Develop your Inner Critique [use the nay for your yay]

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Were you ever about to do something – and then suddenly, that voice inside your head starts talking?

Why did you do that? You will embarrass yourself. No one will like it.

What kinda crazy are you?

You will never achieve anything in life.

Have you ever heard that voice in your head? That is your inner critic. That negative voice inside your head judges, criticizes, and demeans you.

Your inner critic derails your development. But it does not have to stop it.

Change your mindset instead of allowing your inner critique to stunt your growth and eat away at your self-esteem. Instead, use self-criticism to practice rationalism and proactively circumvent any obstacles that may interfere in your life.

When your inner critic whispers discouragement, think. How can you challenge this thinking? What is she trying to tell me? If it is a warning, plan for the obstacle and move ahead.

Follow these strategies to deal with your inner critic and take control of your life:

Your Human

Remind yourself that everyone has an inner critic. Having an inner critic is a human function. It comes from the parts of our brain that evolved to protect ourselves. If you find yourself in a loop of critical thoughts, remind yourself that every human experiences self-doubt at one point or another.


When negative thoughts come up, acknowledge your views. Try to understand the source of where your ideas:

How old do I feel right now?

Why do I feel this way?

What are some patterns I recognize?

Where do these thoughts stem?

How do these thoughts affect my behavior?

Think of Others

What advice would you give a friend? If a friend came to you in the same situation as you feel, what advice would you give them? So many times, we are harder on ourselves than we are with others.

Get Real

Separate facts from feelings. Practice sorting through facts and your feelings.

What is another, more positive way you could look at the situation?

Choose Self-Love

Practice self-acceptance and self-compassion. Replace negative or critical thoughts with accepting and compassionate ones. Have a selection of empowering, human beliefs that you can tell yourself instead of succumbing to negative ones.

Create your personal compliment jar.

Remember Your Good

 Focus on your strengths.

Distract yourself when you start replaying mistakes in your head. Have you ever made a mistake and replayed those moments over and over again? That doesn’t resolve the issue. If you find you’re ruminating instead of actively problem-solving, distract yourself from those thoughts.

Talk Back

Your inner critic does not have to control your life! Taking the steps above to silence your inner critic, nurture a more empowering internal dialogue, and expand your horizons. Above all, Have an open dialogue with your inner critique; when she asks you why ask her why not?

Life Skills

Practice your life skills with tools and tactics from the Mavens 101 Resource Center.
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