fire the inner-bully

I had an interesting conversation this weekend: The question that arose was: who is leading your inner team? You know those voices going on in your head – that one about needing to be successful at work (“ambition”); the perfect parent (“don’t be like dad/mom”) the voice that wants another cigarette or drink (“give-me-more”); the voice that doesn’t want to socialise (“party-pooper”); and the one that gets you to the gym and drives you on (“gym buddy”). At first you’ll probably only think of one – one very loud one that barks out orders and shoves all the others around. Somehow this one has been put in the lead, and even though his/her leadership style may have something to be desired, the job gets done. The snag however is, that this bossy boots gets in the way of breaking out of old patterns. Things get done, but they get done in the same way – the old way, perhaps even the way it was done by your parents, your grandparents. When wanting to bring new ways of relating, there needs to be a decision to find the leader among the inner voices that can best achieve what we are wanting from life right here, right now. The trick is to privilege that voice, and to get the others to co-operate and resource his/her plan. The first step is recogising who the preferred leader is – perhaps its “the artist” whose voice has been drowned out, perhaps the “decision-maker”. You leader is usually connected to your greatest strengths. Next, fire the bully from the dominant position and get the new leadership to start a new conversation…

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