“What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create.” — Buddha
You may have heard this a thousand times and you may have taken it for granted, like most of us. But remember that your mind is a powerful thing which works in synchronization with what you focus on. The Law of Attraction says that if you think of riches, you get rich, same with poverty. The same goes for self-criticism, which contributes to why so many people are unhappy, unsuccessful, and struggle with depression, anxiety, and other issues.
Many people compare themselves to others and when they don’t measure up, they tend to bash themselves, developing a sense of inferiority and self-criticism. This negative feeling has a profound impact on your mental, physical, and social health.
Self-compassion, on the other hand, teaches us to embrace our reality as well as unique selves, focus on the positives, and move past self-judgment to help us live a happy, fulfilling, and meaningful like.
Here are a few ways to cultivate self-compassion and kick self-criticism out of your mind:
When people find themselves swimming in a pool of self-criticism, it is usually because of negative thoughts they have gotten swept away in — You always do stupid things. You can’t do this. You will fail again and so on. This pattern of negative thinking is often accompanied by negative rumination. Mindfulness or non-judgemental awareness, helps curb both negative thinking and rumination. It helps you become aware of your thoughts, especially those that are negative and involve self-criticism. If you struggle with developing a state of self-awareness, you may also get help from psychotherapy.
Understand that everyone is imperfect
Self-compassion is mostly about understanding that life is imperfect and it’s okay to be imperfect — You can have flaws, be lazy and unproductive at times, not have the perfect body, or do not have anything that falls under the category of "Perfect". It requires permitting yourself to be who you are while keeping criticism at bay from spreading its roots in your mind. Take some time out to realize that you are unique and accept your mistakes as a means to encourage self-compassion and learning.
Work with a therapist
While it’s true that your brain can cultivate self-compassion, developing new behavior or thought patterns requires effort. This is where a therapist can jump in and help you with cultivating self-compassion. They provide you with a safe space and help you explore ways to stop that self-criticizing and pay attention to your thoughts and behaviors.
Self-compassion may be a foreign concept for you but if you cultivate it, you can move toward a life that has more happiness, success, and contentment.
If you need help with self-compassion or see signs of self-criticism, get in touch with me and let me help you move forward with psychotherapy.