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Honoring Our Inner Critic

As we’re working to heal from addiction and mental illness, one thing we want to make sure we’re confronting is how self-critical we are. Many of us live with an inner critic that is constantly putting us down and making us feel as though we’re inadequate and unworthy. Our natural responses to our inner critic are usually efforts to protect ourselves from more hurt. We try to silence it. We try to ignore it. We try to do everything perfectly so that we have nothing to criticize ourselves for. All of these responses are forms of resistance, and we’re reacting to our inner critic, rather than working with it. Essentially, we’re working against ourselves rather than striving to be in harmony with ourselves.

Rejecting Our Pain, Rejecting Ourselves

Our inner critic is really just an embodiment of our unhealed pain, and when we resist it, our fearful energy usually worsens and overpowers us even more. We’re so afraid of feeling our pain that we do everything we can to avoid it. We become hyper-sensitive to criticism because we’ve been criticizing ourselves so harshly for so long. We have a hard time looking at our mistakes and wrongdoings. We struggle to admit when we feel regret, and we can be defensive when we feel bad about something. We reject other people’s criticism, even when it’s constructive and heartfelt. These are all attempts to protect ourselves from more pain and criticism, but in the process, we’re rejecting our pain, and therefore rejecting huge parts of ourselves.

Honoring Ourselves Instead

We want, instead, to honor our inner critic and everything it’s trying to teach us about our pain. We can learn so much from it when we make the choice to listen to it rather than shun or ignore it. Try not to condemn the voice but embrace it instead. Lean in and listen to what it’s telling you. Bring it in closer rather than pushing it away. When we look deeper, into both the content and the context of the recurring words of our inner critics, we’re usually pointed to what sources of pain within us still have yet to be healed, what needs of ours aren’t being met, what we need to work on in order to love ourselves fully, and what fears we’re still living from. For example, if our inner critic is always berating us for small mistakes, no matter how much progress we’ve made and success we’ve had, we’re being invited to shed our need for perfection. We’re being called to celebrate ourselves, to counter the critic and its negativity. We’re being asked to be gentler and more patient with ourselves, and to commend ourselves for all our hard work.

At The Guest House Ocala, you will be treated with dignity, respect and compassion.

Call 855-483-7800 today for more information on our treatment programs.

3230 Northeast 55th Avenue Silver Springs, FL 34488