All of us have negative inner voices in our heads that critique us and convince us to believe in lies that limit our potential. Yet, despite how convincing these false convictions may seem, we must make an attempt to ignore these voices because otherwise, it creates a constant negative feedback loop by telling us that we “can’t” do something or that we’ll “fail”.
So, here are 5 things you can do in order to rise above our inner critic for good.
- Rephrase your inner voice – When you find yourself buying into your inner critic’s statements such as “What is wrong with me?” or “I can’t do anything right”, rephrase it to positive, supportive affirmations such as “I am trying my best” or “It’s okay not be perfect.” This will help put things in perspective and reduce limiting beliefs.
- Start journaling - Journaling is an excellent way to track your thoughts and feelings to better understand your inner experience. Give yourself permission to write down all of your thoughts and feelings as they emerge. Then, consider where these feelings come from and why you might be having them. Reflecting on what you have written may help you to find a moment of truth that can help silence your inner critic.
- Separate fact from fiction - Remember not to accept everything you think as a fact simply because they’re only perceptions about yourself that you’re internally making. Instead, observe your thoughts and ask yourself if they genuinely seem truthful or not. This can help you separate fact from fiction when your inner voice is criticizing you and increase self-confidence.
- Be your own best friend – Just like you would support a close friend in a similar situation, give your own self advice the way you would do for them. This often acts as a reality check of how hard we’re being on ourselves and serves as a reminder to treat ourselves better.
- Take care of yourself – Taking care of your body and mind is a sign of self-love. It’s hard for an inner critic to have a voice in your head when you’re capitalizing on this. Try repeating positive affirmations daily as these can bolster self-esteem, leaving little room for negativity.
While the steps above are an easy and systematic guide on how to rise above your inner critic, don’t forget that it’s not going to be easy or perfect from the beginning. Remember to implement these practices daily and if you find yourself swayed away by your inner critic, remember that it's only normal! The primary goal is to be consistent with these practices which, over months or years, lessens the power of your inner critic and grows self-assurance.