They say, “nobody likes a critic.” While this phrase is specifically directed at food and movie critics, this sentiment transcends to interpersonal relationships. Research shows that individuals with an overly critical partner are more likely to end their relationship. This shows how powerful negative statements, or nagging, is.
While listening to critics from outside sources is paralyzing, it’s far worse when that negative voice is in your head. Being self-critical, or too hard on yourself, is one of the leading causes of depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem. Although we want to hold ourselves to a higher level, we don’t want to be so critical that we’re moved to inaction or depression. Therefore, it’s wise to get a firm hold on your inner critic so as to increase your happiness.
If you find yourself constantly putting yourself down, check out these five tips that will help you shut down your inner critic for good.
Self-affirmations are powerful. They’re like miniature pep talks that are designed to increase your self-esteem. By repeating four or five qualities about yourself that you appreciate, you’re teaching your brain to switch from negative self-talk to positive. Some solid examples of affirmations are:
- I appreciate my ability to see the positive in others
- I am strong and capable
- I am in control of how I react
Either state or write your strengths daily. Your inner critic will soon diminish.
Re-shift Your Focus
It’s so easy to focus on what we’re not good at. By doing so, we’re essentially setting ourselves up for failure. Instead of focusing so much on what we dislike about ourselves, switch the narrative or tone. For example, if you say: “I am so lazy, I’ll never be able to lose weight” you’re discrediting your strength. However, if you switch the theme to, “I am going to work on becoming more active” you’re taking control of your actions.
Learn how to turn your negative thoughts into an opportunity. You’ll surely see a major change in how you view yourself.
Do Things You’re Good At
The best way to shut down your inner critic is to start by doing things you know you’re good at. This will help to build your self-confidence and give you the energy needed to take on different challenges.
Being kind to yourself is one of the best ways to silence an inner critic. This means taking a break when you need a break, saying no to unhealthy obligations, and giving yourself the opportunity to fail. The art of self-care is one of the best ways to be kind to yourself. Groom yourself regularly, eat well, and get plenty of sleep. Indulge when you can and lived a balanced life. Once you begin enjoying life, you’ll have the confidence needed to keep going with ease.
Eliminate Toxic People
If you’re constantly surrounded by negative people, their narrative will soon become yours. You may even begin viewing yourself with a critical eye. Surround yourself with those who inspire and invigorate your energy. This will help you to silence your inner critic and begin to see yourself in a positive light.
In addition, keeping company with negative people is draining, You may find yourself with little-to-no energy left to care for yourself. Remove yourself from toxic people and you’ll begin to see the benefits.
Shutting down your inner critic is key to living up to your potential. It also increases your quality of life. Make it a habit to speak kindly to yourself and you’ll begin to notice an immediate boost of confidence.