What little voice? I don’t have one. Yes you do. We all do. It’s the chatter that goes on in your brain. Some call it monkey mind.
Whatever your little voice says sounds perfectly. That’s the problem. You tend to listen to it too much because it does sound logical and you end up believing it.
Your little voice is the sum of all the experiences and advice you’ve had in your life and really haven’t been thinking about.
It’s your reptilian brain or amygdala and it’s 400 million years old. It’s that part of your brain that talks to you and boy it does a lot of talking. Sadly we tend to believe what it says is true. It comes up with it gets triggered by something.
Your little voice is mine, it’s yours, your parents, teachers, friends, and spouse. All people with good intentions trying to protect you by telling you what to do.
There is a little voice inside of you that REALLY knows what to do and knows what’s best for you. Your spirit is your ultimate little voice that is truly you. It says things like this is what you’re meant to do. You’re good. Keep going. We only hear it once in a while. Not often enough.
We all have the ability to recognize that little voice and use it to accomplish things. So often that little voice sabotages us. We say we want one thing, then we do another. We say we want to be successful but we sabotage the job interview. We say we want to be thin but we eat too much. We say we want to be smart but we skip class or don’t read that book the boss lent us.
Your little voice is there for a reason. It can keep us from doing stupid things like jumping out of a plane without a parachute. It kept us safe as kids, stopping us from stepping out into traffic so we don’t want to eliminate it, we want to manage it.
We become pre-programmed with our little voice. For instance, my grade 7 teacher told me I wasn’t good at math. So every time I had to calculate something my little voice said oh, you can’t do that and I’d pull out a calculator. When I had to take a stats course for my Purchasing certification, my little voice said: “How am I going to pass this course?” So our experiences can pre-program us with certain automatic responses, but we can unlearn that.
Why is it so difficult to do what we say we’re going to do? Resistance. The resistance is the voice in the back of our head telling us to back off, be careful, go slow, compromise. The resistance grows in strength as we get to an insight, as we get closer to the truth of what we really want. That’s because the lizard hates change and achievement and risk.
Your reptilian brain is here to stay, and your job is to figure out how to quiet it and ignore it.
How do we stop that little voice and reprogram?
1. We need to be able to recognize the little voice.
2. We need to be able to step aside and look at the voice objectively, question it and detach yourself from it.
3. Be able to assess where it came from
4. Use management techniques.
Being willing to look inside and question your own thoughts, you become accountable and responsible for your thinking. POWERFUL. We need to take responsibility and be personally responsible instead of justifying, blaming and denying.
For most of us that little voice tries to protect your ego. It’s on autopilot. The easiest way to manage it is to say STOP, REDIRECT.
Remember, your amygdala, your reptilian brain is never going to go away. It’s been there for over 400 million years but you can learn to manage it with some simple techniques. If nothing else put an elastic band around your wrist and every time those negative thoughts come up, snap it. Sounds funny but your little voice will wake up and say, I’d better keep quiet.
To learn more about techniques to master your little voice contact Dale at www.dalechoquette.com.
West Kelowna, BC