"Look at your ratty hair in this humidity," Jenny rightly observes. "Honey, you're a wreck."
Jenny is spot-on about my frizz. She must be very wise. Now I see, I am a wreck.
I learned all about the "False Self" voice a few years ago now, but somehow mine still sneaks up. I named mine "Jenny" (because that's what new acquaintances often mistakenly call me).
There are plenty of delightful Jennys, but I imagine this one as a bent over, wrinkled, angry, judgmental, disapproving shrew who loves to wag a crooked finger, shake her gray head, and tell me all the ways I'm dropping the ball.
I hate her. She makes me feel dumb and lazy and incompetent.
But everything she says is rooted in some potential screw up that I very well might make. So, in the moment, it seems prudent to at least consider her pronouncements.
"You see that child with the mushroom hair and the dirty RUN DMC tee-shirt?" (Jenny spares no unflattering detail.) "He's yours, and today was picture day." (Insert withering sneer.) "You're a pitifully lazy mother."
Hm. Again, Jenny appears to have my back. I must, in truth, BE pitiful and lazy.
"Is that a Mars Bar wrapper in your purse? Nice work on the diet, PorkRind."
The ugly, unconstructive, shaming things we say to ourselves that no one else hears -- that's our "False Self" voice. We all have one, and unless we can identify "him" or "her," that voice can keep us hidden, silent, focused on the negative, denying our talents and covering our gifts from the world. We've got to get a handle on this.
The trick is to be able to "hear" when our internal voice is helpful, enlightening, constructive and true, or dark, punishing and unfair.
If your False Self voice is keeping you on the couch, away from accomplishing what you really want, I hope you'll sit in on my next LifeInspired group coaching session (see sidebar). We'll learn some specific, proven tactics for bringing ourselves back to positive, fruitful action.
You'll feel better for it. ;)