Great! You have started to notice when your pesky inner critic starts yammering away. That is the first step. Now you need to do something to put up a baffle to absorb the sound, so you can pay attention to what is real and not what is an unproductive distraction, so you can get more of the right things done. Today. Not some magical day in the future when you have done enough to stun your inner critic into silence.
Creating change takes time practice and a long frank look in the mirror to simply notice what holds us back and the role that negative self-talk plays in our lives. This will drive you inner critic batty because you are not responding. Now you also have a sense of the myths your self-sabotaging inner critic is whispering. You have choices to make:
- Believe the myths and proceed of normal
- Do something different: what other narrative could you use in place of the myth? What other reaction or steps could you take?
- Not doing anything at all. You just move on to something else.
Make Head or Tails of Your Inner Critic’s Yammering
How do I make sense of this yammering and what might be true? Good question. You need to be able to tell the difference so you can decide on the appropriate course of action.
Starting by making sure you know your habits. This is a blindingly obvious place to start. Your habits are some ingrained sometimes its easy to make assumptions about how you act or react. When in fact what happens, what you think, what you do, can be unexpected and part of what feeds the inner critic. Don’t make any assumptions. Take the time to really know your normal response to situations and feelings to situations. And to people.
Put Up the Sound Baffle To Quiet Your Inner Critic
I can give you some concrete approaches that work for to quiet your inner critic, but there is an art to applying the two I have explored in this miniseries. That art of learning how to use these to quiet your own inner critic and the next key in stopping the yammering. Or at least not falling into an old routine of being bewitched by it so you get stuck.
There are some common scenarios where getting stuck happens.
- Your inner critic maybe so crafty and quiet it is you are straining to hear exactly what it’s saying. Or to even notice when it is yammering away, until it’s too late.
- Your habits that served you well for many years may be so reflexive, it is hard to see exactly what they are.
- You might be clear about who is yammering, exactly what they are saying and even now your habits, but can’t seem to quiet that inner critic.
If you come up against any of these common stumbling blocks I can help. I want to help.
Busy professionals spend an enormous amount of time in their heads at work, at home, thinking about the next immediate task, solving problems, sorting through the deluge of media, that any extra noise is mental clutter you can’t afford. What I have seen is a learning a few skills can help you turn down the volume, quieting your inner critic. Once you have quieted the mental noise, and you can focus on what is fundamentally important, the you can thoughtfully consider how you spend your time, and get more of the right things done.
If I can help you please contact me for a complementary 30 minute Discovery Session. During which we will do three things: 1) get clear about what you really want that you inner critic is getting in the way of; 2) explore how your inner critic and anything else is getting in the way, and; 3) discuss some next steps.