Inner Critic, Inner Rebel, or Inner Coach?
When we spend time manifesting and thinking of the future, our inner critic, inner rebel, or inner coach can get involved. Listen in to this week’s episode of the Love Your Life Show where I teach you the difference between the three. It is important to learn the difference between the three as then you can intentionally choose whether to listen or not. You way ask why that matters. It makes all the diference!
The Growth Cycle
First let’s remember what to expect when we’re in the growth cycle. I speak a lot on this show about the importance of having a goal, of setting our sights on something that’s a bit scary, a bit out of our reach, that pushes our brain into that discomfort of the growth cycle. That’s part of evolvement. It’s part of you becoming your best self. Not because you’ll feel better there. Rather, it’s because you’re either growing or shrinking. As a human organism, you are either growing and pushing yourself into your next best version of yourself or you’re stagnating, settling, and ultimately shrinking.
Choosing the growth path leads to a feeling of a life well lived. Furthermore, when you pay attention to and act on your desires, you grow. Whereas, when we ignore them, we side track our goals and our progress. This leads to feeling flat, feeling like we’re running someone else’s race, feeling like we’re doing everything everyone else wants us to do, why aren’t we happy.
At some point, we get to a place where we begin to understand that it’s not about other people being happy with our decisions. We reach an understanding that what people think of what we’re doing isn’t as important as what we think of what we’re doing.
The Brain’s Motivational Triad
Second, let’s have a quick refresher on the brain’s motivational triad. Our brain’s job is to keep us alive. It doesn’t care if we’re happy or if we reach the end of our life feeling satisfied and content. Rather, it wants us alive. And so, it has a three-fold desire to seek comfort, avoid pain, and conserve energy. If this is your first time hearing about this, please get my podcast roadmap at smbwell.com/roadmap as moving through that will feel great to you.
What we need to be aware of for this week’s episode on the inner critic, is that our brain’s motivational triad encourages us to avoid our dreams. Because of our brain’s wiring, the inner critic and the inner rebel can be dominating forces in our head. Join me in taking our power back!
Which Voice is Talking?
Listen in to the Love Your Life Show so I can teach you the difference between these three inner voices. The better you can discern between the three, the faster you will reach your goals. Also, the less you’ll be a pawn in your brain’s drama. Let’s learn the difference between three different voices in your head: the inner coach, the inner critic, and the inner rebel.
The Inner Coach
Let’s start with the most fun. The inner coach. This is the voice in your head that sounds supportive and kind. The inner coach says things like
- “Yes this is hard. I know. You’ve got this!” and
- “What’s your next step?” and
- “Wow, you’re doing a great job!” and
- “Feel the fear and do it anyways”.
The way you know your inner coach is talking is is the thoughts you’re thinking are leading you to take actions that move you TOWARDS your future goals. Further, when you listen to the inner coach voice you feel supported. Ask yourself: “Do the thoughts I’m thinking lead me to take messy action, to move forward, to grow?” If the answer is yes, the inner coach is talking. Turn that volume up. Become familiar with things she says by brainstorming and journaling: What are some things your inner coach says? How does it feel when you listen to your inner coach?
The Inner Critic
Many of us are already familiar with recognizing the inner critic. First and foremost, the inner critic is a critical voice. The thoughts you think when the inner critic is leading your brain are openly mean and critical. The inner critic may say things like:
- “Don’t be dumb. You’ll never follow through with that!”, and
- “That will never work”, or
- “You could never do that”, and
- “That’s so selfish, you’re only thinking of yourself”.
Whereas the inner coach may sound like my voice or someone else who has supported you along your growth path, the inner critic may sound like a critical voice from your past, like your mother or fathers voice or even your 4th grade English teacher’s voice. Get familiar with it so you can learn to call it out.
The way you know if your inner critic is talking is that it will be talking you out of taking action towards your goals and dreams. It will be encouraging you to stay the same or move backwards. Another way you’ll know your inner critic is talking is in how you’ll feel. You certainly won’t feel supported or hopeful like you will when listening to the inner coach. Rather, you’ll feel depleted, unmotivated, possibly hopeless, like what’s the bother?
What are some things your inner critic says? Who does your inner critic remind you of? How does it feel when you listen to your inner critic?
The Inner Rebel
Finally, the inner rebel. For me, this voice is the sneakiest. I view the inner rebel as the brain’s last ditch attempt to hold on to its’ motivational triad. It’s the brain’s desperate move for when we’ve recognized the inner critic, have ignored it and are about to take action towards our goals. Here comes the inner rebel.
The inner rebel is a rebel voice because rebels against our goals. It’s also rebellious in that it’s not outwardly critical. The inner rebel is sneakier than the inner critic. You’ll know the inner rebel is speaking if it’s moving you away from taking action towards your goals and dreams.
The inner rebel is SNEAKY warriors, it’s softer than the inner critic. The inner rebel may say things like:
- “Are you sure that’s what’s best for you?” and
- “Come on, you’ve done a lot today. Surely you can start tomorrow”, or
- “Awww, that’s too hard. How about you take a self care day”, and
- “I know you said you wanted to stop snacking but today’s different. How about you start tomorrow?”, and on and on…
The inner rebel is driven by the brain’s attempt to avoid change. Change means discomfort. And so the brain brings in the big guns. Whereas the inner critic is a louder more negative voice, the inner rebel sounds supportive, semi-innocuous even. I find it uses my own thinking against me.
Ultimately, you’ll know you’re listening to the inner rebel if you’re moving away from your dreams. If the voice is talking you out of taking action towards your goals.
The warrior move lies in learning about it so that you can recognize it and call it out. What kinds of things does your inner rebel say?
Love Your Life School
Learning to discern between these three voice is so powerful. I gave several examples of them in real life as seeing how they show up in reality is super impactful. Make sure you listen in. If you’re listening after this has been published, click on that link and go to episode 253.
And if you have a hard time thinking of what your inner coach would say or if your inner coach voice isn’t very strong, enroll in the Love Your Life School. Life is a continuous lesson of how to best be ourselves. I do the research so you don’t have to. I just ask for you to show up. Make sure you’re sitting in the classroom.
Positive Mindset Podcasts to Program Into Your Brain:
- [PEP TALK] Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway
- Your Future Self
- The Gift of Self Acceptance
- Celebrating You
- What Happy People Think