Do you know your leadership communication superpower?

Whether you call it your saboteur, sabotaging voice, or inner critic, we have all fallen prey to our critical internal voice. There’s so much literature about the effect of ignoring that internal voice, and today, we’re switching things up and giving you tips and strategies to confront that voice head-on and reclaim your power. 

In my conversation this week, my guest, Sarah Benenson Goldberg, breaks down how to manage your sabotaging voice and the importance of having a vision for yourself. 

Sarah is a seasoned consultant, coach, and communication expert focusing on developing influential and high-performing leaders who want to thrive in complex global environments. A former Director at The Walt Disney Company and founder of West Coast Advantage, an advertising sales firm, Sarah brings a unique blend of strategic and empathetic insight to her clients’ roles as leaders. With a commitment to growing the whole person, Sarah supports clients in heightening self-awareness while embracing strengths and uncovering potential blind spots. Her coaching process focuses on adopting the mindset of a leader and evolves to include leadership behaviors, communication skills, and strategic thinking. As a communication expert, Sarah works with leaders to hone executive presence, craft influential messages and prepare for high-stakes meetings or keynotes for virtual and in-person environments. 

In this episode, Sarah shares: 

● How to ensure you’re always moving closer to your vision.

 ● Why our innate abilities, according to the Myers Briggs assessment tool, don’t change.

 ● A step-by-step framework for identifying your sabotaging voice and how to shift disempowering thoughts to more empowering ones.

 ● Why perfectionism is ultimately holding you back from achieving your big goals. The most important takeaway from our conversation is that confronting your sabotaging voice starts with awareness of your thoughts and feelings that generate your behaviors. Being a leader starts with doing the internal work first. 

Here’s the episode at a glance:

 ● [02:09] There’s a big distinction between having a vision and a plan, and everything starts with the vision.

 ● [10:13] Myers Briggs captures the most innate and authentic you, and deep down inside your core, you don’t change.

 ● [12:57] Everyone, men and women, young and old, have a sabotaging voice, and the best way to deal with it is to manage it. And it all starts with raising that voice to intense consciousness and noticing what happens in your body when your sabotaging voice speaks up. Some people clench their jaws; others have a drop in their stomachs. Those physical cues are a reminder that the sabotaging voice is present.

 ● [19:03] One of the questions is, how do you know when you’ve gotten to perfect? Do you have a checklist? The first piece is to recognize there is no such thing as perfect.

 ● [20:44] Often, we hold ourselves back from offering an idea or opinion because we’re so worried about being judged. We forget that whether the idea is good or bad, or somewhere in the middle, it’s often a springboard for somebody else’s idea.

 ● [23:54] Recognizing your sabotaging voice starts with being familiar with the themes that come up. Someone might want to be liked, while another’s theme might be perfectionism. Notice the mantras that are being chanted in your head and the thoughts you’re telling yourself.

 ● [25:12] Your saboteur only lives in the past and future, not in the present. When you keep telling yourself, “Oh, I shoulda, coulda, woulda. If only I had done that, or why was I so stupid?” The future is “What if this happens? What if they don’t like me? What if I fail?” It’s all the what-ifs. When you are in the present, the saboteur doesn’t live there. Bring yourself to the present; literally, put your feet on the floor and feel the weight of your feel. Put your hand where you’re feeling the tension of your clenched jaw or your stomach dropping.

 ● [28:33] Confidence and empowerment is the greatest tool to back our saboteur. That’s inaccurate when people say they don’t have a sabotaging voice. They’re feeling good about themselves; they feel confident. They do not remember what it feels like when their sabotaging voice shows up.

 ● [33:06] Having a vision is critical. It doesn’t have to be well-formed. It’s just a vision you always want to be moving towards.

 ● [35:43] Oftentimes, our sabotaging voice stops us from having a vision. It might be saying, “Oh, you could never do that.”


Connect with Sarah at to learn more about the work that she and her team of coaches do. 

If you’re interested in Sarah’s leadership program, click the link for more information:

Found the episode helpful? Please share it with other leaders who’ll benefit from the impactful conversation. I know they’ll thank you. 

Connect with your host, Kele: 



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