Mar 11

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Last year I started learning about the three principles, or what Michael Neill calls the “inside out understanding of the world”. It was at one of Michael’s Supercoach events in London last year that I really began to get my teeth in to this new understanding, which has been life changing.

“Life changing?” a dear friend asked me today. “How?”.

Well, I explained, on leaving that Supercoach event after three days of brain stretching revelations I felt as if a huge weight had been lifted from me.

I’d spent the previous five years practising techniques for keeping me ‘happy’ and ‘successful’. I was pretty good at it, but it was hard work. And when I wasn’t quite diligent enough to carry out my rituals (meditation/gratitude diary/state change/visualisation/communication technique/7 point plan for a happy/successful life/relationship/business and so on) I’d beat myself up for failing, and blame myself for not being happy.

What Michael and others showed me on those three days was that by simply having a better understanding of how we experience the world (for example what we tell ourselves about happiness/success/commitment and so on), we can more easily connect with our innate well-being without doing anything. The relief for me was the ‘without doing anything’. I was off the hook – no more to do lists, or feeling bad for dropping the ball in the constant task of keeping myself in a good place. This was a huge relief.

It was as if I’d been struggling with some complicated machinery for pushing giant boulders down a hill. I now realised that all I’d been doing was getting in the way. With absolutely no effort on my part I could just stand back and gravity would do the work for me.

It’s taken me the best part of a year to begin to properly get my head around the enormity of this paradigm shift, and I’m continuing with what’s likely to be a life-long mission to deepen my understanding.

My current flurry of revelation comes from the notion that whatever I’m feeling is a product of my thinking (and not of my external circumstance). Given this, there’s no longer any need to play the deferred gratification bargaining game: “Once I have this client/income/relationship milestone/certificate/new dress (*delete as applicable) I will be happy/fulfilled/peaceful”.

This old understanding of how things work is described in Michael Neill’s new book The Inside Out Revolution as “this poorly conceived mathematical equation:

Struggle + Stress + Sacrifice = Success = Happiness

or, to simplify it even further:

Unhappiness = Success = Happiness

which ultimately leaves us with the oxymoronic formula:

Unhappiness = Happiness”

When we let ourselves off the hook and realize this is barmy, things just work better. Here’s how Michael describes it:

“When we take the pressure off ourselves to produce results at any cost and instead rest in our innate well-being, enjoying our life, following our wisdom, and looking within for a deeper understanding of how it all works, things often seems to unfold more beautifully than we could ever have imagined. We start to notice all sorts of synchronicities and serendipities, and outcomes that may have eluded us for years begin to happen seemingly ‘all by themselves.’”

He’s right. As I continue to do nothing more than notice this new understanding playing out in my life, all sorts of wonderful stuff keeps turning up, with ease and without effort. And I have a great desire to share this with anyone who’s interested.

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