I’m kickstarting my blog into life as part of NaBloWriMo with a thirty-day challenge to write and post on my business blog every day in November. Here’s day three.
Take a break from your inner critic
Forming a new habit is tough. There are obstacles everywhere. One obstacle lies below surface challenges like, ‘I don’t have time.’ This obstacle ends your journey almost as quickly as you’ve begun. I’m talking about vulnerability. Vulnerability is to new habits what Kryptonite is to Superman. And the General of vulnerability is your inner critic and he is General Zod! He knows exactly how to foil your new adventure.
I don’t have much luck with silencing my inner critic. I’ve tried most of the same things you have. Kissing up to him. Shouting him down. Beating him in a burlap sack. But most of the time I feed him too much. There’s nothing left to sustain me and I stop.
This past week my wife Shannon had a TED Talk playing in our office. It was background noise to me at first. But this woman’s speech kept breaking through my work in a good way.
“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage.
Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”
I was listening to Brené Brown’s now uber popular TED talk on The power of vulnerability (it has almost 12 million views). Here’s a little background on Brené:
Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. She has spent the past ten years studying vulnerability, courage, authenticity, and shame. She spent the first five years of her decade-long study focusing on shame and empathy, and is now using that work to explore a concept that she calls Wholeheartedness. She poses the questions:
How do we learn to embrace our vulnerabilities and imperfections so that we can engage in our lives from a place of authenticity and worthiness?
How do we cultivate the courage, compassion, and connection that we need to recognize that we are enough – that we are worthy of love, belonging, and joy?
I have something called a watch list. It’s for people who I stumble across that impress the hell out of me. They’re so interesting that the thought of forgetting their story stresses me out. I add them to my watch list. This is a special list I keep so I follow up and see what they’re doing, saying, writing, or speaking about. Even after close inspection and frequent exposure, most of the people I put on my watch list turn out to be amazing. I don’t stop watching.
Brené has a perfect blend of intelligence, insight and understanding that makes her an instant addition to my watch list. Let me know if she makes your list.