Sometimes our inner critic can be our biggest enemy. While being tough on yourself is one way to set personal challenges and stay motivated, that toughness can stand in the way of your growth if the voice in your head can’t be turned off.
This is especially true when it comes to weight-loss because weight is often a taboo topic. Conversations about weight can be difficult to have with other people, no less yourself. Do you ever find your inner dialogue repeating any of these self-sabotaging statements?
- “I’ll never be able to reach my weight goals. It’s too hard.”
- “I blame myself for my weight and now I can’t do anything about it.”
- “I am ‘less than’ because of my weight.”
Challenging Your Inner Critic
Your inner critic isn’t merely a personal motivator or an internal system of checks and balances. If left unchecked, the voice of your inner critic can prevent you from believing in yourself and reaching your goals. Sometimes our inner dialogue can even become a self-fulfilling prophecy if we buy into the lies and negativity.
Silencing your inner critic can be challenging, but you DO have power over your thoughts. Try these tips to rise above them and boost self-confidence.
1 – Imagine Saying to Other People What You Say to Yourself. It can help you realize the harshness of your inner critic and how untrue those words really are.
2 – Compliment and Encourage Others as a Habit. The more you make a habit out of lifting others up, the more likely you are to lift yourself up along the way, too.
3 – Start a Positive Affirmation Journal. Every day, write down positive things you recognize about yourself that you are grateful for. For example:
- “I am hard-working and don’t give up easily.”
- “Today I got up and met the day’s challenges, even though I had a difficult time starting.”
- “I’m grateful for my patience and ambition.”
4 – Remind Yourself of Your Progress. Looking back on what you’ve already accomplished can help you believe that you will continue to find more success down the road.
5 – Balance Negative Thoughts with Productivity. Every time your inner critic tries putting you down, do something you will be proud of later (i.e. a workout, a healthy hobby, spending time with loved ones or even running your day’s errands).
6 – Talk it Out with Someone You Trust. Confide in a loved one or accountability partner who will help you recognize the lies that your inner critic is telling you.
7 – Look at the Bigger Picture. If you’re struggling with something, make an effort to recognize other factors that might be getting in the way — factors that have nothing to do with your aptitude or self-worth (i.e. a busy schedule, health limitations or stress).
Remember that your thoughts have powerful influence over your actions. When you make an effort to think positively and silence your inner critic, you will slowly cultivate self-compassion and self-confidence that will set you up for meeting your goals. Your inner dialogue can make the difference between being stagnant and pushing forward!