The monsters! Of doom!
Oh the monsters. Even when we know they’re being mean because it’s the only way they know to keep us safe, it’s no fun when they show up.
They do their best to keep us stuck and feeling terrible about ourselves. They use petrifying fear to convince us that we are bad at what we are doing and behind on everything else. They nag. They loom. They are not awesome.
Their whole thing is doom doom doom. Of doom!
(Everything is bad! And about to get worse! And it’s all our fault. Etc. See? The worst.)
When we avoid or ignore them or fight them, they just get louder and more insistent.
But when we interact with them skillfully, weird and useful transformations happen:
sometimes they disappear — poof
sometimes they turn into fuzzball companions
sometimes they get a promotion to a job that’s actually useful
and sometimes they turn into Negotiators and help you interact with other monsters…
Which is awesome, except that the process of talking to them is also scary, hard and uncomfortable.
Talking to monsters is generally not super appealing, for good reasons.
Getting started is hard. Knowing what to say is hard. Trusting that it might actually work is sometimes impossible.
Especially since they are of the [extremely vocal] opinion that there’s no point anyway!, which is one of their favorite and most convincing opinions.
And also that this is silly and you have better things to do with your time!
And in addition to that why are you reading this page when you have things to do?!?!?!?!
And sometimes when we talk to them, they say mean and hurtful things which we believe, and then we get even more stuck, so of course it’s scary to interact, totally understandable.
Yup. Sounds like the monsters.
That’s pretty much why the Monster Coloring Book (of doom!) is the most genius thing in the entire world.
It helps you identify what they say and why they say it (and how to know when it’s them talking and not you).
And then it tells you exactly what to say to them so they will stop bugging you. Plus coloring! Fun.
“I was so surprised that it actually included a colouring book!
Seriously, I thought it was just a name. But I’m so glad it wasn’t.
Colouring in a monster is now totally on my list of quick ways to press the reset button: it’s hard to not make a shift while you’re trying to decide whether a particular monster’s fur should be pink or green.
And the manual — so much smartness! It’s like having someone RIGHT THERE with you to walk you through the tricksy realm of monster conversations.”
PRIVATE! DO NOT READ! FOR BRITISH EYES ONLY! SORRY, FOR MONSTER EYES ONLY!
Dear loudest monster of the person currently reading this page,
It’s me, Havi. I just want you to know that no one is going to try and disappear you.
We are not out to get you.
We are not going to stomp on you or crush you or try to make you go away. I promise.
I know your person sometimes wants to get rid of you, and you’re possibly feeling anxious that if you let them have a coloring book, they’ll use it in some sneaky way to destroy you.
And I know that it is vital to you to do your job and keep your person stay safe and protected. And I appreciate that. I also want them to be safe and protected. I also want them to be okay, just like you.
And maybe you think that by scaring them out of interacting with you, it’s better that way. If you can just keep them terrified enough, they won’t ever pursue the things they want which might bring pain or Consequences That Must Be Avoided.
That’s a really lovely thing to want for someone.
Except that your person — the one you’ve dedicated your life to protecting through generating enough fear, fog and stuck that they can’t hurt themselves — is now so stuck that they actually can’t experience the protection you want them to have.
You might think the ends justify the means, but that’s just not always true.
All your person wants is to have a different relationship with you — to figure out together what is needed for them to feel safe and still create. And even though you might think that this bad, I promise it will make it easier for you to do your Protection Job if you agree to let them connect with you.
The coloring book is a translation device.
It’s a way for your person to get what you’re trying to do so they can stop getting in the way of your mission. It’s a way for you to speak the same language.
Plus, coloring! Monsters love coloring!
And even though you, as a monster, also think it’s a waste of time, it’s not and here’s why.
While your person is all distracted with coloring, you can protect them from Doom. And when your person knows how to talk to you, it will be so much easier to keep them safe because they won’t be fighting and resisting your mission.
I know! It’s brilliant. So listen.
Agree to the idea of a coloring book, and I can promise you that there will be no attempted monster-slaying. We’re just going to talk with you.
And ultimately we’re on your side. We believe in your mission even if we have different ideas about tactics.
So can we see how it goes? Worst case, your person will respect you a little more, which also helps your mission of keeping them safe from Even More Doom.
Signed with the greatest respect for your monsterness and your mission,
“I had great results with the Monster Coloring Book and Manual (of doom) at our kids’ Secret Book Club.
Our amazing kids at the Treehouse in Ashland OR were already declaring their Presto Manifestos and making friends with their Power Pets, but some inner and outer obstacles were showing up. I copied a few pages from the Monster Coloring Book and let them choose one that seemed especially Monstrous and sent them home with instructions to talk to their Monster as they colored them in.
The coloring book did the job for me! Each kid came back with a masterpiece and a very useful Monster conversation. Monster Coloring Book + Crayons = Monster Therapy for kids of all ages. Huzzah!”
What the monster coloring book (and manual) is for:
- Have a plan of exactly what to say — and do — when the monsters take over with their doom doom doom of doom.
- Destress and focus quickly when you need to get stuff done (because the monsters prefer that you not get stuff done because then people could judge you and you could fail and it would be the doom of doom).
