Confront Your Inner Critic
Four strategies for developing your inner coach and countering your inner critic.
“You’ve been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” — Louise Hay
Every person has an inner critic.
The inner critic is a combination of voices picked up through the years. It can be harsh and judgmental. It is the manifestation of a relative or someone who left a lasting impression.
Does any of this sound familiar?
You are SO bad!
You are such a LOSER!
Why do you even bother?!
You have the WORST luck!
You will NEVER be good enough!
Of course you screwed that up AGAIN!
I’ve heard all of these criticisms and more from people I coach. My inner critic tells me the same things. Frankly, it’s exhausting.
Your inner critic must no longer berate you for every single imperfection. It must start nurturing you. It must start encouraging you. It must be countered with your inner coach.
Practice the following strategies deliberately:
1. Analyze where each voice of the inner critic is coming from. Is it Mom or Dad? Is it a past teacher? It certainly isn’t you! Once identified, you can more easily dismiss it as nonsense.
2. Challenge each voice of the inner critic. Am I really that bad? Of course not! Am I a loser for making one mistake? Heck no! Hey critic... STUFF IT!
3. Don’t take the voices seriously when they criticize. You know they’re blowing every action out of proportion. They’re trying to throw you off your game. Don’t fall for it!
4. For every criticism, give yourself a positive message. When your inner critic asks why you even bother, respond with your inner coach. Say something encouraging. You’ll naturally gravitate to the soothing words of your inner coach over the inner critic.
Use these strategies to gradually form a supportive inner coach. It will nurture, challenge and inspire. It will also counter the old voices when they try to worm their way back in.