It’s amazing how mean we can be to ourselves.
The inevitable truth about your full-time inner critic is it knows your biggest weaknesses and darkest secrets. As a result, it only takes one nasty phrase from your inner commentator to bring out the worst in you.
It doesn’t matter how successful, kind, giving or loving you are. The part that judges you tends to ignore the good. It gains strength when you buy into its awful statements and it thrives when you act in self-defeating ways after it attacks your hope or character. The more your actions are dictated by your inner critic, the more influence it has over you in the future.
The benefits of soothing your inner critic
I’m going to offer you a simple, yet powerful way to give a chill pill to that unforgiving voice in your head. This suggestion will help you build a more understanding inner dialogue that has the power to neutralize the negative effects of your inner voice’s judgments against yourself and other people.
By improving your ability to soothe your inner critic, you’re likely to enjoy the following benefits:
- Your anger will spoil fewer moments of your life.
- You’ll kill fewer brain cells. Yes, venomous self-hate and giant anger outbursts kill cells in your body.
- You’ll find yourself applying this technique to the way you judge others, which will make your personality more magnetic because you’ll appear more likable and approachable to others.
- You’ll feel more at ease knowing that you have a technique at your disposal for taming the angry beast inside you.
What I’m about to tell you has worked quite well for thousands of New Yorkers, especially people who specifically needed assistance with anger management or chronic depression, but it can help anyone. So here it is, the best way to be nicer to yourself (and the people you love).
There I go judging again
Every time you catch yourself in the midst of self-judgment, say in your mind or out loud, “There goes [insert your name] judging again.”
The goal is to repeat this every time you notice yourself judging inward or outward. I promise you that after 30 instances of hearing yourself say this, you’ll feel the difference. Let me show you how to apply this technique to self-directed, mental daggers.
Example #1 – Shutting Down Self-Judgment
Let’s say you were just laid off from your job. Whether you were hoping for this outcome or not, your inner critic is probably going to have a field day with this.
Every time you begin to belittle yourself about losing your job, stop everything and say, “Upppp, here I go judging again.”
Example #2 – Shutting Down Outward Judgment
Don’t forget to apply this technique to your judgment of other people — strangers, family, friends, coworkers, teachers or your long-term partner — give them (and yourself) a break. For example, you’re at a party and someone you don’t know is ranting about why one political candidate is better than another. You completely disagree with him and you begin to feel the urge to put him in his place and shut him down by disproving every point he’s making.
If you’re passionate about politics, you’re probably not going to stop yourself from hating him in your mind, but you can neutralize the negative effects of hate on your brain by saying to yourself, “Upppp, there I go judging again!”
Why is this simple technique so effective?
Because it allows you to practice putting distance between you and your judgments, thereby suppressing some of the negative effects of the judgment.
Know that when you judge, you lose.
There’s no winning in judgment. Judgment makes people depressed and unhappy. In fact, if you think about the most unlikable person you know, I bet he or she loves to judge people. Don’t be that person. Give your mind and body a break.
The key to the success of this simple, but potent technique is to commit to doing it as much as possible. When regular practice is combined with a true appreciation of it’s benefits to your health and happiness, you’ll begin to transform your inner critic into a less punishing entity.
You must understand that the price you pay for judgment is not worth it. Even if the only message you get from this piece is that judgment kills, I will feel like I did my job. Tell me, what did you get out of letting that judgment hijack your mood? Ok, you might be able to prove him wrong, but there’s no winning.
Judgments aren’t wins
You’re not going to stop judging, but you can influence the impact that judgment has on your health and happiness. Judgments aren’t wins. They are losses that can ruin your life. Bitterness builds over time like mental plaque, which is the result of tens of thousands of heavy judgments.
Judgments aren’t wins. They are losses that can ruin your life. Bitterness builds over time like mental plaque, which is the result of tens of thousands of heavy judgments. People who feel like the world owes them something are usually the biggest judges and believe me, their health will suffer as a result of their unchecked judgment.
I must credit Dr. Peter Reznik with inspiring me to apply this technique to my work with patients and to my own life. Believe me, this easy hack can make a huge difference in your life!
Featured photo credit: Photo Credit: Bigstock via bigstock.com