Words of Encouragement

Jun 27, 2013

I have been intrigued by this pier on the coast. Everything on the end looks good. Of course the end of the pier is where the fish are but how are we going to get there? Isn't that what we all seem to think? We all want to go to the end of the pier. That is the destination. BUT there is this obstacle. Most of the way to get there has been removed. Ever had a goal that just seemed to be insurmountable to attain? You can see it but how do you get there? That is the thought that this image brings up for me. It's pretty apparent what one needs to do to get past this obstacle BUT wait there's more. Something more insidious and we ALL carry it around. Not sure why but it seems to be a law of nature. It is that pest called the heckler. Always giving you self doubt. That is a heavy weight that can really hold you back if you listen to it. Seth Godin is a futurist whose blog I read. www.sethgodin.com.

He is usually provocative and for the most part I enjoy his writing and ideas. Here is what he says about the heckler. I hope it is helpful to you as it has been for me. That is if I can remember to acknowledge it and move on and not get caught up in the distraction. See what you think. It really made a difference for me.

The heckler

How dare you.

You should be ashamed of yourself

Is this the best you can do?

I've written about the lizard brain and my friend Steve talks about the voice of the resistance.

It occurs to me, though, that most of us have to hassle with the heckler.

The heckler keeps a running critique going, amplifying its tone and anger as it goes on endlessly about all the things we shouldn't do, all the things we're not doing enough, and most of all, at our lack of entitlement to do much of anything new or important.

The heckler cannot be eliminated. It's been around since the beginning of our species, and we're hard wired to have it.

What can be done, though, is alter how the rest of the brain reacts or responds to the heckling.

If you engage with the heckler, if you qualify yourself, justify yourself or worst of all, rationalize yourself, the heckler will pounce, turning a small wedge into a giant hole. Like a standup comedian, it's almost impossible to outwit or shut down a dedicated heckler.

But there is a strategy that works. Acknowledge and move on.

When the heckler announces that you're incompetent, unqualified or hardly ready to step forward, think, "oh." And then proceed.

You give it no purchase. No opportunity to escalate. Each jibe is met with "noted."

Over time, the heckler gets quieter, because it just isn't worth the effort.

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