Here is how to silence your inner critic in three easy steps
“You’re such a fatty. Look at that pouch it’s so big you look pregnant.”
“You’re a terrible partner, and that’s why no one will ever love you.”
“You’re a faker, and everyone knows that you have fallen short in life.”
“You’re not as good as you used to be. As a matter of fact, you’re aging really bad.”
These are some of the terrible things we tell ourselves daily. This is the nasty voice in our heads that makes us suffer and the voice that we spend hours listening to.
We can sometimes be our own worst enemies. Honestly, the things we say to ourselves we wouldn’t dare say to those who get under our skin.
The voice in our heads is not always kind. It critiques everything we do, it tells us we are unworthy, it discourages us and points out failures. We’re so good at beating ourselves that we don’t even notice that we’re doing it. We can be cruel to ourselves and judge ourselves harshly. We are losing something that can truly help us tap into our happiness and silence our inner critique…
Self-compassion is NOT self-pity. It’s not self-indulgence and it’s not self-esteem. It’s a self-kindness and it’s the basis of self-love. It’s also the first step in achieving all of our goals.
Research has shown that women will easily give compassion to others, but when it comes to self-compassion well, that’s a NO go. Research into self-compassion has shown that high self-esteem is no longer the best predictor of success and happy life. Self-compassion is now regarded as more valuable for our well being than self-esteem and confidence.
I consider compassion to be the sixth vital sign (heart rate, body temperature, respiration rate, blood pressure and menstrual cycle are the other 5 vital signs). Something we can NO longer live without.
Compassion means you notice suffering, you respond to pain and that you offer kindness and understanding. It’s easy to have compassion for others but not so easy for us to have self-compassion for ourselves. Can we undo this?
WHY is it so hard for us to give ourselves the same compassion we so freely give to others? Why are we so cruel to ourselves?
Having self-compassion for oneself is no different than having compassion for others. It is the exact same thing. Yet many of us speak harshly to ourselves, judge ourselves for our failures, ignore our pain, and swallow our tears. But there’s a better way to live with oneself, and it involves self-compassion. Self-compassion nourishes our souls and drops us into a happier and more successful life. A life where realizing our biggest dreams is within our reach because we know that if we fall we will rise again.
Self-compassion involves three very easy steps.
Step one, we must recognize our own suffering. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve squashed my own suffering or held it down so one would see my broken spirit. Or worse, so no one would notice my less than perfect life. I have treated thousands of women who suffer every day with pelvic issues, and most of the time, they have suffered in silence. I have seen thousands of women go through the motions of their lives without acknowledging their own profound suffering. These women hold on to their suffering, and it keeps them in a cycle of vicious emotional and physical pain, so much so that it leads to them living half a life.
So like I said before the first step in self-compassion is to notice your suffering. If you ignore your suffering, you cannot feel compassion towards yourself. You must acknowledge your suffering. You must swim in it and feel it in every part of your body. Only by truly seeing it can we then change it.
The second step in practicing self-compassion is to feel moved by your own pain and suffering and to open your heart to it. When you open your heart to your suffering, you will feel warm, caring towards yourself. This is precisely what we feel for others, right? Our heart opens, and we want to help ease their suffering, and then we want to help them in any way that we can.
So why not ease our own suffering when it comes up. Opening your heart to your own suffering and letting go of self- judgments and disappointments are critical for happiness. We cannot blame ourselves for our mistakes. The word compassion literally means to “suffer with, and you’re experiencing suffering with yourself.
The third step is to offer understanding and kindness to yourself when you fail or make mistakes, rather than judging yourself harshly. Finally, when you feel compassion for yourself, it means that you realize that suffering, failure, and imperfection is part of being a female in this world, and it’s a shared human experience that is within all of us.
In this 5 minute video, I speak with Zee Selvili, a mindfulness self-compassion therapist. Ms. Selvili shares expert advice and tips you can use right now to experience more self-compassion, better healing, and inner peace.