Our internal house can sometimes harbor different voices, different perspectives on the same circumstance. When we are at war within, how can we truly know how we feel?
For instance, take my decision to open my private practice…part of me was thrilled and excited, ready for the adventure that comes from entrepreneurship. Another part of me was terrified and negative, certain that this was a silly decision. In the end, my internal cheerleader and risk-taker won the battle, placating my inner critic with the reasoning that I could always return to a 9-5 position if it didn’t work out.
But how are we to deal with our internal landscape, when we can have differing opinions and emotions towards the same circumstance? It’s difficult enough to deal with external feedback, let alone be split into opposing teams within ourselves.
I’ve come to call this more fearful part of myself the “inner critic,” or sometimes, my “inner skeptic.” This is the part of me that has internalized messages, likely from a young age, of fear and lack from the broader cultural landscape, or from personal experiences. It’s the part of myself that worries about finances, takes to heart stories of failure or loss, or worries about potential or actualized missteps.