Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Gremlins on Parade

Many of you are, no doubt, familiar with the Gremlin - that voice inside your head that's always telling you what's wrong with you. Or maybe you know the Gremlin by some other name - see

But what can you do when your Gremlin is being particularly loud, boorish, and obnoxious to you?

The first thing is to remember, as Richard Carson, author of Taming Your Gremlin says, that "your Gremlin knows precisely how to get your attention and will create movies in your head suited to your vulnerabilities." So remember that whatever generalizations your Gremlin happens to make will likely sound particularly compelling you to - even if it is factually inaccurate. Let me repeat that last part ... Even if it is factually inaccurate.

Second, remember that your self-concept - AND the one being espoused by your Gremlin - "is faulty for one simple reason: you are not a concept." You're a human being and far too complex to be categorized in such absolute terms. So don't let your Gremlin delude you into thinking it knows more about yourself than you do. It really doesn't; it just wants you to think so.

Third, remember that Gremlin visits are often excellent opportunities for personal growth. You see, while a Gremlin's conclusions are rarely correct, its chattering can actually point us to a constructive learning edge by showing us that we need to learn how to better handle criticism, to feel more comfortable in uncomfortable settings, to recover more quickly from disappointments, as examples.
See the shift? It goes from Gremlin being all knowing, to Gremlin being all wrong, to Gremlin being a catalyst in facilitating our continued development.
Last, remember that you're very good at many things and some of them need your attention right now. So, the sooner you can actually re-engage yourself in what you already know you do well, the sooner your Gremlin-itis will subside AND the sooner can start benefitting from its resultant - that is, constructive - insights.

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