I am a talented and trained performer! Through my unique performance platform I created a personality that united a city and continues to entertain millions of people every year. 

My unique talent allows me to perform on stage and move people to think, act and feel differently and how they can live the life of their dreams. 

I have well over 10,000 hours of practice and counting. Malcom Gladwell should be proud! 

It has taken me over 20 years to contemplate that and another 20 to believe it. 

Yet, almost every single day of my life, since I turned 21, I have had those who love me, confirm those facts regularly. 

At the same time, people that I have just met, do the same. They will tell a personal story about how they first met the Phillie Phanatic and what he meant to them, their family and their organizations, recounting the moment of joy that they remember often. 

But I wasn’t listening. I was hearing all of them but I wasn’t listening. Are you? 

What Does Your Inner Critic Say?

We all have a powerful and disruptive voice that is easy to hear but overwhelms our ability to listen to others. Say hello to your inner critic.

It is a consistent, repetitive and very powerful voice. “You did what? Isn’t that rich! What a fraud! Come on…you were just lucky. Thank goodness you are able to fake it to make it!”

I heard my inner critic loud and clear. What is your inner critic saying? How is it disrupting your goals, dreams and happiness?

I have replaced mine with the sweet chorus of my family, friends and audiences. More importantly, I am believing them. I am trusting in my talent, expertise and message. It wasn’t easy and it still is loud at times but no longer disrupts my efforts to dream bigger and set bigger goals.

Would you like to do the same?

Here are three simple steps to silence your inner critic and listen to the sweet chorus of your supporters. 

1. Listen to your negative thoughts. 

Wait! I thought I was suppose to stop listening? I know it seems counterintuitive but stay with me here. 

Once you take time to listen closely to that voice and actually spend time contemplating the information, you will see the flaws and unfairness in the statements. 

Reason with that voice as if you were in a debate. That is when the reality of your accomplishments come to light. Some will seem small until you look at the impact over your life those small accomplishments have had. You will also see the big moments in your life that your inner critic has shielded you from acknowledging. 

2. Rethink how you see others.

Judging others and making comparisons lead to a mindset that opens yourself up to the judgement of others. That drama of comparison mentality and judgment is like food to a hungry beast and believe me, your inner critic is a beast and is always looking for nourishment. Stop judging and starve the beast!

3. Mentor yourself!

Mentoring has been so valuable for me as I move into the “give back” stage of my life.

I also have benefited from great mentors. From my parents, to my wife Sandy, to great enlightened leadership that I was blessed with during my time with the Philadelphia Phillies.

I realized that I could mentor my younger self. What would I tell my 18 year old self as I was about to embark on a wonderful career? 

Believe! Have unwavering faith in your abilities! Give yourself a little bit of credit!

Start mentoring your younger self. What would you tell the young version of you?

That process was very powerful for me but it took me almost 50 years of my life before I started doing it.

Don’t wait! Starve the beast and silence your inner critic. Think bigger. Be bigger and give yourself a little bit of credit!