There's a transformative energy in the air this month. It feels like we're leaving behind one version of ourselves, on the verge of stepping into someone new. There are few people who support transformation quite like Martha Beck. Her new book, The Way of Integrity, is a guide to the future self that has been whispering to you. Both gentle and powerful, this is the book I most recommend to those of you who can feel yourselves outgrowing what's in front of you. While you can of course order on Amazon, consider buying from Bookshop to support independent bookstores. Here are some quotes from the book to give you a sense of what's to come:
Listen: the problem isn't how hard you're working, it's that you're working on things that aren't right for you. Your goals and motivations aren't harmonizing with your deepest truth. They didn't come from your own natural inclinations. They came from the two forces that drive us all off our true paths: trauma and socialization.
When you experience unity of intention, fascination, and purpose, you live like a bloodhound on a scent, joyfully doing what feels truest in each moment. Your daily work, whether it’s writing computer code, gardening, or building houses, is so absorbing that at the end of the day you don’t really want to stop. But when you do, you enjoy hanging out with loved ones so much, and sleep is so delicious you can’t imagine anything sweeter. And when you wake up the next morning, the day ahead seems so enticing you practically bound out of bed.
You see, attacks cause emotional suffering only if a part of us believes them.
If it makes sense to you that suffering can come from your thinking, you're ready for another concept- the one crucial insight that can free you from hell. Here is is: your thoughts, even thoughts you absolutely believe, may not always be true.
To accept your own mistreatment is to participate in a lie.
And if the whine and sting of purposelessness isn’t enough to shake us out of our sleepwalking, our subconscious minds will up the ante. They’ll summon the megafauna, the mental wild beasts we call mood states.