Do you know those voices in your head that tell you all kinds of nasty things about yourself? That is Identity Monster, and in this article, I will share with you how you can tame it.
A colleague of mine sent me a panicked text while I was on a call with a client. He was so freaked out that I called him right after my session, but I wasn’t expecting what he had to say.
“I just got the biggest opportunity of my life,” he said. “It’s what I’ve always wanted.”
“But since I found out,” he went on, “I’ve spent the last four hours playing online soccer and I’m completely paralyzed.”
This is the Identity Monster in full attack.
You know those voices in your head that tell you all kinds of nasty things about yourself, right?
- “There are a million people doing the same thing as you, how can you possibly compete?”
- “You can’t do this, you’re way too lazy.” (or fat, or stupid, or ugly, or poor)
- “HOW much money did you spend? Oh no, what are you going to do now?”
- “Who do you think you are, anyway?”
This is the voice of the Identity Monster. The favorite tools of the Identity Monster are a megaphone and an old school boom box with a tape set to “repeat.” The tape replays all the crap in your head that gets triggered when your comfort level is threatened.
The Identity Monster’s job is to maintain the status quo.
Even when good things are happening, the Identity Monster really sucks at telling the difference between a threat and an opportunity, so it reacts pretty much the same way in both scenarios. Oh, the glorious neurology of it all!
Listed below are three ways to tame the Identity Monster, and how you can get yourself off the ledge and back into the groovalicious flow, so you can have more of what you want in life. That’s why you’re reading this, right? Be sure to check out the video at the end of this article, as I go into more detail on all three of these techniques. Plus you’ll even get to see a little piece of one of the places where I lived in Costa Rica, which is just good for your brain.
Here Are 3 Techniques to Tame the Identity Monster in Your Head:
Revisit Your Big Picture:
Take the focus off of your current reaction and circumstances and put it on your larger view in the world – the legacy you want to leave, the impact you’re out to make, your inspiring vision of the future, and so on. If your thoughts and actions are ‘facing outwards’ instead of on your internal voices and a neurological hamster wheel, it disrupts the repetitive thoughts to guide you back on track.
Create New Brain Wiring with A Daily Workshop:
Create a sacred space for yourself on a daily basis, even if it’s 15 minutes to start. Use that time to get present to what you’re most excited about, what you appreciate and what you’re grateful for, and the one or two goals or accomplishments that you’re focused on for that day. Even celebrating small accomplishments (some days, that’s getting out of bed or going a whole morning without getting distracted by Facebook), when done repeatedly and consistently, helps you maintain a more solution-focused state of mind.
Challenge the Voices in Your Head to A Battle of Wits:
When those nasty voices in your head pop up, you may have noticed that if you try to directly combat them, they come back twice as strong. This is known as the “I’m rubber, you’re glue,” principle. Very technical. Instead, use your brain’s natural abilities to break up the beliefs using tools like evidence gathering and disarming humor. These tools are not only highly effective, but they can also be incredibly entertaining as well.
What does your Identity Monster sound like? Please share with us in the comments section below!