Your Negative Nellie is Acting Up. Now What?

negative nellie

Your Negative Nellie is Acting Up. Now What?

I hate that nagging critical voice in my head that tells me I suck, or I didn’t do it right, or I was wrong to do/say that, or that I just don’t deserve what I want.

Yes, I have that voice too. We all do. There are biological and physiological reasons we have this voice that I won’t go into here. Although, it is a bit of fascinating information!

What I do want to focus on is that we don’t have to BELIEVE the voice.

The voice exists to keep us safe, to keep us alive and out of trouble. It exists to create habits that can be anticipated and therefore there are no surprises.

Whenever we are starting something new, undertake something we aren’t familiar with or have the skills to do or are just doing something a different way, the voice sits up, pays attention and starts in on us. Hey, What do you think you are doing?!

What is one to do? Just ignore it!

I am in the process of building and beta testing an online course. Something I have never done before. It entails creating content, social media outreach, learning Mail Chimp (NOT intuitive BTW), figuring out Zoom and the hardware needed, what type of emails to send, when and with what content. The list of things I know NOTHING about feels like it goes on, and on, and on.

My voice is screaming….“You have no idea what you are doing. You should just pay someone else to do this. This isn’t going to work. People are going to think you are incompetent. This is going to look like such an amateur effort.”

And a whole bunch of other unhelpful comments from the Negative Nellie peanut gallery.

Some of it is true. I don’t know how to use Mail Chimp. I am barely a rudimentary user of Social Media, let alone an expert. I have attended, but never hosted a meeting on Zoom. I have never run an email campaign.

But you know what, I CAN LEARN!

That is exactly what I am doing. I am ignoring the voice in my head, reminding myself that I am learning and I will make mistakes and that is OK. I am not perfect, no one is. I am focusing on what I am accomplishing, not on what I don’t know and still have to learn. (Even though it is a lot. I am, after all, still a realist. :-)

I am moving forward anyway, in spite of the fact that I don’t know what I am doing and that the voice does has some valid points. I am not allowing myself to get stuck.

Why? Because I want to grow. I want to learn new things. I want to be challenged. I want to use my creativity in new ways. I want to be open to new experiences and to be curious.

Because I don’t want to stagnate. I don’t want to be my own worst enemy.

And most of all because I believe in what I am doing and I believe that what I have to offer will help people…Help them to let go of mental and emotional baggage that is keeping them weighed down and stuck.

Because I want to help them to be Happier, feel lighter and not beat themselves up so much.

So, here are a few simple steps to take when your Negative Nellie is acting up:

  1. Remind yourself the voice is there to keep you safe, not to help you grow. It is NOT aligned with YOUR goals.
  2. Acknowledge and accept that you will make mistakes. Use those mistakes as learning opportunities, not fuel for your Negative Nellie.
  3. Focus on what you ARE learning and accomplishing. The glass is half full.
  4. Celebrate your small wins.
  5. Keep moving forward. One step at a time.

Nike had it right….Just Do It!!