Home > Challenges, Leadership, NLP > What are the voices telling you?

What are the voices telling you?

Amanda’s comment on my last post “it’s easy to become so self consumed in negativity when you fail to turn it around on the spot” got me thinking about the voices we all hear giving us a commentary on how we are doing.  No you’re not crazy, it’s part of our nature.

And very often they are negative:Voices in your head

“Who do you think you are, thinking you could be a Partner in this firm”

“What an idiot you are – you got that wrong again”

“It’s no good applying for that job because there will be hundreds of people better qualified than me”

Where do they come from? often from people who admonished us in our early life – some even hear the actual voices of those people, for others it’s a voice of their own invention.

So what can you do?

  • Remember that it takes 28 days to change a habit – that’s good news! it’s not going to take forever to change the habit of a lifetime – just 28 days of conscious focus and effort to develop a new habit of saying positive things to yourself. For example:  “OK, so I got it wrong today – next time I’ll be better able to catch myself quicker”, “I am worthy of this success”, “I’ll give it a go – because even if I don’t get it right this time I’ll have learn something and I’ll be more successful next time”
  • Believe that ‘There is no failure, only feedback’.  A coachee of mine, when he realises in retrospect he’s made a duff decision, comes up with a better solution and says to himself,  “OK, I’ve had an idea about how we can do this better”.  I’m not saying never admit to making a mistake, but do think about what new possibilities there now are.  Believe also that ‘we all make the best decision at the time based on the information available to us’.  These are what’s known in NLP as ‘beliefs of excellence’
  • Remember you’re in good company: Thomas Edison said  “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”. “Many of life’s failures are men who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up.”

How have you changed the voices in your head for the better?  Do post your ideas below.

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Photo: © iofoto – Fotolia.com

  1. September 23, 2011 at 10:49

    in NLP we might be more interested in “how the voices are telling you” by which I mean the way the inner voice speaks rather than what it says. If my ‘negative’ self talk were to sound like Micky Mouse then I might be a lot less inclined to listen to it. Or how about I get it to sing to me like a choir? What if i were just to change its location, so if at the moment when I speak to myself it sounds like it comes from over my right shoulder, what if I position it in my left hand – what happens then?etc etc

    • September 23, 2011 at 11:11

      Hi Andy Thanks for the comment and Like. I think what you suggest is another option – by ‘playing around’ with how the voice sounds and where it comes from you can indeed change the impact it has.

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