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YOUR INNER BRAT!
Author, Taming Your
Inner Brat: A Guide for
Transforming Self-defeating Behavior
Who runs your business -- you
or your inner brat?
Everyone has an inner brat. It's the part of us that's still a
It gets furious at the slightest inconvenience. It feels
get what it wants when it wants, and it whines and
when things don't go its way.
Chances are this describes at least one of your clients or
Its always easier to spot someone else's inner brat than your
But take a moment now to reflect on yourself and answer the
- Do you frequently complain
that something isn't fair?
- Do you get angry at least once
- Do you hate at least one
client or employee?
- Are you convinced that the
government, the economy or the
competition is responsible for the lack of growth in your
- Have you made bad decisions
because you were upset?
- Are you a spreader of
- Do you frequently forget to
follow through on things or
return phone calls?
If you answered yes to any of
these questions, then your inner
brat is your close business partner, like it or not. Your inner
not only makes you miserable, it can also undermine the
of your business.
Research has shown that while some jobs are more stressful
others, your level of satisfaction and success have more to do
your attitude than with the work itself.
For example, consider two business owners, Arthur and Betsy.
both recently left their employers and are each struggling to
own consulting businesses. Arthur complains, "I made 20 phone
last week, and still haven't landed an appointment to talk to
about how I can serve their needs. Going to work every day is
banging my head against the wall. The economy sucks.
On the other hand, Betsy, who is in a similar position with her
looks at it this way: OK, I made 20 phone calls last week, which
was my goal. That's the good news. Unfortunately it hasn't
any solid business yet, but Don in the purchasing department
Widgets, Inc. invited me to call him back in a month. That gives
few weeks to do my homework on Widgets and make a more
THE KEY IS CHANGING PERSPECTIVE
You can see from this example that how much you enjoy your work
function of how you view things. It makes no difference whether
work inside or outside, at a desk or behind a counter; or
wear jeans or suits. If you focus on the negative you will never
your business, no matter how much money you make.
Arthur in the above example has a strong inner brat. He
finds fault. He perceives himself as a victim. Not only will his
make him irritable and gloomy; it will adversely affect his
style, making it even more difficult to negotiate contracts.
This in turn
will make him feel even more like a failure.
Betsy is more positive about her business, but at the same time
also realistic. She's aware of the difficulty in getting
instead of dwelling on what's wrong with the economy or anything
she looks for opportunities to improve her skills. This keeps
on solutions and helps her project a positive manner with
No one is cheerful one hundred percent of the time. But people
don't let their inner brats whine and complain suffer less
fewer physical ailments and are more optimistic about the
There are many things you cannot control in business. For
have no control over interest rates or your clients'
clients or potential clients are argumentative or resistant,
have a problem with their inner brats. But you don't have to let
inner brats push your buttons and unleash your own inner
HERE'S WHAT TO DO
Some aspects of running your business may be unpredictable
unpleasant. But even then, you can view them in a different
- Think of difficulties as a
challenge rather than as a threat.
Maybe you need to adopt the old sports aphorism as your
personal motto: "When the going gets tough, the tough
- Take advantage of slow times
to write thank-you notes
to potential prospects with whom you've communicated
on the phone or in email.
- When things are hectic or
overwhelming, look for opportunities
to praise employees for pulling together as a team.
- When you have to work with
difficult people pretend you're
watching a movie of them, and you're the director trying to
decide what to do next. This will help you stay emotionally
detached from their quirks, and you'll be calmer and in
- Be aware of your inner brat's
whining and complaining, which
can undermine your success. Fire your inner brat. It has no
place in your business!
About the Author:
Pauline Wallin, Ph.D. is a psychologist in Camp Hill, PA,
and author of
"Taming Your Inner Brat: A Guide for Transforming
(Beyond Words Publishing, 2001) Visit
https://www.drwallin.com for more information, and subscribe to her free, monthly Inner Brat Newsletter.
Copyright Pauline Wallin, Ph.D. 2019. All rights reserved.