In my personal coaching, I often talk about the various personalities that reside in our heads and actively work to impede our progress. Here’s my take on the inner troll...
If you don’t know the story of the Three Billy Goats Gruff then you might like to read it here.
It seems like no matter what we do these days there is a troll blocking the way, doing what it can to stop us from crossing the bridge to greener pastures. Trolls can be family or friends who belittle our efforts to change and are unsupportive of our ideas. The supermarket with its chocolate displayed next to the checkout can act as a troll. Of course the internet is teeming with trolls who are just itching to tell us all about how wrong and stupid we are.
But none of these trolls hold anywhere near the sort of power of our own inner trolls; the voice in our head telling us that we are too weak, too hopeless and not worthy of success. The voice that just wants to remind us of all our past shortcomings and point out all the reasons why success will remain out of reach with this latest attempt. The inner troll will do everything in its power to slap you down and make you believe that you are a lost cause. You shall not cross the bridge, the greener pastures are not for you.
The troll is just a part of our subconscious that has become used to the way things are and is scared of stepping out into the unknown. Of course you can tell by the troll’s negative demeanour that he is not at all happy with the status quo, but life is already hard enough without having to add the discomfort of change into the mix. Change is the enemy of the troll, progress and difference strike fear into the heart.
For most, the motto of the Three Billy Goats Gruff is that we shouldn’t be too greedy. The troll could’ve had a good feed if he settled for the little or medium goat but he got greedy, waited for the big fella and got his butt kicked! I look at it differently - the troll is never going to step aside and allow us to cross the bridge over to the lush paddock. The troll wants you to stay on your side of the bridge. Making small incremental changes (sending the little goat first) won’t move him either, he doesn’t care about the little changes because they aren’t really moving the comfort zone. The troll is there to stop any efforts at real change. Only the big goat can bring a force that he can’t handle. Extreme results require extreme actions, we need to take big steps that will quickly build momentum and become an unstoppable force for change.
The inner troll is big, angry, mean and strong. You can become the big billy goat.