I may have mentioned in my previous posts about what we call in the coaching world as our “saboteur”. AKA “the gremlin”. It’s that little (or sometimes not so little) voice in our head that we all have, some more than others. It tells us mean things, negative talk, tells us we can’t do something, that we look stupid, that we’re fat, ugly, etc. Everyone’s is unique. Some people believe theirs more that others. Some people have learned how to squash theirs. But, it’s been my experience, that it never quite goes away and that it evolves, just like we do. It gets smarter, and sneakier too as time goes on.

I’ve started this post a few times, and have never finished or posted about my saboteur. It was a homework assignment from my coach about a year ago; one that I never completed (See, even coaches are bad clients sometimes). I think back then I was afraid to rip the band aid off and show everyone my saboteur. Well, enough hiding, here she is:

My sabotuer is a vicious bitch to me. In my mind she looks like a manequin would, perfect hair, skin, and make up, perfectly thin with no flaws. On display. She is also empty inside. She tells me my world will fall apart at any moment, and to brace myself for it. She wears a smug expression. She tells me I need to be thinner, stronger, younger, in better shape, a better mother, a better wife, a better friend, a better everything. And never, ever, let them see you cry. She used to tell me I'm not good at anything, so why try?


The absolute complete opposite of her, and what in my mind kicks her ass is my alter ego: Joan Jett. She doesn’t give a shit about what anyone thinks of her, doesn’t give a damn about her bad reputation, is exactly who she is and certainly makes no apologies for it. She is a serious ass-kickin' rocker.


In many ways I'm a lot like her, but my gremlin says, “That's not pretty, not lady-like, it's too loud and-your-reputation-IS-so-important-if-it-were-flawed-WE-WOULD-DIE!!!”Metaphorically speaking, the mean-bitch mannequin lady and Joan Jett have roller derby races. They race, they bump into each other, tell each other to fuck off, sometimes they crash and get it into a knock down cat fight. They go around and around the track, going nowhere.Do you think I'm totally crazy yet? Okay, good.But, sometimes they slow down and skate together quietly. Because I am not either of them. I am not perfect at parenting, working out, or anything for that matter. And I don't need to be hard-as-nails tough like Joan Jett either. I can be in the middle. In the grey. My gremlin, the mannequin lady is addicted to suffering. No matter how pretty she presents herself to me, no matter how convincing she is, I still need to remember SHE IS NOT ALLOWED TO LIVE MY LIFE. So, I take my skates back.

And skate away from her to take control of my own life.

So, who is your gremlin, your saboteur? What does he/she say to you? How do you decipher between that voice and your true voice, your true being?