Some are healthy, and some are limiting. Do we embrace them? Do we reject them? Do we listen to them?
Where do the voices come from?
An inner voice is a part of being human. It's an internal dialogue. I hear my voice in words and sentences, primarily comparing how I am to how I want to be or ruminations on where I could have done a better job. What do I do about this internal dialogue? I hear the voices for what they are. Reminders that it's never too late to begin again if I want to. Not out of comparison, but out of determining what's most important.
So, listen to your voices and determine if they're relevant to who you are today. They can be your inner guidance system if they're directing you to what matters most. If not, they're voices telling stories that could limit or worry you or make you sad or upset. They may even be the voice of parents, teachers, gurus, or someone in your past who told you how to be. The practice is to own your voices instead of being victimized by them. After all, they belong to you! It is possible to know the difference between guidance and nonsense.
Here are a few of my inner voices:
Bossy — Just do it!
Motivational — Yes, you can!
Judgmental — Don't disappoint me!
Whatever — Life's too long to worry! Have another piece of pie!
4-Star General — Never give up! Soldier on!
Oracle — Just sit there.
I think my voices are sometimes outrageous, but I recognize that they're my own and come from how I view the world. I often need to listen to the General in my head, especially when I've made a commitment and don't feel like completing what I said I would do. The General teams up with the bossy voice, and I get it done. Often, I investigate the judgmental voice and look into the cause of disappointment in myself or others, so I don't gloss over what happened and determine if I need to take any action. Lately, I've been listening to the Oracle just to sit there until a course of action becomes clear.
What are your voices? Do they help you? Let me know your thoughts.
May your day be filled with gentle awareness.
Paulette Sun Davis