If you are your own worst critic; you’re not alone. It’s quite amazing how many people’s worst enemy is not some criminal stalking them but themselves. Being self-critical is a valuable skill in small doses but when you are overly critical all the time – you stop yourself from being able to grow.
Your inner critic in essence has stopped being constructive and has turned into a mean-spirited bully and you can’t ever get away from them. So, you need to do something else entirely – you need to get them to shut up.
Fortunately, this isn’t as big a task as it might seem when that bully is in full flow. It’s surprisingly easy to turn off the negative and turn on the positive. Here are 5 simple ways to silence your inner bully.
Treat It Like An Evil Goblin
If you’ve ever seen Labyrinth with David Bowie, then you’ll know that goblins are not lovely elves but rather misshapen and malevolent fantasy beings. They break things and cause chaos wherever they go. But… here’s the thing, they’re also small and easy to deal with if you tackle them head on.
You can pretend that your inner critic is a goblin whispering poison in your ear from a position on your shoulder. What would you do if it was a goblin? You’d flick it off with your hand, wouldn’t you? Well, that’s exactly what you should do.
This is a way of building a mental defence with a physical trigger. It’s not a silly game, it’s supported by science.
Make A List Of Your Own Awesomeness
There is an old salesman’s trick that goes like this. “What I like to do when making a decision is to list all the positives and all the negatives and then pick the action based on the list with the most items on it.”
They then cheat by helping the customer come up with positives while ignoring the negatives. It gets the sale every time.
You can cheat too. Make a list of your own positives. Read it whenever the bully comes to call. Remind yourself that you rock. Send the bully packing because it has no help and it won’t come prepared with a list.
You’ll feel great when you write the list too. So, bonus happy there for you.
Make The Bully Seem Ridiculous
If a bully made a fool out of themselves at school, they immediately lost some of their power, didn’t they? Well, it works on your inner bully too.
Think of a ridiculous ending to a sentence. I quite like to use “because I live in Superman’s underwear draw.” You can make up your own.
When the inner voice comes calling – add that phrase to the end of every sentence it throws at you. You’ll be laughing in no time and that means, it will have lost its power over you. Easy, right?
Be Lovely To Someone Else
The inner bully always disappears in the face of niceness. It’s a strange fact but true all the same. One of the easiest ways to chase it away is simply to pick someone in your environment and pay them a sincere compliment. This creates incongruence in your head and the bully simply vanishes.
Take A High-Level View
Get a satellite image of the earth and then pin your approximate location on it. When the voice comes calling tell yourself, “in the scheme of all this – I have just as much right to be and to be happy as anyone.” Watch it go running.
Your inner critic can add value but if it’s transforming or has transformed into a bully – then it’s time to get tough with it. You see, you do deserve to be happy and you are awesome. Now, you just need the headspace to show that to the world. So use these tips next time the bully comes calling. You’ve got this covered.