How you talk to yourself is extremely important. Often we are not aware of this, but it is common to have a critical inner voice evaluating ourselves harshly and disproportionately in situations, being overgeneralizing in a judgmental and destructive way:
“how stupid of me…” “Can’t you do anything right…” “Are you for real…” “Idiot…”
Definitely not on the level we talk to friends, colleagues and hopefully not to anyone else (never to children, I pray). We are not our actions! You might have problems with an inner critic if you had problems accepting fully your positive traits when you read them aloud to yourself in last week’s exercise.
Instead try this: Every time you say something critical to yourself or about yourself – immediately respond with something more self-supportive: “I did my best” “I will do better/consider that next time” “I am not in control of all aspects of the situations” “my intentions were good/constructive”. It will work in due time even if you do not believe it. Yes, it eventually will!
If this is difficult – try by changing perspective: What would you say to your child or a close friend who are too self-critical and you heard them say that about themselves? Often we are kinder to others, but we will also benefit by being that to ourselves.
In terms of identity this exercise will aid the process of breaking free from an inner critic by transforming the critical voice that at present is ego-syntonic (ideas that are acceptable to the self; that are compatible with one’s values and ways of thinking) to becoming ego-dystonic (thoughts and behaviors that are felt to be repugnant, distressing, unacceptable or inconsistent with one’s self-concept) by sowing seeds of doubt.
#selfesteemexercise #selfcompassion #positivetraits #selfhelp #psychologicalwellbeing #selfidentity