The first many years of my life, (my critic is afraid to say how many) I lived inside the thought in which inhabits my inner critic. Yes, he is that voice in my head that tells me: “You won’t achieve it, that’s not possible, what will they think of you“. And sometimes, of course, he also defends me: “it’s good that he didn’t listen to me, I totally didn’t want him, there’s no bad that doesn’t become better, etc …”
In everyone’s mind there’s a voice that criticizes and another that protects us. These voices are part of our history and of who we are. At the same time, we’re surprised to realize that these voices repeat what we’ve heard since we were little. Surely if we had been born in India as men, our inner dialogue would be diametrically different.
However, our existence is much larger than these voices. So, why do we think that what they tell us is true?
When we are small our subsistence in the family system is guided by these “voices”. Then, when we grow up, what happens to us is what to the circus elephant that thinks he’s still tied to the stake, while when younger tried to set free several times and got hurt. Unconsciously, we have the certainty that if we ignore these voices something terrible will happen to us. We take their words as law.
What to do with our critic?
Far from eradicating it and covering it with different and positive thoughts – tell me I did it many times and it only works at times – the solution is to make him your best friend, since there’s a part of the critic who’s protecting us and is worried about us.
From our loving presence, we can pause to not act the scene that the critic writes, take distance and tell him: I already heard you. From your point of view, I will not achieve it. So, we can start to dialogue with him and understand where that message comes from. Most likely, it will repeat warnings from our first years: the voice of our parents, of our brothers or teachers.
With empathy we can know that the critic only wants to help us. We can ask him what he is trying to protect us from. One answer may be: “your failure”. From his point of view, it’s preferable not to try it for fear that something goes wrong. Listening to it, we give the opportunity for the voice to calm down and give room for something new to come along instead of the inner struggle that does not go anywhere.
The steps to relate to the critic are:
– Realize that it’s the critic who speaks, not you.
– Be in communication with that voice to understand that you want to protect yourself and be empathetic
– Be aware that there is an inner voice behind these voices to which we have given power.
To the extent that we have a greater knowledge of ourselves and accept who we are, including those voices that are part of our history, we can feed our inner wisdom and intuition.
Peace starts from within. We will not achieve anything abroad until we do it inside ourselves.
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