What is it Gets in the Way of Change? (R7)


Talking in the head.

The things we say to our many selves… The things our many ‘I’s gang up on us to say inside our head, behind our back—what’s called Internal Considering in The Fourth Way.

From time to time I find it useful to consult the following list, which I have concocted for myself over the last 25 years, of things that have gone on in my head in a variety of different contexts stopping me from getting what I wanted in life.

If you Think You’re Immune, You’re Just Kidding Yourself

And that’s the worst trap of all.

Unless I’m in my silent place there’s always some voice or other going on in my head—and even when I’m in my silent place there’s often a voice that says, “Aren’t I glad/good/etc to be in my silent place… How superior I am to anybody who doesn’t have a silent place to go to…”

Where’s your silent place?

Even if I thought I had no voice in my head I’d have to start it up in order to check: “I wonder if I’ve got a voice in my head right now…? Damn, I’m such a failure and they’re all so good at it…”

Here’s my list

  • I’m not to blame—it’s their fault / I can’t be bothered with them
  • It’s always been like this…
  • I don’t deserve to be treated thus… I’ll get even somehow…
  • Am I of no account then?
  • They don’t know what they’re talking about…
  • I know far more than they do and I’ll prove it to everybody…
  • It’s no use trying to tell them anything… They won’t listen…
  • When they hear what I’m suggesting, they’ll think I’m great…
  • Wouldn’t you feel just like me if… ?
  • You don’t understand what I have to put up with…
  • You have everything you want…
  • You wouldn’t understand—nobody ever does…
  • Nobody likes me…
  • I want people to like me…
  • I don’t care if they like me or not…
  • I can’t help what I do…
  • I can’t help what anybody else thinks…
  • I’m not as good as you are…
  • I’m better than other people but nobody ever acknowledges it…


What Does Your Internal Voice Do for You?

  • People don’t give us enough…
  • People don’t pay us enough…
  • People don’t appreciate us…
  • People don’t value us…People are not sufficiently polite & courteous…
  • Feeling cheated / ignored / hard done by…
  • Imagining that you are above all that nonsense…
  • Desire to be noticed…
  • Desire not to be noticed…
  • Indignation over perceived injustices…
  • Quitting the fray or taking your bat & ball home…
  • Irritation with the weather—the weather owes us better than this…
  • Feeling that things ought to be different from how they are…
  • Requirements that people should act in certain ways & not in others…

What I find is that, when I’m on Top Form, but only then, there’s an ‘I’ that catches itself about to say something that sounds like one of the above examples of Internal Considering—a mixture of the attitudes called self-justifying and making accounts.

Catching yourself  can serve as a valuable cue to arrest the ‘I’ that’s about to descend into the Pit.

I have to remember myself to do this. I have to be in my silent place.

So, where is your silent place?

When I forget myself… “Well, I can’t help it—they’re all so much better than I am…”

When I begin (and continue) to observe all this going on in me… over time, something else becomes possible—maybe the beginnings of external considering.

And that’s another story…

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