An experiment you can try…

Does your mind ever switch off from its constant judgement?  Is your critical inner voice really beginning to irritate you?  Is it constantly speaking to you with a “you should have…” or “why didn’t you…?” or “If only you…”

Let’s take some specific examples:

  1. I should have done more work today
  2. I ought to ring/visit aunty/uncle/cousin/friend…
  3. My genitals/breasts are not looking nice
  4. Maybe one day I will actually say what I mean
  5. If I was a better person I would have…

Please feel free to reflect on some of your own examples and then try an experiment in being kinder to yourself, in trying to treat yourself as if you were your own, only child…

Repeat one of your recent ways of beating yourself up and conclude it with the following phrase (or something similar): … and/but that’s ok.”

So number 3 would read, “I should have done more work today… but that’s ok.” The body immediately loosens and relaxes with this phrase/permission.  How strange that we tend to be much more comfortable with negativity than positivity!  Let’s try number 5. “Maybe one day I will say what I actually mean...but that’s ok.

This is not a recipe for inertia or an avoidance of personal growth; it is a recognition of work in progress (Rome wasn’t built in a day) and a possibly rare attempt at being compassionate to ourselves.  In fact the critical, inner voice can also be welcomed and used productively.  For example, one could look at any of the above statements (or any of your own critical, inner voices) and also add, “thanks, I’ll give that some thought and see what I can do about it…”

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