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Taming the inner critic

We all aspire to be the best versions of ourselves but what happens when our inner critic takes over? When we become self-critical, we begin to overanalyze our own behaviors in that a way that devalues our overall sense of self. In therapy, we often spend time creating awareness around problematic thoughts or behaviors to insinuate change. We can all be critical of ourselves from time to time which often influences our negative self-talk. We have all been there, right? Our inner dialogue can be calm, friendly, and encouraging but sometimes negative thoughts about ourselves sneak in.

Psychology says we, as humans, have many sub personalities. These sub personalities are parts of us that form in a response to various experiences we have had in our lives. Think of sub personalities as parts of ourselves that make us up. During times of need, each sub personality comes out to protect or guide us during tough times. Each sub personality has its own set of values, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors but which ever one we resonate with the most is the one that shines through us every day.

You may be asking yourself, what do sub personalities and our inner critic have in common? Your inner critic makes up one of those personalities. Individuals who are overly self-critical may:

1. Blame themselves for everything even if it is not their fault

2. Often compare themselves to others

3. Have a difficult time accepting compliments

4. Often participate in black and white thinking

5. Avoid taking risks

Taming the inner critic

There are many ways to tame the inner critic. Here are a few techniques below:

1. Create awareness and catch your inner critic in the act.

Notice what you are saying to yourself and when you start to become self-critical.

2. Thoughts are not always reality.

Are you able to find tangible evidence to support this negative thought? Are you observing this thought and not considering all the facts?

3. Name the inner critic.

When you name your inner critic, it helps the critic lose power which helps us acknowledge that we are not the problem.

4. Practice acceptance of self.

Learn to embrace who you are and support the inner dialogues that empowers your sense of self and purpose.


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