March 2013
Vol 6, Issue 3
Creative Coaching Group
 the Creative Coaching Group newsletter

Dear ,

Yay!  March is here!  Besides being Jan-Fest, a month-long celebration of my birth (hint, hint), March always inspires an awakening of new thoughts and bright ideas that have lain dormant over the winter months. Spring has arrived on the West Coast and we can feel smug as we watch the crocuses emerge from the ground while our friends in the east and north still digging themselves out of snow.


On my mind this month is a theme that I consistently see in my high-achieving corporate clients and one that dramatically rears its ugly head at this time of year for my chorus and quartet clients as they head into their spring singing competitions.  I notice the crippling and limiting negative effects self-judgment has on our lives and performance and I address some ways to reframe that diabolical habit in my feature article below. 


And 'cuz I am feelin' a bit of spring fever, I am going to celebrate my birthday by giving YOU a birthday gift. Get the details below and sign up for my Free Teleseminar on March 23 "How to break the self-judging habit." 


Oh yes, and Happy Jan-Fest! :)


  jan signature 

Jan Carley  BA,CEC,PCC

Your Possibility Coach   Creative Coaching Group

604 873-1763  e: 

Feature Article: How to turn self-judgment into self-assessment

judges gavelYou know the feeling. You are in the middle of a presentation to your regional staff team and it seems to be going well. You have prepared for months and know your stuff. Suddenly, your boss walks in and stands at the back of the room with her arms crossed. A thought pops into your head: "Oh no, what is she doing here?" You fumble your next sentence. Another thought runs through your head: "You idiot - you are screwing up. Your boss is going to think you are useless." You start to sweat. You get through the presentation. People shake your hand and say "great stuff" and although you smile and say thanks, all you are thinking is how you screwed up when your boss walked in.


Sound familiar? Your inner judge has pounded the gavel down and sentenced you harshly. You can't even hear the praise of your colleagues over the sound of the gavel smashing the desk. The decision has been rendered - you blew it!


How do you feel when your inner judge sentences you? A judgment is a black and white statement of criticism that implies a good or bad labeling of your value or worth. Most often our inner judge levels a negative judgment and we end up feeling bad about ourselves. A judgment rarely has the effect of making us feel better or moving us into being more successful. In fact, it usually has the opposite effect, and can undermine us in a nanosecond like the example above. A judgment implies a gavel coming down hard with the verdict rendered. If self-judgment generally makes us feel bad and does nothing to positively further ourselves to betterment, how can we get past that insidious habit?




As always, awareness comes first. Be aware of your capacity to judge yourself and others. Be aware of what situations trigger your inner judge.


Once aware, I suggest adopting an easy and quick method for turning your self-judgments into helpful coaching. That is - rather than self-judgment, think instead about self-assessment. Instead of a judgment of "worth", make an evaluation or assessment of "what is." An assessment is an objective process that is not supporting or categorizing a good/bad point of view, but instead, is noticing, evaluating and then building and moving toward the state or condition you want. An assessment creates freedom and future possibility whereas a judgment closes the door. An assessment keeps the sense of your personal value separate from the evaluation of your functioning or actions.


How to Assess


In the moment:

Take the example at the beginning of this article. As soon as the boss walked in you became aware that your self-judge was getting louder. In that moment - what could have brought you back? Notice that you are judging and as the great Ben Zander advises, simply replace the judging thoughts with observation and say, "How fascinating!" In the example above, you might think "how fascinating that the sight of my boss is causing me to lose confidence."

If your judge persists, firmly acknowledge your self-judge and say, "okay so I am not perfect right now and hey, I will get back to you later."



Look but don't dwell. Acknowledge your screw-up but don't dwell on it. Remember that there is a difference between denial and transcendence!


As you assess, ask yourself some questions:

What happened?

What was good (anything?)

What would I like to improve on next time?

What is really true about the situation?

What will I do differently next time?


Notice as you assess if you begin judging yourself at any point and if so, consciously shift into objective evaluation. Think about how you can improve the next time; draw on your own past experience of success and move into the future from a place of strength and possibility.  

Free Teleseminar: "How to Break the Self-Judging Habit" 

ducksAre you your own worst enemy?  Do you have voices in your head that chatter incessantly and make you doubt yourself, sabotage your efforts, or worse, spew a litany of self-judgment about where you messed up? 


Join me on March 23 for my Birthday Gift to you - a Free Teleseminar that will help you break the self-judging habit.


In this 60 min. teleseminar you will:

*learn the one thing about your inner critic that will forever shift your perspective

*learn how a simple shift in approach will help you break the self-judging habit that leaves you miserable

*learn how to effectively manage your inner voices before, during and after an event



Sat. March 23 

11 am Pacific Daylight Time/2 pm Eastern


*Can't attend live? Don't worry! A replay mp3 recording will be sent out to all registrants.

Lightbulb of the Month

blue lightbulb 

"You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn't worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens."  ~Louise L. Hay


Ready to make some changes this spring/summer? Call me!  

Jan Carley Having a coach to whom you can be accountable, who will inspire, guide, prod and help you leverage your brilliance is a sure-fire way to ensure you achieve the changes you want.  If this is the time for you to seriously invest in your future, please contact me right away for a complimentary 30 min. coaching consultation session. We will focus your thoughts, clarify  your goals, get to know each other and find out if we are the right coaching fit. I do have a few spots for individual one-on-one coaching clients open this spring. Contact me at

Have you downloaded your Bonus 50-page Action Guide yet?

3rd edition of Jan's bookThe 3rd edition of my book, Harmony from the Inside Out, a hit with singers and non-singers alike, is now on sale and comes with a Bonus 50-page Action Guide. The Action Guide has new material and exercises, as well as a reprinting of many of the exercises in the book in a convenient full-page format.  If you purchased an earlier version of the book, or purchased it in Kindle format, you may CLICK HERE to download your free bonus Action Guide.


***also on sale in Vancouver, BC, Canada at Book Warehouse, 632 W. Broadway
About Jan

Jan Carley is a Professional Certified Executive Coach credentialed with the International Coach Federation. She is passionate about inspiring highly-motivated individuals and high-achieving teams to realize their signature brilliance and focus their energies to achieve a leading edge of excellence.  Jan combines creativity and positive, action-based possibility thinking to support and guide this transformative change through her signature harmony from the inside out coaching approach. Jan lives in Vancouver, B.C., Canada, and is available for individual and team coaching, workshops, and speaking engagements worldwide. ICF logo

Contact Jan at 604 873-1763  email:


Quick Links
Jan's Coaching Company Creative Coaching Group
Jan's work with BarbershoppersInner Coach of Barbershop
Jan's popular bookHarmony From the Inside Out
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