Your Inner Crew of Champions and Committee of Saboteurs

Sometimes I feel like I can conquer anything, and sometimes I’m convinced I am destined for mediocrity.

It took me years to realize that neither of these states is “the real me” or “the fake me.” They’re just different versions of me taking the helm at different times.

Co-Active coaches use a technique that involves personifying these versions of ourselves, e.g.:

  • The “I’m awesome!” Inner Leader
  • The “I’m no good” Inner Critic
  • The “Why bother?” Inner Existentialist
  • The “I should” Inner Nag
  • The “Everything is so wonderful” Inner Appreciator
  • … and many more

Personifying and putting a name to each of these voices makes it almost trivially easy to spot and then manage that voice.

Whenever you feel motivated, it’s a sign that your Inner Leader or one of her Crew of Champions is in charge.

Petone Rowing Club, 1961

Look at that sheer power and alignment! This is how you feel whenever your Crew is cranking.

On the other hand, whenever you feel a sort of ick, an old fogey on your Committee of Saboteurs is in charge.

Still from the film 12 Angry Men, one of my favorite movies

Look at that inertia! These are the guys running the show when you procrastinate, hesitate, or give up.

I’ll talk more about the Crew and the Committee — how to recognize, interpret, and manage them — in the next blog post. For now, see if you can spot members of either group as you go through your day.


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