The first couple of days were going great for Peach the Panda. She was even to the point of skipping along her journey because she was simply in a great mood. She even saw a rainbow, a DOUBLE rainbow, along the way.
She saw a tree she wasn’t expecting, and paused. Did she mean to pass by this tree? Before she could look around, she heard a single, slightly scary, voice.
“No, you’re going the wrong way.”
She was going the wrong way? She knew that tree didn’t look right. The voice returned.
“You should have turned left and not right back there.”
“You’re not walking fast enough.”
Maybe she ought to camp out for the night so she could readjust her plan? The voice returned.
“You’re walking too quickly.”
“You need to back and rewalk that entire portion.”
“You aren’t stepping lightly enough.”
She thought something was beginning to sound a little fishy. Where was that voice coming from? Why was it giving conflicting advice? Why was it giving advice at all? This was her journey. Why was there another voice occupying her? Why was that voice telling her she needed to do everything differently? To go back and correct past mistakes?
She yawned and much to her surprise, which is putting it rather mildly, a monster leapt out of her mouth. And the monster kept offering suggestions and orders for her to do things differently. After each order, the monster grew a little bigger, until it was even bigger than her.
It was the Inner Critic Monster. And it had come to correct her. He had a big eraser and was threatening to wipe out her entire journey before she yelled for it to stop. The Inner Critic Monster replied that it was just trying to help her along her journey, but Peach the Panda knew otherwise. She turned around, ignoring the monster, and marched straight ahead.
The Inner Critic Monster deflated like a balloon. Peach the Panda had defeated the Inner Critic Monster.
That little voice offering suggestions of how you could be doing better? It’s time to kill it. At least for the rest of this month. Because that little inner critic, which might be helpful at times, is one of your worst enemies this month. For many folks it’s the singular reason why they don’t hit their goals during November – the Inner Critic Monster keeps their perfectionist streak going and their writing paused.
Don’t let this happen to you. Don’t let the Inner Critic Monster win again. It has eleven months of the year to offer you “helpful” suggestions. Escape that monster for at least one month this year and begin today.
Your challenge for any day of this first week is to write your entire daily goal without using the backspace button. Not even for typos. You can fix them later, but just for one day, stifle that inner critic completely.
What have been the worst things your inner critic has told you, and how have you overcome them? How have you learned to ignore that inner critic? Post about it here: http://www.nanowrimo.org/en/forums/usa-georgia-atlanta/threads/83006