The Inevitability of Criticism
The inner critic can be one of the least understood parts that we have to help us manage our fear of rejection and emotional pain. The key to overcoming the critic is learning how to show compassion.
It is part of the human experience to interact with criticism, either from those we come into contact with or internal criticism. TS Elliott once stated that criticism is as inevitable as breathing. Many of us have a strong inner critic; in fact, we typically have more than one.
If you have been criticized a lot in life, your inner critic might very well be echoing the comments you received in the past.
This criticism can quickly begin to rule your inner world and cause you to get swept up in a whirlwind of harsh messages and consequent hatred for that part of yourself as you become enmeshed with the bad feelings.
What might be different if you could see yourself through the lens of a compassionate friend? This person understands your history and has endless love for you. This type of lens, the lens of compassion, can decrease the inner critics’ voice.
We have all heard that old biblical expression of loving thy neighbor as thyself, and we forget the “thyself” part as if self-compassion is in opposition to loving thy neighbor.
The introduction of self-compassion can seem so woo-woo, trivial, and even selfish upon implementation. Recognizing that this response is part of the cycle that fuels your inner critic becomes very important. The journey towards self-compassion is a long and windy road for this express reason.
It isn’t simply achieved through a pat on the back or offering yourself a “good job, buddy” because we believe we need the inner critic’s messages to continue to achieve, strive, belong, which actually are an attempt to ensure we don’t activate pain.
The inner critic is attempting to maintain safety and security, which can be very difficult to see.
Understand that the introduction of compassion does not erase criticism; criticism isn’t the ticket; it’s the way we interact with it, use it, and allow it to reinforce beliefs about ourselves.
This is the pattern that we want to begin to address through the use of self-compassion; to create space and realize our agency in deciding how we structure our lives based upon these critiques. Remember, the critic part is not bad; it is not evil. It is simply utilizing distorted means of preventing you from experiencing internal pain.
Paige Keppler, T-LMFT
Marriage & Family Therapist
Paige is truly an insightful
How do I know if I am feeling depressed? This question is one of the top google searches surrounding this topic.Stephanie is truly a gifted therapist. She uses humor, transparency, and compassion to utilizing the strengths within her clients to instill hope and foster...
Stress is a normal part of our lives. That being said, the types of things that cause stress to particular people do vary as well as the manner in which people manage it. Stress can originate from both external sources as well as internally in the manner in which we...
Since Covid 19 has spread across the world, more people are seeking mental health. Unfortunately, the virus has also forced us to think of alternative ways of receiving care beyond the traditional face-to-face appointments. In this video, Pete Campie gives several...
A lot of stress and anxiety comes from not knowing how to manage other people's expectations of us. Too often, we feel like we have to fulfill all these expectations out of fear of letting people down. However, part of developing a complete sense of self is to...
When you are feeling the feelings of love, it seems like nothing wrong could happen. Unfortunately for our society, when this feeling dissipates, our loyalty tends to fade. To truly thrive in a marriage, you will need more than just the feeling of love. Learn more...
Trust is one of the most important qualities every committed relationship must have. Learn how to build and maintain trust.
There are many emotions we feel when we break up with a loved one. Learn about one of the essential components that can help you heal.
A lot of couples have a hard time staying calm during arguments. This can lead to bitterness and resentment. This article seeks to help couples to remain calm during fights.
Research has shown that we are increasingly more stressed out and filled with more anxiety. Learn what you can do to help yourself or a loved one.
Doing therapy with both teens and their fathers can be very difficult. There are many ways to do this type of counseling wrong, but Brandon shows exactly what needs to be done to overcome the difficulties