It’s Not About the Monger

Earlier this week, I had a really great day. I had a few work successes and some amazing conversations. All and all it was a good day, but I have to confess, good days are hard for me. Celebrating a win without naming where I can improve is challenging.

As I was cooking dinner, I realized my Monger was chiming in very loudly. As soon as I heard her, I started analyzing why she was so loud. What was she saying? Why was she saying it? I kept naming all the ways her message was unhelpful and acknowledged she always gets loud whenever I have some success. And that didn’t help. Because it doesn’t. Analyzing your Monger (inner critic), trying to rationalize with her or figure her out never helps. But this is what we do.

We spend a lot of time debating with her and trying to out-think her. I chat with my Coach in Your Pocket clients about this all the time. It isn’t about your Monger. Once you hear your Monger chatting (which is the hard part), the next thing you do is bring in your Biggest Fan. And yet, we forget this rule all the time—even me, who teaches this stuff!! We are so comfortable listening to and debating the Monger that we forget to try to hear from that voice of wisdom and kindness.

So I took a deep breath, asked myself what I was feeling (fortunately we have a feelings sheet hanging on our fridge), did a little wiggle in the kitchen, and asked to hear from my Biggest Fan. Her voice came in saying, “Girl, it was a great day! Yep, it feels unnatural to have a great day, but we got this. We are doing the work and, yes, some days you will feel like a fraud and that’s normal. Just keep doing great work. One foot in front of the other.” Almost immediately, I felt better.

We convince ourselves we are “doing the work” and “figuring it out” when we analyze the Monger. I used to have clients spend a lot of time on their Monger—drawing her, naming her, really getting to know her. And I was wrong. It isn’t about the Monger.

Once you recognize your Monger is talking, stop listening to her, stop trying to figure out why she is talking, stop giving her your energy. Practice A.S.K. and listen for that quiet voice of kindness and wisdom.

Listen for the Biggest Fan. It is a game-changer.

New on The Happier Approach Podcast

Almost all of my clients have mentioned to me how hard the month of January can be. For a variety of reasons—the darkness, the packing up of the holidays for another year, the inundation of self-improvement New-Year-New-You messages—this time of year can be challenging. 

That is why my goal this month is to give you different ways to think about this New-Year-New-You crap and reframe how you think of change and self-improvement. This week’s episode is about slowing down and being in the present moment. Check it out on Apple Podcast, Spotify, or over here.