The Stories We Tell Ourselves
Think about your day yesterday. What did you tell yourself about the kind of day you had, how well you did a certain task, how you looked, or whether you made the right decision about something?
We are always judging ourselves, comparing ourselves, and telling ourselves little stories about what we can’t do. It’s a human instinct. But the stories don’t stop with just us. Our little judge sets us up with stories about the people we interact with. We go into meetings with stories already in our minds about the other person, why they behave the way they do, what they “really meant” by that comment, and so on. That doesn’t mean you can’t deal with your little judge. You absolutely can, and you must if you want to be an effective leader.
If you want to silence your inner judge, you start by increasing your self-awareness. You have to listen for those little stories your internal judge tells you. Then recognize them for what they are…stories. When they are based in your personal history, look for the positive, empowering lesson the experience taught you, and make that a new story. Just remember, stories are self-talk. It is our choice whether we listen to them.