I hope this doesn’t sound too crazy, but I seem to live with an inner mini me, a nasty little guy who does a regular play-by-play analysis of the world around me. Occasionally the voice says cruel things about others, but mostly his color commentary is focused on me—my mistakes, my shortcomings and the myriad ways I need to improve. It is getting pretty exhausting! I wouldn’t say it is constant, but it is definitely frequent. The voice acts up when I am trying to work, distracts me when I am playing with my kids and taunts me when I am trying to sleep. I tried meditation, but it felt impossible. My inner dialogue only went into overdrive! It seems that wherever I am, whatever I am doing, mentally I am somewhere else, reliving some past disappointment or stressing over some upcoming event.
Do you have any advice as to how I might silence the mean voice in my head?
Dear Seeking Silence,
You are not, nor do you sound, in the least bit crazy. We all live with “a nasty little guy” (or gal), a harsh inner critic that expresses frustration and disapproval about our actions, choices, behaviors and circumstances. The actual self-talk is different for each of us—as is its intensity, timing and frequency—but what you are describing is fairly universal.