Undergoing Career Changes Midlife Can Help You Slay Your Inner Demons Once and For All

Doubt, lack of self esteem, failure, unworthiness, and indecisiveness are just a few of the painful inner demons and voices that can destroy your positive self image.

For instance, the creepy character of Gollum in the “Lord of the Rings” movie trilogy has the dual personality of an evil side (“Yes, my precioussss . . .”) and a suppressed positive sense of self that tries desperately to stay alive. When these two conflicting personalities clash with each other onscreen, it becomes easier to directly relate to what it is like when we are faced with the choice of either giving into our most traumatizing inner demons or fighting against them for our own sanity.

One of my clients was a school teacher who was making career changes mid life. He wanted to become a lawyer and was taking the California bar exam. His experience provided the perfect of example of how important it is for each of us to be diligent at the watch as the demons and negative voices invade our thought processes with permission.

“The demons are at the door howling and trying to break through the ramparts and into my inner sanctum. I have done pretty well in keeping a clear focus on the task at hand, but I can really feel the voices of the past echoing through the corridors of mind, saying hauntingly, ‘You will not pass; nothing you have done will prepare you adequately; why even try!’”

Refusing to relent, the client went on describe his successful exam performance this way: “I entered the forest, so to speak, and persevered, endured the blocking and ‘you can’t pass’ voices, and emerged on the other side victorious. If you could only understand how scared I’ve been to take this practice exam because of the damning and negative emotions related to its history, you’d know what a major triumph this accomplishment represents.”

Through our work together, this client who was making a career changes in mid life began to realize how hard he has been on himself about what he calls “this stupid test.” “Once I completed this daunting practice exam, I realized how difficult I had made it out to be in my mind,” he explained. “But after having gone through each question, I saw how unmerciful I had been toward myself as a form of punishment, almost.”

No matter what individual personal demons and negative voices continue to infiltrate the sanctuary of your innermost thoughts, here are ten proven guidelines to help you silence them once and for all:

  • Think of ways you can be your absolute best.
  • Focus on your strengths and not your weaknesses.
  • Consistently remind yourself of who you are becoming.
  • Have faith in yourself and know your dreams will come true.
  • Challenge yourself to become all you can be, more than you’ve ever been.
  • Encourage yourself to keep going as you continue to build and expand on this “work in progress” that will eventually become the “new you.”
  • Acknowledge your successes.
  • Remain unconditionally constructive.
  • Allow yourself the freedom and personal grace to achieve greatness.
  • Take a stand for the success you truly deserve.

When we hear the painful demons and voices, we must disagree and fight back. Turn to the truth of your innermost beauty and positive sense of self and focus on your many talents and the incredible character that represents who you truly are. Then play them over and over again in the theater of your mind.