“You’re not easy on the eyes, you know. I mean, observe. Your nose looks like an eagle’s beak, and you’re carrying an extra 30 pounds. Who’d want to be seen with you?”
Man, what a cruel thing to say. Worse yet, if you’re one of the tens of millions who ponders what to do about depression or the causes of anxiety, the slaughter may have been dished-out by you. Hmmm – well, at least you’re the messenger.
I’d like to again introduce you to the Inner Critic.
In an earlier piece – “The Inner Critic|Killer of Souls” – I provided a thorough description of the Inner Critic (IC). In short, it’s that voice from within that can deliver incredibly hard punches.
Minus IC insight, we’ll believe we delivered the blows. Fact is, they may actually be the work of an installed “being” – likely someone of great emotional impact from our past.
Please be sure to read the first IC article. It’ll help you absorb what we’re about to discuss – how to peacefully coexist with your IC.
Gotta’ tell ya’, as I first considered IC fixes I was thinking IC elimination. Now, that’s a noble endeavor; however, I just don’t know how realistic it is. Actually, I’m not so sure it’s even the best approach – period.
So I decided to advocate for a peaceful coexistence with the IC. And now I’m ready to bring you 10 ways to pull it off…
- Gain insight into the IC’s purpose – it’s there for a reason. Be sure to read my introductory piece. And take the time to do your own research. I mean, how could you ever hope for IC peaceful coexistence if you don’t understand why it’s alive (and kickin’)?
- Become aware of your very own IC – and how it works. Jot its statements and questions down as they spew forth, making a note of what was going on at the time. And work toward coming to understand how your IC impacts your daily life.
- Develop a supportive and realistic internal dialogue – relationship – with your IC. Welcome it when it comes a callin’.
- Be proactive in seeking the truth, as opposed to blindly accepting your IC’s taunts. Challenge it; however, be willing to live with acceptable truces grounded in mutual understanding.
- Do your best to understand your IC may actually be trying (in a funny sort of way) to protect you from harm or unjust criticism. That’s right, it may be trying to defend you.
- When your IC really gets crankin’, match its expressions with positive and realistic ones of your own.
- If you perceive the words of the IC are actually those of a powerful figure from your past, give them right back to that person. Or why not give them back to the IC itself?
- Ask your IC what it suggests in terms of viable solutions to the issue at hand. And you know what? If it can’t come up with anything, let it know about it! Expressions such as “Cat got your tongue?” can come in awfully handy.
- No matter how nasty it gets, do all you can to have, and express, compassion for your IC – even as you’re aggressively challenging it. See if you can bring yourself to say something like “Thank you for sharing your opinion. I know you mean well.”
- Be willing to accept the reality that the quest for a peaceful coexistence with your IC may well be a lifelong proposition.
So what do you think? Those work for you? Well, there’s only one way to find out. Take ’em to the lab of your life!
But keep this in mind, okay? As if I had to tell you, the IC is a stubborn force and may not want to play nicely. We’re talking a process here and it can be a terribly slow one. In fact, it may be difficult to detect you’re making progress. However, if you stay true to the cause, I’m betting you’re moving along.
Are you one of the tens of millions wondering what to do about depression or pondering the causes of anxiety? Look for your Inner Critic and come to understand it.
Only then is a peaceful coexistence possible.
500+ Chipur articles – with so much mood and anxiety disorder information – are waiting for a read. Dig in!
I can really see some power in taking the jotted observations and comments I make from the IC and writing down responding comments…..and that would include incorporating your suggestion that the IC gets some praise for offering input. As cranky and mean as my IC is right now, this might be challenging, but I am willing to give it a shot and see if we can’t agree to cohabitate this body a bit more pleasantly. Thank you so much for the research into something that I find a regular struggle..
Sorry for the delayed reply, Patricia – doing the family thing over Easter weekend. Glad you have some things to bring to that “cranky and mean” IC of yours. You’re brave to give them a go. Expect good results! You’re more than welcome for the research, my dear.
Great article (s) I read them both, and after our conversation the other day this really makes sense to me now!! When I was younger way before anxiety, I was very very competitive and always wanted to do my best, I wonder now if that was in fact a competitive spirit or was I even then trying please my IC? Which led me to another thought, this may or may not be relevant to this topic, but in my early adulthood starting to serious date etc, I had been informed more then once by my significant “I can’t love YOU, if YOU don’t love yourself” I’ll admit at the time I m sure I looked her square in the eyes….said I understand ( truthfully thinking this girl is out there) ok ok I’m rambling but these 2 articles really got me thinking and reflecting!!! Thanks again Bill for great article!!!
First time comment – I really appreciate the visit and participation. If anything here on Chipur got you thinking and reflecting, it’s served its purpose. And what you’ve offered here tells me you’re connecting some significant dots. You know, whether it’s anxiety or depression, we often become so into our symptoms that we don’t take the time to consider all the things that go on within that contribute to our misery. However, when we do we often find tons of material to work with – and healing as we process it.
Again, thanks for stopping by and helping us out…