- Smart tactics that work.
- Counter the guilt when your monsters tell you what a crappy excuse for a person you are.
- Trust that you are capable (without the monster who thinks you’re full of shit or the one who thinks you aren’t living up to your potential or the one who says you could do better if you’d just try.)
- And mainly so you can have a relationship with yourself that isn’t about “self-mastery” or being a constant state of struggle, but a way to interact with yourself that helps you feel safe and supported.
- Also to have practical, down-to-earth ways to deflect whatever your monsters throw at you.
- So you can laugh.
- And have fun coloring.
- And get stuff done.
Why you might need this:
Haha I started thinking about the why, and immediately came up with about twenty reasons but don’t want to list them out here because my monsters think your monsters will just say I’m trying to convince you. And I’m not.
I truly believe in All Timing Right Timing, we get to the stuff we need when we need it, no convincing necessary.
So I think I’m just going to give you the main reason. It’s a little embarrassing but here it is.
Part of my mission (and I say that in complete awareness of how cheesy that sounds but there just isn’t a better way to put it) is to be a really good Negotiator.
It’s a little weird, sure, but I can talk to people’s monsters. And they will talk to me. And I am immune to any of the crazy shit your monsters pull on you.
This ebook + coloring book is a way that I can be your personal monster negotiator without you having to hire me.
“It’s like Havi went inside my head…
It’s like she went in my head, talked with the characters who live there, and returned with this unbelievably useful field guide to help me deal with each monster.
And what better non-threatening way to interact with them than by giving them life through crayons, markers or finger paint?
I use the manual whenever different monsters show up to visit, and always find something to help me get out of the paralysis and stuck. And a way to be playful — really, that shift alone is more than worth the price of admittance.”
Some of the monsters we’ll meet:*
* And by “meet” I mean learn smart, unconventional tactics for dealing with them so they can’t run your life anymore!
The “PUHleeeeeeze, everyone else is doing the thing you want to do better than you ever could so why even bother — really why are you still even thinking about this” monster
The “You don’t want to fail horribly and fall on your face LIKE YOU DID LAST TIME DO YOU REALLY WANT THAT TO HAPPEN AGAIN DO YOU DO YOU DO YOU” monster
The “You’re just going to screw it up like you do everything else” monster
The “There is no time to stop and talk to your monsters and anyway this is all hippie crap HURRY UP NO TIME NO TIME NO TIME” monster
The “Why don’t you look in the mirror you big phony imposter HAVE YOU NO SHAME AT ALL YOU FRAUDULENT WHORE” monster
The “Who do you think you’re kidding, what, you think you’re good enough, believe me you’ll never be good enough” monster
The “YOU WILL FAIL MAKE NO BONES ABOUT IT” monster
The “Why even bother getting out of bed” monster
The “Jeez, would you just get your pathetic lazy ass out of bed already” monster
The “What if you throw a party and nobody shows up” monster
PLUS the Silent Scary Hiding monster and the Monster Who Says That There Are No Such Things As Monsters monster.
“Better communication with my daughter…
I definitely expected the Monster Manual and Coloring Book to be a comforting, helpful, safe way to illuminate my inner shadows — and it is! — but it’s done so much more than that.
My pre-teen daughter and I are using it together to communicate better about scary feelings and dark thoughts. I love how acknowledging our monsters makes them more right-sized, and less scary. Plus, coloring makes everything better!”
The Monster Manual & Coloring Book: What you get
The Basic Package (of doom!)
The Talking To Monsters Monster Coloring Book (of doom!)
- Eleven adorably scary monsters and two bonus monsters.
The Monster Manual (of doom!)
- Eleven monsters. Eleven tactics.
- Two bonus monsters and some bonus tactics.
- In-depth descriptions and very specific examples of how to talk to each one, what to say — and what to do if it doesn’t work.
The Extra-Destuckifying Package (of doom!):
Includes EVERYTHING in the Basic version plus:
Bonus ebook of Useful Stuff to Know about Monsters
- Dictionary of monster expressions.
- Identification tactics: how to know you’re dealing with a monster.
- Other useful things that help you face your monsters without having to fight them (exhausting) or “embrace them” (stressful and/or possibly gross).
Bonus ebook: a super helpful collection of a dozen of my monster-stuckification-related blog posts.
An mp3 recording and chatroom transcript from our group teleclass, in which I answered questions about people’s monsters and dealing with them. The call was on August 22, 2010, and it was wonderful!
p.s. My monsters are (mostly) of the opinion that having a postscript is obnoxious. But my loudest monster says if I don’t, I won’t be able to help anyone and doom doom doom.
So we came to a compromise which is that I am writing a postscript but it doesn’t actually say anything. Phew. Ha.
“It opens up more space. Plus: monster massage!
The best thing about the manual is you don’t have to go all the way into a monster conversation, if that’s intimidating.
I use it as as a field guide to identify my monsters. Just asking “Which genus of monster are you?” takes me out of my stuff. And then I read the ways to respond and just let them percolate. And more space opens up.
Also! I didn’t expect this, but monsters *love* being colored. It’s like a massage for them.”