(If you notice a mistake, you can give me a sign. My English isn’t my native language.)
We often wanna get rid of what seems to be evil or weak in ourselves, what others point out to us. The society we live in has taught us to judge our and others’ deeds. However that way we don’t save ourselves further negative self-appraisal comments, and usually we’re not conscious how much the inner critic hurts our inner child. Simultaneously we can’t forget about our own unfavorable sides, because we notice them every day and every night. An inherent element is to change thinking, especially that we don’t know how to deal with own darkness which bothers us. Then today about two things which help me and can help you with better handling not great things which are connected with us.
The advantage of disadvantages is that when we show our true disadvantages, other people have a chance to see us authentic and face it, and that way we can see who really like us and not masks which we put on. There’s often that people around like our superficiality, and they like, of course, gaining gains of our nice behavior. But when we put the masks aside, we can see how many “friends” drops out, so expressing our “disadvantages” turns out to be good because it sorts things out. Obviously, it’s hard when we feel that we lose even those insincere people, there appear disappointment. We can experience something that we’re deadly scare of, we discover that actually we don’t have anybody, anybody who stands behind us.
Although the society used to judge us, it happens also that people don’t mind certain our disadvantages. A part of them don’t even notice our missteps. We’re the ones who are focus on them the most. And we often over-emphasize meaning of those weaknesses. We look for evidence that something is wrong with us, we poke holes in everything. We don’t accept that “evil” in ourselves. We don’t want it. And we’re so imperfect…
And with that kind of thinking comes further thinking: “if I have disadvantages, I am a bad person” and “something’s wrong with me”. More and more you’re against yourself, against the person who you are. And you bear this burden, you focus on it increasingly, reducing yourself to only the disadvantages. Maybe you even help others from time to time, perhaps you paint, track science news with curiosity, ride a horse, cook healthy pastries or learn to gain straight A’s in college or something, but you’re still not good enough for yourself.
Coming into contact with disadvantages in the reality…
My old acquaintance sometimes made a so-called “stupid” mistake in her drawings, after that she was ripping sheets of paper up due to for example disproportion between head of character and its torso. She was frustrated because of she wasn’t painting perfect pictures with perfect symmetry and every great flourish of pencil, and according to her the whole work sucked.
If it comes to picking on shortcomings, I was good at it during my school years. I used to point out to myself that I made a little mistake on the exam and instead appreciate that I got an A-minus (or B-plus), I was exaggerating the minus (due to that perception I was self-appreciation-starved by years). Now, over time, I don’t pay attention to grades from school, because I’ve already realized that they haven’t provided me good coping with myself or with the world. The grades judged by teachers who actually have never know me – what can they say about my true knowledge? And about how hard it was to me to learn history to get “D”? Therefore my inner critic worked long time for nothing, without sense…
And listen, how can anything work out, if all which we say to ourselves are critical words? This is like driving with handbrake on, so how can we move and not to torture ourselves? In this context the handbrake on is continuous pressure for productivity, lack of appreciation yourself from yourself, lack of praise, leaving yourself in all those skills, in all this living. This is forcing yourself to improvement outside while there’s something that doesn’t work inside. But more about self-relation will be in another post.
So what to do?
- Change thinking and transfer accent on what is good in you and cherish it. It doesn’t have to be a skill. It can be your good heart, creativity, curiosity about something, determination, willingness to change the world for the better, passion for discovering the world.
- Are you creative? Create something. Anything you want (anything that doesn’t hurt you nor others) and go for it, follow it, build it. Devote your energy and time to it, and not to thinking how much imperfect you are. Get involved.
Maybe you’d like to try to make Christmas or any other decorations? Perhaps you rather prefer to do an science experiment by yourself? Or in a group? Or how about taking interest in healthier food and preparing low-calorie meals?
- Wanna improve our world? There are so many things to do! You can show up in volunteering, gain some experience in helping others in some fields you think you like as for example tutoring kids in math or something. You can also focus on gaining theoretical knowledge about the topic you enjoy, finances, cars, gardening or whatever you like. Who knows, maybe you’ll become some kind of counselor in the future or you’ll perhaps publish a pretty good book 🙂
However, remember that you don’t have to do thing with the concept of doing this to the end of your life or doing this as a future paid job. Just, different things are worth experimenting and knowing, because when you experience something, you get to know what you think and feel about it, and thanks that you get to know yourself and therefore you can make further decisions on the basis of own experiences (and not somebody’s). I, thanks going to various places, verified what I don’t want to do in my life, and this is a big information for us when we discover that we don’t like certain things, especially if it seemed we like them.
- Maybe you’re very close to animals and you’d like to get acquainted with their nature, not necessarily with a view to becoming a vet. Google is with you 😉 Don’t approach real foxes, wolves, tigers, lions etc. in order to get to know them, unless you hide in Megazord.
- The above possibilities aren’t the only ones, of course.
Ask your mind what you can do. Develop what is good in you. That’s the point where you need to pay attention. Develop something in which you can become good.
It’s not about denying what’s evil. It’s just when you load your own energy and time (you’ll never get back past hours) for digging for your own defects and problems everyday, you don’t do anything to change those weaknesses. Staring at them with disgust doesn’t make they don’t exist. The truth is that each one of us has own darkness. And it’s not that we have to stop seeing it. It is, it will be in us, in one form or another for always. But don’t exaggerate it. Such exaggeration won’t help you to move.
What do you think we look for good in yourself at all costs instead of imperfections, huh? At least for a while? At least we can try. I know that it’s strange at the very beginning. But it gets normal over time. If you agree to dig for good things about you, let’s move on.
Right now you don’t have to say to yourself that you love you or that you’re beautiful. Let’s start with something smaller.
2. Change thinking by thinking to yourself:
“It’s good that you reached for the book.”
“I appreciate that you didn’t play hooky, although you were tempted to.”
“You know, it’s important that you went to the bed at all, instead of scrolling.”
“I’m glad you ate the breakfast, that way I’m not hungry now.”
“Great that you started to learn it.”
“You did the first step, you came to the gym – that’s how it starts.”
“Thanks for preparing the breakfast for me.”
“I appreciate you trying do this better.”
“Thank you that you read this post to help me better live despite the things about me that I don’t like.”
If you’re just getting started to like yourself a little, and if you’ve never talked to yourself that way, you most probably feel kinda rasp. But despite it, try look at yourself just that way, at somebody who makes at least some effort, a few steps every day. It’s kinda nothing that you praised you for bathing (caring for physical hygiene), but we all have to start somewhere and appreciate the basis. It surely will be better than the current shooting in own heart, sort of “you’ve done a stupid mistake again”, “I can’t even paint a picture in a good way”. The inner critic will be even break into your mind, it’s normal because such sayings have accompanied you so far. It’s kinda okay, that happens to me also at times.
Remember that it demands TIME. The more you say to yourself those favourable things, the faster you form that new (better) model of thinking. And it will help you to go ahead without self-lashing. However, don’t expect that tomorrow will be perfect, it’s not a magical method, so don’t be tough on yourself.
In general, we’re not able to get rid of all our disadvantages, and different shortcomings will be accompany us for the rest of our lives, even if that truth makes us sad and angry and even if our minds don’t accept it. What we can do is weakening our own inner critics by looking for small things which we did, achieved, managed to face. And when disapproving and exaggerated thoughts appear in your mind, stand up for yourself and look for things in your defense. Simultaneously, focus more on fields that you can become good at and reiterate to yourself things which already are good in you.
That’s it. I wish you will to tiny (and at the same time big) steps at changing thoughts 🙂
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