Recently I began working with some distinctly different clients which is always exciting as each one brings unique
situations and challenges to the table. As well and of greatest importance is that all have a determination and desire to move around and beyond the obstacles that have them in some ‘stuck’ place. So together we embark on their path to greater achievement, fulfillment, satisfaction and happiness.
It doesn’t take long in the process for me to detect a ‘different’ voice emanating from my client. By different I mean this person is saying things that are counter to what my client has indicated she/he wanted to achieve or how they viewed their situation. Often the comments are so starkly different that I am moved to ask this person who else they just invited into our meeting? Here are examples:
I am determined to regain my energy and enthusiasm for my business which is why am investing in working with a coach
The Uninvited Voice: (as spoken through the client’s mouth)
Frankly I don’t really know why I am even trying. I haven’t had any real success for a very long time.
I want to advance in the company because I am capable and need to earn more money to support myself and my family
- The Uninvited Voice:
As much as I want this I suppose I just need to face the fact that I’m not going to be recognized by management and must accept the limitation on my life
I watch others around me get promotions and move into new jobs that enable them to climb the success ladder. I guess I just don’t have the knowledge needed.
- The Uninvited Voice:
You’re smart and can learn the missing skills. Just find out what you are needing to know and create the plan to acquire that which will carry you upward.
The inner voices referred to are a part of all of us. And although I know of no magic potion that enables us to rid
them from existence, they absolutely can be controlled for both their positive and negative offerings. If we’re not truly aware of these voices they have the ability to hijack our thoughts and attitudes. When they are speaking positive and encouraging perspectives they can truly be motivating and provide solutions.
On the other hand when these voices deliver perspectives that help us remain ‘stuck’ then they have that capability in us. These are the voices that often speak up in those with whom I am working. They are not encouraging. In fact they just don’t like change and although they might understand why we want to change our path, the thought of our doing something different is unsettling … even if it can be seen as better for us. The result often sends us into a genuine funk! Not good!
Each and every time I introduce one to their inner team it takes only moments for them to get it. Rather quickly they become sensitized to how their own thoughts and goals have been stolen or hijacked by voices within that have become the ruling force of how they move … if they move.
WAIT! There is good news in this. We absolutely have the ability to retake charge of what, when and where we want to go and do and a first step is recognizing that such control has been relinquished to what have been our own louder and more dominant voices. Here are some very practical and rather easy steps to allow us to regain control and confidently move forward on our chosen goal.
- Identify the different voices residing within:
Once we recognize that we have our own personal team it makes it much easier to separate the different messages that they deliver. Some are encouraging and understanding of what we want to achieve or accomplish. Others, the resisters, are asking ‘what’s the purpose’ or ‘what’s the use’.
- Separating the various members of your inner team helps to distinguish their messages
This separation allow us all to gain or regain clarity about what WE as our own boss wants and enables us to formulate our plan for getting ‘there’. Caution: Having any conversations with our teams in the presence of others can create concern as in … ‘is she/he actually talking to themselves?’ Some approach this differentiation by actually having this discussion in the presence of another playing the role of ‘good listener’.
- Be a listener to all messages of your inner team and work to understand them.
It’s important that we accept that each and every team member believes they have our interest at heart and the key problem is that it often doesn’t match what we want for ourselves. Yet making sure we hear, understand and differentiate the messages allows us to basically say ‘Thank you for your thoughts, concerns and ideas. Now I need you to understand that I am doing what I think I need to do to achieve my goals.
There are a number of ideas as to how to treat, hear and respect our inner voices. And to me, here is the key. Recognizing that the voices that we occasionally hear from within can be motivational to helping us achieve the goals we have … OR … they can work to keep us from moving forward as we know we want and must do for our own benefit. Just the separation of the related messages from what we want can free us up to make the desired progress. It allows us to reclaim the control that we, often unknowingly, have relinquished to another.
Regardless of our dealing with a work related issue or one in another area of our life and although the team player can be, look and sound different in each situation, recognition that they exist allows us to differentiate from ourselves and open the door to where we want to go and be. Hijacking is often associated with association with airplanes and cars. When it comes to hijacking our thoughts, goals or plans is where we get to draw the line. We may have personal teams however they are NOT the boss of us!! Here’s to good conversations and being our own best driver!!