You know that voice. The one that is berates you and criticizes you.
“So-and-so has a successful business, what’s wrong with you?”
“Your mother (or spouse or friend) was right — you’re not cut out to have a business.”
“You only have 6 months left of 2012 and you STILL haven’t accomplished anything on your to-do list.”
And on and on. You get the picture.
My good friends Amy Ahlers and Christine Arylo call this voice your Inner Mean Girl or Inner Mean Bully, which I prefer to Inner Critic (mostly because Inner Critic sounds way too nice for that nasty voice).
Now, while your Inner Mean Girl/Bully can show up in all sorts of instances (i.e. in your love life, as a parent) today’s article is about when she/he decides to put herself on your business’s board of directors.
We all have one — a board of directors residing in your head. This is the place where you make business decisions such as:
- Should I invest in the program or not?
- Should I hire this person or not? (Or should I hire someone period?)
- Is this an opportunity I should take advantage of or not?
- Is this someone I should partner with or not?
- Should I create this product or not?
- Should I complete this marketing task today or not? (Or should I write my ezine or not?)
You see where I’m going. Pretty much any decision you make with your business traces back to your business’s board of directors.
Now the problem comes in when your Inner Mean Girl/Bully is sitting on the board (or worse, president of the board). Because if this is the case, you’re making decisions from a place of weakness instead of strength. Consider:
- You don’t hire someone because you’re afraid you won’t be able to pay for it, even though you’ve reached a point you can’t grow without putting a team in place.
- OR you spend WAY too much (on a program or multiple programs, on a big team, etc.) and your business can’t support that yet.
- You find yourself choosing partners or opportunities that turn into disasters
- You procrastinate when it comes to completing marketing tasks even though you know it would help stabilize your cash flow
- You always have “one more edit” or “one more thing” to do with your product or book (which means you never actually start selling it)
- You can never relax — you’re constantly “doing” yet you’re still not moving forward in your business the way you think you ought to be.
- And so on.
To top it off, (as if making poor decisions wasn’t punishment enough) your Inner Mean Girl/Bully will beat you up when things go wrong.
There’s just no way to win.
So how can you tell if your Inner Mean Girl/Bully is in charge or not? Here are 3 signs:
1. How are you feeling? Do you find yourself suffering from burnout, exhaustion, overwhelm? You probably have an Inner Mean Girl/Bully problem.
2. Do you find yourself procrastinating or maybe you’re unfocused? Or maybe you have writer’s block or are creativity stuck? This is another Inner Mean Girl/Bully sign.
3. Do you have a history of making bad business decisions? Again, tell-tale sign of an Inner Mean Girl/Bully on your board of directors.
These are just the tip of the ice burg but I think the key is this: if you are unhappy with any part of your business, then it’s worth it to see if there is an Inner Mean Girl/Bully lurking about and sabotaging you.
So if this is the problem, what should you do? Stay tuned next week for the solution.