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Talking to your inner critic, can it be tamed?
Do you have an inner critic ? Have you ever tried to talk to your inner critic. This is what happened when I tried. In my Be yourself thread people asked about how I interviewed my inner critic. So here it is.
This is adapted from a writing exercise to interview your inner critic about one's writing. As my inner critic has an opinion all aspects of my life I decided to broaden the scope of the interview.
Me: I welcome (well I don't really) this opportunity to
find out why you always need to have an opinion that is always negative about
me and my life.
IC: I thought this was going to be a friendly interchange of ideas but there you go with your anger and hostile remarks. I do not see myself as negative but as helping you, because you do need help.
I am here to help you why can't you see that?
Me: So when I am trying to sleep and you tell me about all my mistakes, embarrassing moments, how does that help me?
IC: I thought while you are in bed you would have time to consider some of your past behaviours. This I feel will only help you to improve.
Me: If you are so helpful why do I feel so worthless, so sad, so ignorant when you are around? Do you really know how low I can feel when you are constantly telling me all my faults?
IC: You make yourself feel that way- I am merely pointing out the truth. It is not my problem that you are so weak.
Me: Maybe this was a bad idea you are never going to listen to me or understand me.
IC: Have you ever thought that maybe you shouldn't listen to me if I upset you so much.
Me How can I ignore you when you are so loud at times.
IC: See this is what I mean you are so weak. You have the power to ignore me, to silence me but all you do is whinge and complain.
Me: I am ending this interview. Enough is enough.
What would you say to your inner critic and what do you want to hear from your inner critic? Maybe you can have a go at interviewing your inner critic.
Far Out Quirky... I LOVE it. What a great idea.
Talking to myself appeals (anyone who has read my lists and letters to self will know that).
I wonder what my inner critic would say? I'm not sure if it would be very nice reading. Maybe I'll try on my thread later (going swimming now).
Thanks for explaining this. When you said this technique was for writing does that mean creative writing? I wonder if anyone else has techniques like this they have altered or found that challenge unhelpful thinking?
Hi Quirky, Quercus,
Thank you, as Quercus said..Far out.
You really came up with a good mindfulness thread.
It will be a challenge, but interesting as well.
I will try this but not just yet, I don't want to ask questions that my inner critic would be to critical of.
Writing to myself will be new to me, I can try and see how I go. I might like doing it.
Hi Quirky and GGrand 😊
Well GGrand I can officially say if you are worried about a harsh response by your internal critic maybe write it offline first.
I had the same feeling of hesitation. Thank Goodness. It is not pleasant to read in the slightest. I think I will put it on my thread though (with a trigger warning). Worst case scenario it is offensive.
But it was really facinating for me too. Once I started writing the debate just flowed. You should try it GGrand. I think Quirky is really onto a winner here.
Would love to know how you (and any others reading) went and if it helped you?
Thanks again Quirky. This really helped me today.
Welcome to my thread,
I am looking forward to sharing ideas on ow to tame the inner critic, the one who tries to undermine you , who doubts your decisions, who can even spoil the good times.
Quercus, thanks it was your question that sparked this thread. I am thinking as I wrote my interview a while ago it would be an ongoing conversation but I was surprised how angry I was rather than submissive.
I think other ideas to help tame the inner critic would be very welcome. As I said this is to share ideas. I am interested in any thoughts that come from your interview with your critic.
Thanks again for your support and comment.
GG, How wonderful of you to reply on my new thread. How are you? You make a good point you have to be prepared for a chat with your inner critic. I think a letter to yourself is a good start and see what happens. Thanks again.
The interview is just one idea. You make like just to ask questions but not answer them, you just want a chat with your inner critic, or you may want to write a list of things you like and don't like about your inner critic.
I look forward to any ideas and comments . You may have turned your inner critic into a friend? How did you do that?
Thanks so much for sharing this writing and commentary with your inner critic. My goodness, what you have written has been a bit of an eye opener to me at just how easily we take in everything our inner critic or our mind in general tells us.
I do sometimes write stuff out, using this "inner critic format" will certainly add to my understanding myself. I just need to make time to do the writing!
Cheers to you from Dools
And Hi to Everyone reading this thread!
Thanks for your comments. It interesting for me to see what others read in my writing. I found a lot in Nat's interview with her inner critic and it helped me too.
I think even being aware of your inner critic can give one insight and the ability to challenge the thoughts without having to write it down.
Sometimes as I write a comment I need to fight my critic saying what I am writing does not make sense and I should hit delete.
Thanks everyone for reading and I look forward to reading more suggestions and comments.
Hi Quirky and everyone else who has written or is reading.
Quirky thanks for commenting on my interview. It was a very interesting thing to try. What did I learn from it?
- I am my own worst enemy
- My critic is a catastrophiser
- My critic hates me.
- I am my critic. The critic responses were what I feel on a bad day. A representation of my low self esteem.
- Criticisms and worry are just thoughts. They have no real power unless I choose to give it.
- ❤ nat.
Hi to everyone ,
Nat, I was going to do a list what I learnt from your interview so some may overlap with yours
*Your critic is a mean bully
* You give yourself such a hard time
" You realise you have power over your critic and so your thoughts.
I think that is a great lesson to learn that we give our inner critic power so we can choose not to.To me that is easier said than done.
In my interview my critic tells me I have the power to ignore it but I get mad and end it.So I know what to do but I chose to ignore the truth. Any ideas?
I am not sure if anyone can relate to this. Whenever I seem to be feeling ok and dare I say enjoying myself, my inner critic whispers that maybe things are not as I see them. If I am not vigilant I start listening to the critic and before I know it I am doubting myself.
I wonder how you ignore your critic and don't let it spoil your day.