Beyond the Inner Critic

Let’s think about this: How do you see yourself? It’s good if you feel positive about yourself. But sometimes, people find this hard. This is especially true if you’ve had tough experiences in the past. These experiences can change how you see yourself.

Even if you mostly like yourself, there might be parts you don’t like much. For example, your inner critic. This is something I talk about a lot with my clients. Most people don’t like this part of themselves. It can be very harsh and demanding. It might say things like, ‘You should be doing better’ or ‘You should be smarter, richer, or more popular.’

You might also dislike parts of yourself that make you do things you’re not proud of. Like drinking too much, gambling, or choosing the wrong partners. These parts are not usually liked.

But, as I’ve said before, there are no completely bad parts of ourselves. This is a big idea. Dr. Richard Schwartz, who started a type of therapy called Internal Family Systems, even wrote a book about it. Every part of you, even the ones that seem extreme, are trying to help in some way. They might be dealing with pain or trying to protect you from it. The parts that make you want to smoke or drink are trying to help you feel less pain.

This is why people might want a drink after a hard day or a cigarette after a stressful meeting. These parts are trying to help with tough feelings. But this doesn’t mean we should let these behaviors get out of control. We might need to help these parts find better ways to act or set limits. But we should do this in a kind and understanding way.

This is why people often stop drinking or smoking but then start again. To really change, you need to work with these parts of yourself, not fight them. You need to understand why they make you drink, smoke, or do other things. Usually, they’re trying to help you deal with pain.

I know it’s easier to write about this than to actually change how you act every day or how you deal with parts of yourself you don’t like. I get it; it’s not easy. Still, it is possible, and at Mindshyft I’ve seen many people succeed with counselling.

If you would like help getting to know your parts and working toward your version of a “better you” book a free consultation to see if I might be a good fit to help you in your journey.

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