Silencing Your Inner Critic
We all have goals, both big and small, professional and personal, that we set for ourselves. It's what drives us and keeps us growing and evolving. In yoga we refer to a personal goal as an intention or a "sankalpa." Most of us set new goals in January... and then by February 1st we are beating ourselves up for getting off track. One of the greatest hindrances to our success is our inner critic. And we all have one: a voice inside our head that judges, criticizes, compares, shames, makes us feel less than or not enough. That voice can make sticking to resolutions or just maintaining self-care pretty challenging.
But what if we shifted our inner dialogue?
Let’s take a pretty common resolution: eating healthier (I have a lot of friends doing the Whole30 this month and I know I personally want to eat less processed foods in the coming months). Rather than letting your inner critic put you down and keep you from reaching your goals, what if you let the voice that originates from your soul—a place of love and deep wisdom—speak your truth? That voice is your Inner Badass, and that voice is rooting for your success.
In order to silence your inner critic, sometimes you need to give your Inner Badass a script. Create a personal mantra like, "Healthy food, healthy me." Repeat it to yourself when you feel your willpower slipping. Add your mantra to your calendar, a sticky note on your desk or fridge, write it in your journal, in your phone. Begin to notice when and most importantly WHY your willpower slips. For example, I have noticed a direct correlation within myself between thinking stressful thoughts and wanting to reach for something sweet. I've also noticed a direct correlation between hearing my inner critic say something hurtful and how I feel afterwards (not good!).
Need a little more help sticking to your resolutions?
Make them public! Share with friends and family or on social media. Make yourself accountable to the people you don't want to let down, to your tribe. They are your cheerleaders after all!
Set a lofty goal for yourself—audacious goals are compelling!
Once you've set that goal, break it down into tiny, do-able steps. If you want to run a marathon, you've got to come up with a training plan and maybe start with a 5K and work your way up from there.
Be sure to celebrate little milestones along the way. If you ran your first 10 miler, that is worthy of celebration! Plus, it'll help keep your eyes on the real prize.
Lastly, focus on GRATITUDE. I caught myself looking in the mirror the other day at my postpartum body and focusing on the things I wasn't happy with. I should have focused on the things that I am happy with.... that is how you shift away from your inner critic and toward your Inner Badass.
So what does YOUR inner critic say? And what would your Inner Badass say, if you were willing to listen? And what if...
what if you simply devoted this year to loving yourself more?
Just imagine! Until next time—