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A Leaders Guide to Managing Your Inner Critic with Cassandra Goodman

Have you ever found yourself in a meeting, second-guessing your every decision, or feeling that nagging voice of self-doubt whispering in your ear? We all have. These inner voices, often critical and harsh, are what many experts call our "parts."

In this week's episode of the Huddle Leadership Podcast, leadership coach Cassandra Goodman shared a powerful framework for understanding and leading our inner voices, or "parts."

There's good news here: these parts don't define you. They're not the whole picture of who you are as a leader. In fact, understanding and leading these parts can be the key to unlocking your full leadership potential.

So, what are "Parts," and Why Do They Matter?

The Internal Family Systems (IFS) model, a well-established therapeutic approach, offers a powerful framework for understanding the multiplicity of the human mind. According to IFS, we all have different sub-personalities or "parts" within us. These parts are like characters in a play, each with their own unique roles, motivations, and perspectives.

Some parts are protective, developed in childhood or through challenging experiences to help us cope and survive. While their intentions are good, they can often hold us back from reaching our full potential. Think of the inner critic who constantly reminds you of your flaws or the perfectionist who pushes you to work tirelessly, fearing failure.

The Huddle Leadership Podcast with Cassandra Goodman

How Can You Lead Your Parts?

The key is not to eliminate these parts but to lead them with compassion and understanding. Here are a few steps you can take:

  1. Acknowledge and Identify Your Parts: Begin by noticing when your parts show up. Are you feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or overly critical? Pay attention to the thoughts, emotions, and bodily sensations that accompany these experiences.

  2. Name Your Parts: Giving your parts names can help you create some distance from them and gain a sense of control. You might call your inner critic "the Judge" or your perfectionist "the Achiever."

  3. Get Curious About Their Intentions: Ask yourself, "What is this part trying to protect me from? What does it want for me?" Remember, even the most critical parts have good intentions at their core.

  4. Offer Compassion and Reassurance:  Thank your parts for their efforts to protect you, but let them know that you're now the leader of your internal system. You can handle the situation and make decisions that are in your best interest.

  5. Practice Self-Care: Caring for yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally can help you build resilience and create a more harmonious relationship with your parts.

Unlock Your Full Leadership Potential

By learning to lead your parts, you can free yourself from self-limiting beliefs and behaviours. You can tap into your core values and strengths, making decisions with clarity and confidence. You can cultivate deeper empathy and compassion for yourself and others, leading to stronger relationships and more effective collaboration.

As you embark on this journey of self-discovery and leadership development, remember that it's an ongoing process. There will be setbacks and challenges along the way. But with patience, curiosity, and self-compassion, you can transform your relationship with your inner world and unlock your full potential as a leader.

To dive deeper into the topic of self-leadership and the Internal Family Systems model, be sure to listen to the full episode of the Huddle Leadership Podcast with leadership coach Cassandra Goodman. She offers valuable insights and practical strategies for leading your parts and creating a more authentic and fulfilling leadership journey.

Download The Huddle Leadership Podcast for this episode, and a brand new episode every Tuesday! Find us on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.


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