Your Inner Critic is a loud-mouthed bore who seems to have nothing better to do than tear you down. To beat you up. To keep you from doing, saying, and becoming what you are meant to do, say, and become.
He’s intent on convincing you to do more…or do better. He relentlessly reminds you of mistakes and shortcomings. He keeps a record of all the things that bother you most. And then he repeats them over…and over…and over. He capitalizes on all the times when you feel most vulnerable.
He’s a jerk.
But here’s the good news.
Your Inner Critic can be silenced.
You can do great work, share your art, lead with confidence, fight for your ideas, influence and engage your team, parent without second-guessing yourself, make decisions without guilt, and delegate effectively. I don’t know what you want to achieve – what result you are hoping for – but I do know that you can live a bigger life than you’re currently living.
If you want to get unstuck and to live that bigger, bolder, more successful life, then you need to defeat the enemy: Your Inner Critic.
Your Inner Critic is sneaky.
He tends to creep around…inserting himself where he’s not wanted…and butting himself into your innermost thoughts. He’s rude that way.
You can generally recognize your Inner Critic by the way he makes you feel.
Distracted. Disappointed. Depressed. Frustrated. Angry. Out-of-control. Irritated. Fearful. Doubtful.
When these emotions show up, your Inner Critic is never far away.
Here’s the interesting thing.
Between conversations, coaching sessions, and interviews with my colleagues, clients, business partners, and friends, I’ve discovered that everyone’s Inner Critic shows up a little differently. But there are some significant commonalities.
The Inner Critic (yours, mine, all of them) tends to “speak” to us in four specific ways. I call this the Four Voices of the Inner Critic. And though each person’s Inner Critic is unique, they all sound surprisingly similar. There are patterns in the words that he uses, the places he shows up, and the ways that he makes us feel.
(Note that you may hear one or two of these voices predominantly – OR if your Inner Critic is particularly nasty – you may hear all four!)
Want to know which voice you hear? AND how to defeat it?
Then make sure you sign up below to get a free copy of my new book, Waging War With Perfect: Battle Your Inner Critic and Win.)
In the meantime, here’s a sneak peek at the First Two Voices of the Inner Critic.
Do you hear the Voice of Delay?
This is the voice that tells you to wait.
Wait until you’re ready.
Wait until you know the perfect words to say.
Wait until your speech is better.
Wait until the next revision.
Wait until your writing is stronger.
Wait until the next (better) opportunity comes along.
Wait until you have more money.
Wait until your project (book, idea, proposal, etc.) is better.
Wait until the timing is better.
Wait until you know the next right step.
This is the voice that holds you up. That keeps you from taking action. That resigns you to a holding pattern…waiting, waiting, waiting.
Do you hear the Voice of Dissatisfaction?
This is the voice that focuses on your shortcomings, your failures, and your insecurities.
It’s the voice that tells you that everyone else is doing better than you.
Look at them – they look better than you.
Look at them – they’ve published three books already.
Look at them – the boss likes them more than you.
Look at them – they’re making more money than you.
Look at them – they’re kids are doing better than yours.
Look at them – they’re a doing a better job parenting than you are.
Look at them – they’re more talented than you.
Look at them – they’re marriage is so strong and healthy.
Look at them – wouldn’t it be nice to have their luck and opportunities?
Why can’t you catch a break? Why can’t you get out of this rut? Why can’t you make more happen?
This is the voice that takes advantage of your vulnerability. It highlights your “weaknesses” and reminds you of all the ways you think you’re letting down your spouse, boss, team, kids, business partners, or clients. This voice haunts you. It taunts you. This voice hurts.
Look, I don’t know which voice you hear. Maybe it’s one of these two. Maybe it’s one of the final two. (Make sure to check out tomorrow’s post on the other two voices!)
No matter which voice you hear, it’s keeping you from something. It’s limiting your potential. It’s minimizing you.
The only way to change, the only way to stop, the only way to defeat your Inner Critic is to Wage War. To engage. To go to battle. To fight. For your dreams. For your happiness. For your peace. For your future.
To live the life you secretly want to live.
To Battle Your Inner Critic…and Win.
This is the fourth post in the Waging War on Perfect Series. (excerpts from my new book – coming February 2017!)
In case you missed other posts in the series, you can check them out below:
Hope you enjoy! And if you’d like a free copy of my new book – coming out in a few weeks – please enter your name below and I’ll shoot a digital copy to you when we launch.
Thanks and have a fantastic day!