We can be our worst critic. This is because we naturally have a negative bias towards ourselves. This means we give more weight to our flaws, mistakes and shortcomings than our successes. This self criticism can take a toll on our minds and bodies. It can lead to continuous thoughts that interfere with our productivity and health.
Basically, beating yourself up does not support growth, motivation and positive change. We need to develop an approach of self compassion and a willingness to let go of what is holding us back and weighing us down.
So how do we do this?
The first step is to make the choice that you will at least try to be nicer to yourself. Commit to treating yourself more kindly by letting go of self judgment, go easy on yourself and practice self compassion.
The next step is to meet your criticism with kindness. If your inner critic says, ‘You’re lazy and not worthy,’ respond with ‘You’re doing your best’ or ‘You're more than enough.’
The last step is the most important step if you want self compassion. It is to make a deliberate, conscious effort to recognise the difference between how you feel when caught up in self criticism, and how you feel when you can let go of it.
Try to think about it this way - how much better might you feel if you take a deep breath after making a mistake, rather than berating yourself? Then think to yourself what would you say to a friend if they were in the same situation?
If a friend said, ‘I’m feeling lazy and not worthy.’ You wouldn’t be hard and mean to them, you would be kind and helpful. You would explain that they are enough and they did their best.
Treat yourself as you would a best friend and don’t be so hard on yourself.
Be kind to yourself as you deserve your love too!