Who’s in Your Head?

Does this ever happen to you?
Before leaving for an appointment this morning, I checked my email one last time (just to make sure nothing urgent came in. Then, before I knew what I was doing, I opened one that had an intriguing subject line. Wouldn’t you know it, the article had information I was interested in pursuing. I clicked the link that took me to the website that had a list of “helpful resources.” As I scanned the list noting several articles and sites I’d like to check out the “adult voice” in my head reminded me that I had an appointment to get to and that the resources would still be there in the afternoon. Sometimes my eagerness to pursue something interesting gets the best of me. Fortunately, I have more than one voice in my head.
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Eric Berne developed a theory of Transactional Analysis. He said we have three ego states – parent, adult and child. The parent state is the one that creates the “should” that make us feel so guilty. Everyone has this part and it can be relentless. Then there’s the child state. When we’re functioning from this place we’re either resisting the parent state, maybe even being oppositional, or we’re just into having fun. The place you want to come from is the adult state. When you’re there your decisions are not based on what you should do or what’s fun, but on what makes sense.

How do you know what makes sense for you at any given time? One way is to have a future check with an “if…then” conversation (yes in your head). i.e. “if I do this now here’s what is likely to happen as a result.”

You can develop the habit of listening to the adult voice in your head that suggests behaviors that make sense. This is really preferable to being cowed by the tyranny of “should“ or the voice that doggedly resists being told what you must do or be. Of course, it does take time to develop and maintain a habit. Having someone to hold you accountable will help you succeed.
You can do it yourself with commitment and a tracking sheet, find an accountability partner, or better yet, work with a coach.

Who do you know that would love a half hour phone coaching session as a holiday gift? My gift to you when you book your own complimentary session before November 30th.

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