We all have that ‘inner critic’ voice that whispers in our minds –
- You’re not good enough
- You’re a fraud
- If they really knew who you were
- You didn’t give enough
- You didn’t try hard enough
Then It Happens – Someone Criticizes Us !
Maybe it was a nasty comment in person – or something written in the virtual online world.
I’ve had a few of those.
Here is a truth to consider: The more we put ourselves out in the world with whatever gifts or skills we wish to share, the more there is going to be pushback by someone out there.
One of the mind traps is believing we have to ‘change’ their opinion of us.
We may engage in some battle of logic, or defend, or excuse, or even worse – ’apologize’ in order to appease the other person, to make them feel better.
The ‘outer critic’ can trigger our ‘inner critic’ voice.
Then we slip into buying into what was said just enough to activate our own “I’m not good enough” inner critic voice.
Then that inner critic voice takes over and repeats back to us again and again what was said – aligning with the outer critic as an ally against us.
Our own mind does this to us.
We end up hurting ourselves more because of the negative repetition in our own heads than the person who made the comment.
PATTERN INTERRUPT …..
When you catch yourself aligning with a negative criticism, ask yourself :
Who do I wish to ‘BE’ dealing with this criticism?
The ‘Being’ part is a great focus.
Do you wish to be a victim? i.e. Poor me?
Do with wish to be ‘how dare they and I’ll show them’ kind of person?
Do you with be ‘revengeful’, ‘resentful’, or fearful?
There is no one right question or answer.
But one that I consider helpful is:
How Can I – BE – The Person That – I Can Respect?
There have been situations that were messy, painful, frustrating, disappointing, even fearful, but focusing on ‘who do I wish to – BE – so that I can gain my own self-respect gave a positive direction and way out of my own mindset trap.
Sometimes it might be making some adjustments.
Sometimes it might be taking responsibility.
Sometimes it might be learning a valuable lesson.
Sometimes it might be letting go – and walking away.
Whatever the decision was, it gave me a sense of self-respect for how I handled myself overall. I didn’t act perfectly – but it was far better than getting caught in the outer and inner critic’s mind trap which can lead to actions that later we regret.
Gaining my own ‘Self-Respect’ ended up being far more satisfying than ever gaining my ‘critics respect’.