You know that voice in your head? The one that groans and grumbles, squeals and squawks like an out-of-tune fiddle?
The one that fills the balloon of your head with righteous indignation at the shocking behavior of so-and-so; the temerity, the unbelievable gall of thus-and-such.
You know the one.
Its monologue goes something like this.
Okay. I know that everything out there is a reflection of me. I know I can only change myself, blah blah blah.
But. Really. How could she? How dare he? Why did he?
What’s wrong with her?
What’s wrong with me? Does she love me? Will he ever love me?
Why doesn’t he__________? Why won’t she__________.? Why can’t they____________.
I can’t take it anymore. I can’t take his bullying; her criticism; their bickering. It’s driving me crazy. They do_______. And then they don’t do____________. I’m shocked. I’m appalled! How could they?
I call this voice Grumble Hook. Because it grumbles. And it hooks you into whomever or whatever you’re grumbling about. Keeping you busy out there, rather than paying attention to what’s inside you.
Some useful facts about Grumble Hook:
Underneath all the blame; behind all the sound and fury — angry, self-righteous, judgmental, obsessive – Grumble Hook is scared. And needs something from you. And is ashamed to ask for it. Or doesn’t know how.
Grumble Hook often doesn’t know what he needs or wants. She doesn’t know how to connect with the desire that breathes softly under the heaving bosom of rage, helplessness, despair.
He doesn’t know he can ask you for what he wants. She doesn’t know she can trust you to listen, to pay attention, to understand, to help.
Grumble Hook is often loudest – most obsessed with what’s wrong with the world and the people in it – when you’re on the threshold of change. When you’re crossing a bridge, or have just arrived on the other side of one.
When your business is growing; when you’ve created something new and are standing on unfamiliar ground; when you’ve made, or are making, an evolutionary change in your business, your life, your way of being.
When you hear Grumble Hook’s voice in your head, what do you typically do?
Argue with him? Hide her fretful whining behind a seething smile?
Get really busy? Add more things to your miles-long to-do list?
Numb out – with chocolate, or TV, or work, or exercise, or whatever your drug of choice happens to be?
Do you ignore her annoying whine? Rant right along, adding fuel to his fire? Explode in fury at the object of Grumble Hook’s obsession?
Do you bombard GH with positive affirmations, which he doesn’t believe in at all?
Grumble Hook is – potentially – a friend and ally of your conscious self. A loving member of your Inner Guidance Crew.
Some useful facts about Grumble Hook Guidance:
Remember, no matter what GH is screeching on about, he’s really saying some version of this…
I’m scared. Things are changing faster than I can control.
I feel like an ant trying to carry an elephant. It’s too much. I can’t.
Too much responsibility. Too much change, too fast. Too much newness. Too many expectations.
I’m afraid I’m not good enough, smart enough, rich enough, thin enough. Or brave enough. Or enough-enough.
I’m afraid I won’t be able to keep up. You’re racing on ahead. You’ll leave me behind. I’ll be all alone.
I don’t know who I’ll be when I become the person who lives in this new country you’re striding off into. Who will I be when I’m a great success, or I have enough of everything – love, money, recognition, creative power, fame?
How will I recognize myself? Will my friends still be my friends? Will I become someone I don’t like?
Grumble Hook’s voice is the voice of your inner guidance, showing you what needs your loving attention.
It’s some part of you – one of your inner selves – saying, Please take care of me. Please love me. Please remind me of who I really am. Please help me feel safe so I can come along with you on this adventure.
Here are some simple things you can do, to respond to this plea.
Begin by gathering your own presence around you; stand in your own wholeness. Ground and center yourself. Bring yourself to a state of inner connection and calm.
Invite your inner selves – the ones who are wailing in Grumble Hook’s voice – into a meeting-circle in your heart.
Ask them, one at a time, to take their seat in the middle of the circle.
Take some time to truly connect with the self that takes her place in the center of the circle. See and acknowledge her courage. His deep wisdom.
Breathe in the essence of this self. Beyond her fear, beyond his grief, this self is part of your wholeness. This self holds, in her heart, spiritual qualities that you need in order to be whole.
Once you have acknowledged her presence, ask her to tell you how old she is.
Often, these selves are younger, more vulnerable, than you are now.
Ask her to tell you what she’s feeling, and what she wants and needs from you.
Let her know that she can ask you for whatever she truly wants. You will respond.
You may not be able to give her a new yacht, but if her true desire – expressed as a longing for a yacht – is for spaciousness, freedom, being out in nature under an open sky, then you will help her have the essence of her desire.
Your inner self may need help getting to the heart of what she wants. She may need you to help her put down her burden of guilt and shame. To let go of grief or pain or anger he may have absorbed from others when he was too young to distinguish his own feelings from those of everyone around him.
You may need to give your inner selves permission to make a bonfire of beliefs that no longer belong to them, or that were never theirs in the first place. Beliefs that keep them from expressing their true desire. From acting on what really moves them. You may need to give them permission to let go of old agreements — agreements to stay as they are, to live with the status quo.
Love, and patient listening, will help you connect with and nurture your inner selves.
When they feel safe, when they feel loved, when they are full and nourished, they will bring you the gifts that they hold in their hearts. And those gifts – which are spiritual qualities – will help you cross that bridge.
Together, you will build a new home on the far shore. A home to hold and nurture the unfolding miracle of your business and your life.
It starts with really hearing what Grumble Hook is saying. And responding with love, with kindness, with clear truth and appreciation.
When you bring yourself back to your own desire, and act to meet it with love, you unhook Grumble Hook from his focus out there. You bring her back home, where she belongs.
How and where is Grumble Hook showing up in your life right now? How do you meet this voice? Where is it leading you?