Your inner critic is trying to help but sometimes doesn’t. It’s often there as an almost permanent nagging voice in your head.
You’re not alone – most people have an inner critic that is there, some or all of the time.
Sometimes it’s a good thing to have but often it can be decidedly negative.
Which is why overcoming your inner critic. and getting it to work with you rather than against you, is vital to moving forward in life.
Tell your inner critic to tone it down
Many inner critics talk to us in a tone that we wouldn’t tolerate in real life. Shouting, ranting, being totally negative. All from the “safety” of being inside our head and not being able to be heard by anyone else.
That’s not good enough!
It’s time to tell that critical voice that enough is enough.
It needs to tone things down or be banished completely.
Which is worth keeping in mind – the critical voice is in your mind, so ultimately you’re in control of it.
Which means you can do all sorts of things with the voice as well as telling it to be quiet.
You can send it to it’s “room” until it’s calmed down.
You can even silence it – press the internal mute button.
You can even put it in a catapult or space rocket and fire it far, far away.
Make it a game and see how you can tame that voice inside your head, often quicker than you ever thought possible.
Acknowledge your inner critic
Sometimes the voice is just trying to reason with you and protect you.
So instead of arguing or silencing it, ask it for constructive help instead.
What I like to do in these circumstance is talk directly to my subconscious mind – I just say “I’m talking to my subconscious mind” and then carry on with whatever I’m talking about – and ask it to come up with (usually 3) different ways that could achieve a better result.
I then ask it to experiment with those ways – with or without my conscious involvement – and narrow them down to the single best way. Once it’s found that, implement it.
It sounds odd and very “new age” but it works remarkably well.
Suspend your disbelief and try it for yourself.
Failure is part of learning
Tell your inner critic to deal with it.
Edison failed countless times when he was inventing the light bulb. Except he turned it round and told himself he’d found another way that wasn’t correct.
NASA have failed on quite a few occasions with the space program. So have SpaceX and near enough every other company that’s tried to regularly put rockets in space.
But that doesn’t mean they’re not still trying and learning.
It’s how humans have developed over the years and it’s perfectly normal not to get things right first time, even though we seem to assume that now we’re older and supposedly wiser, we ought to get things right first time.
That view is reinforced by the quick start guides for new stuff that we barely glance at because we assume we should be able to pilot that drone or operate something similarly complicated just by looking at the control panel.
Accept failure for what it is – another part of your learning experience.
And tell your inner critic to do the same.
Remember that no-one is perfect
Not even you.
Perfectionism is often our enemy.
There’s a saying that good enough is good enough and – almost all the time – that’s true.
You may not take a journey at the optimal time with every single stage of the journey being the absolute best route and speed. But you still get to your destination.
Exams don’t expect you to get 100%. You wouldn’t be a particularly nice person to be around if you got every answer to every thing spot on correct.
In fact, there are so many things we don’t know (and so many others that we accept as the truth that are subsequently proved wrong) that it’s impossible to be perfect.
Random outside events affect things – it’s that butterfly flapping its wings half way around the globe, causing a hurricane. Except it doesn’t have to be as abstract as that. It could just be that your meal took a few extra minutes to arrive or the temperature of your coffee wasn’t the same as yesterday or anything else that makes things less than 100% perfect.
Deal with it.
Accept the imperfections as part of the richness of your life.
Embrace them and learn from them.
And encourage your inner critic to do the same. Because it’s not perfect either (it’s part of you, so it can’t be).
Book an appointment with your inner critic to talk things through
In the same way you’d book an appointment with your dentist, make an appointment with your inner critic.
Then keep it.
Set a time and a place where you won’t be disturbed.
Then sit down and have a chat inside your head. Or you can vocalise your side of the conversation whilst listening to the responses and arguments from your inner critic.
Keep the conversation civilised. Set some rules ahead of time if necessary. But clear the air.
Who knows, that inner voice may actually be helpful.
And if you’d like more help, download this hypnosis track to tame your inner critic fast.