Do I need your love?

2013 - Do I need your love?

Curl up with this recommended reading “I Need Your Love – Is That True?” by Byron Katie.

I’ve been an avid reader for a very long time. In fact, my parents have pictures of me falling asleep reading at the ripe old age of five and a half. In my adult life, I ambitiously resolved to read a book a week during my 29th year. It never happened, three and a half books in a month was all I could muster.

While living in Costa Rica, I didn’t have a television which left a lot of time for reading. During my time there, I was given an inspiring gift by a dear friend (thanks, Caroline!) in the form of a book by the awesome Byron Katie. The name of the book is “I Need Your Love – Is That True?” And, it is not an understatement to say that this book changed my life.

It was the first time I considered that the thoughts I had might not actually be true. Yes, that’s right. That I might be choosing to believe thoughts that were actually out of alignment with reality, that what was causing me suffering might instead be rooted in my own distorted perceptions. In yoga, we talk about this idea in the form of maya; our ignorance that warps our awareness. Our true nature is unseen until we lift the veil of the maya.

But, back to Costa Rica for a moment.

I had just begun practicing yoga, I was living far away from family and my support system in a brand new culture in a foreign country. If there is such a thing, it was the perfect time for me to read this book. I was very open to new possibilities of all sorts, shapes and forms.

In American culture, we are taught to seek outside approval, we learn how to attract and impress others. Buy this; wear that; say this; travel here. Frankly, it all gets a bit exhausting…all this ego-feeding and approval seeking. Katie’s advice flies in the face of many things that I had, up until that point, believed. Through doing what she calls “the work” in various areas of my life, I learned the fine art of not only critical thinking but also critical feeling.

Ultimately, it empowered me to be in charge of my own happiness, to stop trying to seek that outside consent for what I am doing. Instead of doing something with an expectation of a return on investment, doing things because I want to do them.

Now, does this mean that things are perfect in my life, that it’s all rainbows and butterflies and puppy dogs? No. Certainly not.

Ongoing happiness is a thing for which we have to constantly work. Or, in the words of Lionel Shriver, “The good life doesn’t knock at the door. Joy is a job.” Joy and happiness do not magically happen overnite after reading the “perfect” book at the “perfect” time. But this book has aided me in finding so much enjoyment in life, and in cultivating a spirit of blissful detachment.

If you’re looking for a 2013 book to add to your reading list, look no further!

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About the JOY Coach

Elizabeth Grepp

Elizabeth Grepp is a three time Cleveland, Ohio boomeranger and Midwestern gal through and through.

She is a yoga teacher, kindness advocate, wannabe vegan foodie, weekend warrior, aspiring photographer and writer as well as vintage enthusiast.

Her first introduction to yoga came while living in San Jose, Costa Rica. Since then, she has not met a yoga that she doesn't like. She takes inspiration from various types of yoga including Ashtanga, Jivamukti as well as Anusara with dashes of Baptiste and Kundalini. Most weekends she can be found teaching happy hour yoga at The Studio Cleveland.

Elizabeth firmly believes in the power of a life of empowered awareness and the ability to live powerfully transformative life by bringing the yogic lifestyle off the mat and into the world.

You can follow her adventures on twitter with the handle @cleyogi or email her at cleyogi (at) gmail (dot) com!

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