I don’t know how many times I’ve heard the saying, “Everyone is a critic” and I’ve kinda brushed it off. Thinking about it now, I can say, it’s true we’re all critics. And for me, my biggest critic stares right back at me when I look in the mirror.

Other people may come down hard on me but chances are I’ll pick up on it later coz I’ve already been there by myself.  Sound familiar?

They say you can talk to yourself as long as you don’t answer back. If you don’t answer back, however, the potentially negative thoughts will continue unchallenged and this is more detrimental than being thought of as crazy. Allowing negative self-talk to dominate our minds can lead to low self-esteem, bad habits, depression and other unhealthy results.

So, here are the 6 Ways I use to silence the inner critic.

#1 Not letting pressure get to me

Those who know me well know I don’t like pressure. To avoid it at all costs, I plan well in advance. I like to be proactive and don’t like being reactive or doing things last minute. Sometimes I’ll think things and start creating them, attacking those thoughts as soon as they speak to me.  This is my way of avoiding pressure.

#2 Replace negativity with positive self-talk

When a negative thought is removed something needs to fill its place in my mind so my only option is to exchange a negative for a positive thought. If the negative thoughts can keep me down, then surely the positive ones can lift me up.

#3 Talk to someone

There’s 2 parts to this – there’s talking to a trusted friend and just anybody, could be a stranger.

Talking to a trusted friend

We all have friends we trust certain issues/problems or just life in general. My friends, I’d like to say they’re carefully chosen, but I think they’ve fitted in well in my life such that I know who to talk to about what. Whoever I trust with an issue, I explain the situation that made me feel so bad and I allow them to console, counsel and challenge that thought. If it’s a negative thought pattern that is condemning me, chances are by the end of discussion I’ll be feeling better because they’d have talked sense or reminded me of good things.

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Talking to just anyone

I find sometimes negative self-talk doesn’t need to be shared. Sometimes I just need time, or to get out of the zone or situation and do something different. A phone call to a friend to discuss something else or even a conversation with a random stranger at the park could have me feeling better about myself.

#4 Count my blessings

This is similar to counting positives. What have I done right or what’s great about my life? Counting my blessings – family, life, work, health etc, before I know it, I don’t feel bad anymore.

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#5 Accept my imperfections

Acceptance is not surrender! A few people I know live by the theory “never admit you’re wrong”. I don’t know about you but I loathe this theory. I admit when I’m wrong and I also accept my imperfections (but I don’t let them hinder me). I know my limitations. Although sometimes I’ll try overcome them, I still know where/when to stop. To avoid disappointment, I say love yourself for who you are – the good, the bad, the ugly and the peculiar. Use the skills you’re strong in, i.e focus on your strengths not weaknesses.  My strengths are actually good enough for me to make a change in today’s life.

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#6 Being realistic

If you’re like me, you probably have people in your life who take things simply or are relaxed about things you want to be serious about.  You tell them something and they laugh or brush it off saying something like “it’s not that bad”! Rings a bell?

Well, so for me before I carry on with my thinking of negative self-talk, I’ll ask myself, “was the situation as bad as I imagined it”. Maybe I’m exaggerating the story because of the negatives churning in my mind. I take a realistic look at myself and put things into perspective.

So if you think negative, don’t let that negative voice in your head overshadow your actual voice. Speak the truth and change your circumstances.

Practise the above till it becomes a habit to change negative thoughts. Read my article on Habits and Determination / Willpower for some other tips.

Can you relate to any of this? If so, in what way? Would love to hear your thoughts…

#teeshares #countyourblessings #berealistic

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32 thoughts on “Too Hard on Yourself? 6 Ways to Silence Your Inner Critic

  1. Great advice! It’s so easy to get swooped into the negativity once things start going outside of how you want them to. And these are definitely good tips on how to get out of that funk too!

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    • I understand Yuliya. That’s why one of my personal tips is talking to someone even if it’s not about the matter. From personal experience, sometimes I just need to get out of the zone. I don’t always need someone to help or discuss something with but maybe take a break from something x

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  2. I love this! I’ve been trying to do the negative thought exchange with a positive thought. Somehow I find it calming? I don’t know I feel like it’s actually working in not stressing myself out too much and staying calm

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    • Glad to hear Jacque. It works from a “taking care of yourself” point of view. Focussing on the positives definitely calms the mind. It’s good to change our thinking process that way. 🙂

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    • Hi Vibeke, you’re right it’s hard not letting pressure get to us – we’re human. It shows we care/love and are concerned about doing things right or something alike. But we can change how we view pressure, and how we view ourselves. Hopefully the more you practice the above, the more you’ll feel better about yourself especially when pressure gets to you 🙂

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  3. One thing I’m learning is that we’re our own worst enemy and I’m always optimistic and positive, but I just always remember to love myself. I always remember this and that God would never leave me nor forsake me, when I feel like I’m getting overly critical or negative. Good post 🙂

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  4. Great advice. I am pretty hard on myself. It was one time that one of my friends told me something that stuck with me. I found that it was so helpful to talk to her, she really helped me ease off on myself.

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  5. This is awesome! There are so many good tips and tools to help those struggling with this in your post. I myself have struggled with being too hard on myself for a long time, and not until I began helping myself did I see how hindering it was! Great post, and a great reminder for everyone to pat themselves on the back sometimes 🙂

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