Changing the voice of the judge

April 6, 2019

You’re at the office and you just got an email from your boss saying there is a mistake in a report you sent in. You’d checked it twice but somehow missed it…what do you say to yourself? Maybe something like… “You idiot! How could you miss such an easy thing!” (I like to call these the “oh sh**” moments).

The way we talk to ourselves matters. It’s the voice we listen to the most and tends to be a reflection of what we believe to be true about ourselves.  Most leaders have an overly critical judge that has been riding them hard for years. It’s helped them succeed by pushing them relentlessly and not giving any grace. Fortunately, or unfortunately, it’s not sustainable long term – it leads to burnout.

However, you can help change the voice in your head to be much kinder and still be a rockstar. Imagine if you treated yourself as well as you treated your best client. How much more performance would you get out of yourself?

Changing the voice of the judge (or gremlins as Brene Brown calls them) requires repeated vulnerable connections with safe/trusted people. When you share your self-judgment with others you give them an opportunity to share their love and acceptance and “same here” stories. The more you do this, the more you’ll internalize these new messages of acceptance, and the easier it will be to recall them. 

What I’ve seen in my own life is that as I’ve intentionally worked on this, my “oh sh**” moments not only activate my judge, but soon after, I start recalling the accepting and grace-filled messages from my coach, husband, and TLP tribe. The first time this happened, I was pleasantly shocked! I am now able to get back to whatever I was working on much faster and with a clear mind, and not let those moments derail my whole day or even week.

Listen to your self-talk next time you have one of those moments. Do you treat yourself like the valuable asset you are? If you’d like to learn more about quieting the judge and unleashing your potential, let me know! I’d love to share more!

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