Do you ever find yourself beating yourself up, or having negative conversations in your head about not being up to scratch? Maybe you feel deeply disappointed in yourself if you lose your temper with your kids, or run out of time to do your meditation, forget to place a grocery order, or miss a work deadline?
We get it! We are all for striving to be the best version of yourself. But setting the bar too high and having unrealistic expectations of yourself to be perfect at everything can create extra pressure in an already stressful environment. Make sure you’re not adding fuel to the fire of toxic self-criticism and bring more ease into your life more with our go-to strategies for taming your inner critic:
Change the (Internal) Channel
When you’re watching something on TV and you don’t like the show—you can change the channel. The same is true for your internal dialogue. Once you notice the negative storyline playing out, make a conscious decision to interrupt the pattern. Getting physical at this moment with a gentle stretch, walk, or workout can help accelerate this mental shift. The more times you get up to change your inner “channel” the easier shifting mental gears will become.
Improve Yourself, But Be Realistic
There’s a huge difference between berating yourself for not being good enough and accepting that on the journey to self-improvement we are always learning, refining, and striving to do your best. Take the approach that who you are today is enough. This will fuel your efforts to reach greater heights with positive inner dialogue which will accelerate your efforts to improve your wellbeing, relationships, and work-life instead of sabotaging them.
Stay Connected to Friends & Family You Trust
Harsh inner dialogue can leave you feeling isolated and separate from others (at a time when you need to feel connected more than ever!). Connect with people you trust about how you’re feeling and share your experiences. It’s likely those people have had (or are having) the exact same experience which will reduce that sense of feeling alone and provide comfort knowing that we truly are all in this together.
Get Quality Sleep
Your brain does a lot of work while you’re asleep and the saying “a good night does wonders” is true when it comes to hitting refresh on negative thoughts. The impact of not enjoying optimal sleep is far-reaching from physical and mental wellbeing through to productivity and peace of mind. Start by releasing habits that are keeping you from deeper sleep: turn off your TV and cell phone before bed, unwind with a warm, steamy shower, and read a book are some simple ways to promote quality sleep.
Most of us spend a lot of time inside our own mind—worrying about the future, replaying events in the past, and giving ourselves a hard time about our shortcomings. With practice, you can develop a more productive inner dialogue so that you can enjoy life more, protect your energy, feel uplifted, and work toward your ambitions in a way that supports your overall wellbeing.