The Devil on Your Shoulder—Your Saboteur

Last week, my husband and I played golf at the beautiful and very challenging Kapalua Plantation Golf Course in Maui. At the first tee, we were paired-up with a golf pro named Rusty and his wife. Immediately, I began to think negative thoughts, “I can’t golf with him” and “he will never want to play with a 25 handicap!” Those thoughts could have sabotaged my game but, as a trained coach I knew that I had to consciously change my thoughts to, “This is a great opportunity to play with a pro” and “maybe I will pick up some new golf tips!” I consciously began to believe that golfing with Rusty was going to improve my game and that I was capable of playing with him and his wife. That shift in thinking allowed me to play one of the best rounds of my life. Rusty was inspiring to watch and because I believed in my abilities– Rusty believed in me and offered me positive encouragement and some great golf tips.

Recognize Your Saboteur
We are all guilty of thinking negative thoughts, and according to Dr. Dennis Gersten, a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, “On average a person runs about 15,000 thoughts per day in which at least half of those are negative.” In coaching, we call that negative and destructive voice your Saboteur. We believe that it is crucial that clients learn how to recognize their Saboteur’s voice and take note of the kinds of things their Saboteur says. Then, as soon as a client can recognize their Saboteur, they can begin the process of defeating it and return to doing what they intended to do with confidence and conviction.

Defeat Your Saboteur
In his article, Mind Management(*, T. Harv Eker states, “You have the natural ability to cancel any thought that is not supporting you.” All of us are guilty of believing in those negative thoughts and allowing our Saboteur to affect our performance and success. However, many of the most accomplished and fearless people have learned how to defeat their Saboteur by cancelling those thoughts that are not supporting them and focusing on empowering thoughts that lead to success. As a coach, there are many techniques that I use with my clients to assist them with this process. Many people I have worked with have become successful at personifying their Saboteur (e.g. think of the cartoon where the devil appears on the character’s shoulder and tries to convince him to behave badly). Once my clients visualize what their Saboteur looks like and what it sounds like in their own mind —they devise a way to defeat it (e.g. in the cartoon, once the character thinks about what is right they force the devil to disappear –poof!). When you learn how to recognize and defeat your Saboteur you will be honouring your commitments and will accomplish much more than you thought was possible.
If you are interested in learning more about Positive Performance Coaching or would like a free coaching session to learn how to defeat your own Saboteur—feel free to call or email me.
BTW, if you do not get an immediate reply, I may be out working on those golf tips from Rusty!

Share This Post

People are encouraged in different ways.
If you knew what motivated your teen (or your boss, or your partner) could you collaborate with less stress and better results?

Download my FREE GUIDE: CORE MOTIVATIONS – How to Leverage Your Strengths and Communicate More Effectively. Get it here instantly – for FREE!

{ 0 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment