a bit better, and helps you to reframe some of your thoughts it’s worth the read.

Best quotes from Loving What Is

If you are living your life and I am mentally living your life, who is here living mine? We’re both over there. Being mentally in your business keeps me from being present in my own. I am separate from myself, wondering why my life doesn’t work.

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Every story is a variation on a single theme: This shouldn’t be happening. I shouldn’t have to experience this. God is unjust. Life isn’t fair.

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

If you live with the uninvestigated thought “I need my money to be safe and secure,” you’re living in a hopeless state of mind. Banks fail. Stock markets crash. Currencies deflate. People lie, bend contracts, and break their promises. In this confused state of mind, you can make millions of dollars and still be insecure and unhappy”

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Happiness is a clear mind. A clear and sane mind knows how to live, how to work, what emails to send, what phone calls to make, and what to do to create what it wants without fear.

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

You don’t ever need more money than you have. When you understand this, you begin to realize that you already have all the security you wanted money to give you in the first place. It’s a lot easier to make money from this position.

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Sometimes replacing the word “I” with “my thinking” will bring a realization. “I am a failure” becomes “My thinking is a failure, especially about myself. [..] It’s the thought that is painful, not your life.”

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Do you want to be right more than you want to know the truth?”

Loving What Is by Byron Katie

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1 comment

  1. I like it. Many people fail to understand that it is their choice when they choose to judge others, feel jealous, feel bad, or feel happy.

    Sure, there may be minor annoyances like traffic throughout the day. However, at the end of the day, it’s still your choice to be bothered by that or just move on like nothing happened.

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