Love allows for appropriate short cuts

by Craig on August 26, 2011

So, we all have negative voices running around our heads.


I’ve been retraining mine, making them helpful instead of harmful. Asking these questions of each voice has worked miracles so far…

Where did you come from?
When is it that I hear you?
How do I feel when I hear you?
What do I do when I hear you?
What’s the opposite of this response?
Is there a kernel of truth to you?
If I would pick one, just one unavoidable fact that disproves you what would it be?
Knowing all of this, what would be a positive replacement for you?

It’s the final stretch of the Love War on the negative voices that hold us back.   It all began here … and the posty note strategery is explained here … and over to the right and down a bit on the sidebar, in the “Lots of Love” section is the whole history of the war.

I discovered, way back in week one of this Love War, as I paid close attention to every negative voice I heard, that I ended up with 49 voices – on 49 posty notes. And asking these questions to all 49 might take forever.

But I found a shortcut.
It makes things shorter by making the list of questions longer.

I heart a good paradox.

The question?

Which negative voices are you related to?

Here’s how it works.

Horses, like lemmings, and like us to some extent, heart herds…


…and herds follow leaders.

So far I’ve retrained three horses (a.k.a. negative voices) from my top 10.
Now I take these three horses (a.k.a. posty notes) and place them just outside of the main corral.
I ask the question, “Who are you related to?”
And I scan the herd, and the horses begin to line up naturally.

I discover that the negative voices come in families, tribes.

And like magic, the horses all migrate over and form nice straight lines underneath the lead horse.

I’ve discovered that if I deal with the big voices, not only do I make major headway with them, I make progress on all of their relatives.

I don’t have to take as long as I’ve taken on these top three voices with every single voice that I’ve got. Because the related horses share ancestry and traits. I know now that when I ask the questions of these other horses a lot of the answers will already have been revealed.

And some of them won’t have to be trained at all because they are nearly identical twins with another voice. And when one twin is dealt with – the other one gets trained vicariously.

I’ve now got some rearranging of posty notes to do…

and I’ve got my top ten negative voices…

and I bet I’ll find that of the top ten there will be 3-5 tribes…

and then most of the other 39 horses will line up behind them…

and I’ll have, maybe 5 sets of twins, maybe some triplets…

and I’ll have a few unique voices that won’t line up at all…

but the bottom line is that the job or retraining the negative voices just. got. easier.

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Cora August 26, 2011 at 9:52 am

Craig, I think I unconsciously found this shortcut, but didn’t really pay any attention to it. In taming that big guy, I did notice that a few of the others had kind of dropped out of sight, but I like your way of seeing that they “lined up” behind the big guy in charge. It doesn’t look like such a daunting job when we can pick the “top ten” and line up the others behind them. Thank you for pointing this out. You know, in working deeply with this, I do notice that ALL the horses, weak or strong, are a little nervous as I’m much more alert and aware of who they really are when they speak and they seem to know that. None of them are as bold as they used to be. They saw the big guy tamed with bridle and bit and saddle and they know what’s coming! Thanks for this. I’ll rearrage my horses this weekend.


Craig August 27, 2011 at 11:23 am

Cora, I did the same exact thing. If you look back in my early pictures of the love war wall – inside the corral is an orange posty note dash that links a couple of posty notes. The kernel of the idea was there – I just didn’t develop it. And now it’s developed. And I have a feeling – the top 10 won’t even have to be taken care of – I bet it’s more like the top five – then all the other horses will fall in line. I still think I’ll ask most of the horses the questions – except I’ll know the answers before I ask. Kind of like my mom did when she asked about missing cookies or doughnutsツ Bless you Cora.


A. August 26, 2011 at 11:02 pm

Craig, it’s kind of the old ‘take out the leader and the rest are easy’ thing, isn’t it….sort of? I love this shortcut!


Craig August 27, 2011 at 9:57 am

Yep – it kind of is – I heart the shortcut to – Cora chided me the other day for not coming up with it earlier to save her little bit of work ツ God bless you A.


Cindy August 28, 2011 at 9:31 am

Ah Craig, this is a wonderful counseling technique…it would work so well for anyone struggling with these voices. There are already many books out there on “the lies we believe”, but I believe personifying them as horses has a way of distancing a person from the pressure, and from the lie itself…

I know you are mainly doing this for yourself, but who knows???


Craig August 30, 2011 at 6:20 pm

first of all Cindy, I’m sorry for taking so long to reply – no excuses – just sorry (⌣˛⌣)

and I figured it was the counseling technique – and I learned the “horse” thing as I was writing a series over on the other blog – deep into Scripture – the series was about all of the uses of the word “works” in the Bible – works just always seems to have a negative connotation to it – so instead – I called them daisies ツ worked like a charm! And the horses thing works the same way. I heart the way you explained it – “a way of distancing a person from the pressure, and from the lie itself…”


am I doing this mainly for myself? I kinda don’t think so. I know other people – lots of other people who struggle with this – so it’s kind of for me AND anyone who shares the struggle. The times when I talk about my own voices – that’s because – well I’m all about the over-sharing now that I have a blog ツ thank you very much Cindy – and God bless and keep you.


Traveller August 28, 2011 at 10:07 am

I love it! I’ve just had a similar thing happen in seeking for answers to struggles and problems in my heart–a root problem that when dealt with, deals with a lot of the other problems.

I have a question about the “love war”–being new to your blog and all–and I have read some of the introductory posts that you link explaining things, but…What exactly is the connection between the negative voices and LOVE? I think way back you started the blog talking about I Cor. 13 .. “love is…” so… is it that these negative voices “hold us back” from receiving God’s love? or loving others? or … both… And, so then, once these voices are tamed you’ll/we’ll be free to love–receive and give? Is there a post where you explain how you realized these voices where what was hold us back? Thanks!


Craig August 28, 2011 at 8:28 pm

I’m heading to bed now – but I want to say THANK YOU – awesome questions!!!! I don’t want to give you a quick answer – without thought – and prayer. The questions are too good – and I’m not sure I’ve addressed them. I know the answers and I’ll put together a post – or two – and I’ll come to your site to tell you when it’s (or they) are up this week. Thank you. If I haven’t explored this in posts – then I haven’t done God’s love justice. God Bless you – and thank you!!


Katie August 28, 2011 at 7:43 pm

I think I did this unknowingly… when I would asked many of the same questions of myself in identifying issues while in counseling. And some of those questions were guided by the counselor. Now I identify so much faster than before and figure out what I am thinking and feeling easier. Although there are still times I stuff and hide from feelings and figuring them out.


Craig August 30, 2011 at 6:23 pm

Katie, first I’m sorry for taking so long to reply to your comment – lots of excuses – but they’re just excuses – and I’ll just say sorry. Sorry! ツAnyway, as a result of the questions – I am recognizing the voices – and as a result of knowing that there are actually a few main voices – and the rest of them branch off of the main ones – that’s helping too. I guess I’m being my own therapist ツ and I guess we will all – always “stuff and hide” – we are imperfect. Thank you Katie – thank you lots – and God bless and keep you.


Debbie August 30, 2011 at 8:35 am

Thank you for showing us this! Now we don’t have to listen to that voice that says, “you’ll never get these all tamed!” :) God bless you and your unique way of listening to Him and helping us!


Craig August 30, 2011 at 6:25 pm

Debbie, like I said – if I had to deal with all 49 of those stupid voices – I’d be here a long time. I’m glad I found this little secret about them – they have bloodlines – and share traits – and fall in line. I have learned how to do this Love War on the go. I’m glad I’ve gone through it – and I’m glad you’ve been here. God bless and keep you Debbie.


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