Sticks and Stones

The Desert of Arizona
Sunny 55 Degrees – 6:32 a.m.

Sticks and stones can break your bones but words can hurt you forever.

I’m speaking specifically about the words you speak to yourself.

It’s probably no surprise that each of us serves as our biggest critic.

That incessant voice inside your head that is constantly providing commentary about things you SHOULD be doing or COULD be doing better:

  • You should have charged more.
  • You should have charged less.
  • Are they mad at you?
  • What will they say about you to others?
  • Why can’t you get it together…ever?
  • Why are your clients out to get you?
  • Why aren’t more people paying attention to you? Why does it feel like you are invisible to your future clients?
  • Why isn’t X working for you when it seems to be working for everyone else?
  • Are you really cut out for this?

The question, really, is what to do about this voice. Do you just get used to it? Do you squash it through the brute force of your will? Do you listen to it and watch it take over? Do you allow it to exist and go forward in spite of it trying to cut you down?

I’ve probably tried all of these approaches. And none of them works forever.

As much as I’d like to answer this question for you, all I have is another question.

But it’s a good question. In fact, I think it’s THE question to ask to begin walking towards your solution for dealing with this eternal critic living inside your head.

So here it is:

What are you getting from this voice in your head? What is the benefit you are getting from this voice?

Now at first that might seem like a crazy question. In fact, I bet that voice is jumping up right now to defend its reason for being.

But I suggest you persist in your current line of questioning:

What are you getting from allowing this voice to continue?

In the interest of being the example, I’m happy to show you that I take my own medicine. So I’ll give you my answer. What do I get from allowing this voice?

I get focus. I get a KNOWN quantity that becomes a comfort zone I get used to. I get to AVOID the risk of truly stepping into my power and moving out through the world. I get to avoid rejection from others who might see the REAL me. I get to avoid criticism from others who might not “approve” of the REAL me. I get to just give all of that rejection to myself in a controlled environment so I don’t have to deal with it possibly coming from others.

But most of all, I get to feel like I am in control because I can just use up all my energy dealing with that voice and never really have to do anything risky in the world. I get to avoid the present moment and step out beyond time and space and just listen to that voice talk to me like a faithful friend. An abusive friend, but a truly faithful one! The longer I listen to that voice, the longer I can hide in a “safe place.”

Of course this is total B.S. of my own making.

No one is safe. Life is not safe. Breathing is not safe. You’ll never be “SAFE” or secure. So the moment you accept that, you can get on with things.

So now back to you:

You’re getting something from this voice. There’s some benefit there for you. And if you’re honest with yourself to spend some time getting your answer, that answer is going to change everything.

And then, from a true position of power, you can choose what you really want to do with your time here.

Your prospects, clients, customers, friends and family are waiting for you.