Have you ever been told that you’re too hard on yourself? What about toward others? No one appreciates negative criticism, even if you believe you’re being helpful. Believe it or not, your inner self doesn’t appreciate it when you criticize yourself, either.
Luckily, you can learn to have a more positive attitude toward yourself and others, and it isn’t as hard as you might think. With a simple action here and altering a habit there, you’ll soon find your outlook changing.
Try these strategies:
Give compliments. When you feel compelled to criticize or judge someone, use your willpower to say something nice instead.
You could even keep your compliment to yourself and simply think it. However, you’ll be surprised how much your relationships improve if you’re willing to speak your kindness aloud.
Think about your positive attributes for a few minutes each day. Catch yourself when you start to speak negatively to yourself. Say something positive instead.
Consider the difference between giving advice and being critical. Advice is helpful and has a positive intention. Criticism has a negative intent and isn’t helpful.
Think carefully – what are your true intentions? What are you honestly trying to accomplish?
Do you criticize yourself? Why? Imagine someone you cared about was in the same situation. What advice would you give them?
Start your day with a positive attitude. By getting your day off to a positive start, you’ll be less likely to be critical of yourself or others.
Consider what makes you feel Is it music? Reading inspirational quotes? Remembering your favorite vacation? Making a list of things that fill you with gratitude?
Start your day with positive thoughts and energy. Carry that feeling for as long as you can each day.
Spend more time thinking about what you want, rather than what you don’t want. Thinking about what you don’t want is addressing life from a negative perspective. Keep your thoughts focused on what you do want. Your mood will be lighter and you’ll treat yourself and others more kindly too.
Allow situations and people to be as they are. One of the easiest ways to make yourself unhappy is to believe that everything is supposed to be a certain way. You might believe that others should thank you for a compliment or offer you their seat on the bus, but they might not feel that way.
In reality, everyone views the world differently, and your views aren’t any more correct than anyone else’s. If you think that everyone else should automatically see things through your perspective, you’re likely to be critical and miserable.
Understand the situation. Ensure that you have a complete and accurate understanding before jumping to conclusions. The most critical people in the world are often operating with insufficient information. Before you say something negative, make an effort to get the whole story.
Perhaps the most important issue is self-esteem. Those that are critical of others often do so to make themselves feel more important, superior, or dominant.
It’s also possible you’re using criticism as a way of preventing others from getting too close to you.
Consider why you’re critical of others and yourself. The solution becomes more apparent if you correctly identify the cause.
If you have a tendency to be critical, you can enjoy your life more by making a positive change. Learn to be kind and patient. It just takes practice. Be kind to everyone you meet. Be kind and patient with yourself, too.
Before you know it, this behavior will become a habit and you’ll discover that you’ve acquired a new, positive outlook regarding yourself, others, and life itself.
Believe it or not, creating inner peace is a choice. Each day, we’re faced with the choice to create peace or create stress. This can be a challenging task on a good day. On a bad day, it feels impossible. The constant ups and downs in life are a given. They’re largely uncontrollable. But you can control your response to them. Even though it feels impossible when you’re dealing with a narcissist, you really can learn to feel peaceful in challenging times.
Find the peace you need to thrive:
1. Give yourself the advice you would give a friend. It’s difficult to make decisions when you’re emotionally compromised. But the path forward is more obvious to you if someone else is struggling. Imagine that your friend has the same challenge you’re facing. What advice would you give them?
2. Ask yourself what you’re learning from this experience. Are you learning the importance of saving your money? Are you learning not to overextend yourself? Are you learning how to deal with the death of a loved one?
• Every hardship provides a lesson. Determine what you can learn from the experience.
3. Write in a journal. Let your emotions flow out onto paper. There’s something cathartic about writing. It feels like the emotion is leaving your body and taking residence in a new location.
• After unloading your negative emotions, use your journal to make a list of possible solutions to your dilemma. What resources do you have available? Whom can you contact for help or support?
4. What are you afraid of? If you’re feeling out of sorts, you’re afraid of something. What is it? Defining your fear will make it a little less scary. Ask yourself what is the worst thing likely to happen.
5. Practice mindfulness. We make our challenges more challenging by continuously churning through them. You think about your issue while you’re in the shower, driving to work, eating lunch, talking with friends, or watching TV. You never get a break.
• Mindfulness is simply paying attention to your environment and the task at hand. If you’re eating dinner, your mind should be on eating, not thinking about your difficulties. It’s challenging to control your thoughts, but the peace you experience can’t be beat.
6. Tame your mind first. It’s a common mistake. You focus on solving your challenge first. Then you believe you’ll feel better. This is logical, but slow and challenging. Get your mind under control, and then your problem is easier to solve. You’ll also feel better more quickly. Quiet your mental noise first and then search for solutions.
7. Remember all of your previous issues that turned out okay. Think about the challenges you’ve faced in the past. You survived and moved on. You’ll get over this, too. Believe that everything will work out for the best.
• What was the worst thing that happened to you during your elementary school years?
• High school?
• Early 20’s?
8. Look for the helpers. Whether there’s a fire, an earthquake, or a homeless family, there’s always someone helping. There are people available to help you, too. Look for the helpers and you’ll find them.
Feeling stressed is a typical response when life takes an unexpected turn. Our responses to hardship are habitual. Habits can be altered or broken. New habits can be created. Avoid the belief that your negative feelings are happening to you like bad weather. You can choose your focus and manage your thoughts. Find peace first and then solve your challenge.
1. I’ll always be alone. Being lonely and feeling isolated are normal human emotions. However, they become toxic when you think that things will always be this way.
* This toxic thought can make you feel that you’re the only person on the planet. It can make you believe that you’ll never find love or a partner. And it can stop you from feeling joy.
* Instead of thinking you’ll always be alone, focus on what you already have. Do you have loving parents or siblings, Do you have amazing friends or coworkers, If you look carefully, you’ll see you’re never truly alone.
2. I hate my body.Hating your body can be one of the most toxic thoughts in your mind. It can lead to eating disorders, self-esteem issues, and other challenges. Everyone can find an imperfection, but it’s important to avoid dwelling on them.
* Understand that your body is a gift. It’s part of what makes you unique. Notice the things you do like about your body. Accentuate those characteristics, focus on them, and you’ll find it easier to start loving the body you have.
3. I’m not happy with my career. Your job can make you feel unhappy, but it’s another toxic thought. Try to avoid thinking about how much you hate your work.
Of course, you may pursue a different career path. Seek out new work without dwelling on your hatred for the current job. Follow your passion for a new career without anger and resentment. It’s always more beneficial to go toward something instead of away from something else.
4. I’m not worthy. This toxic thought can wear many outfits. You may feel that you’re not worthy of love, success, money, or other things. You may believe that you always have to suffer and struggle. You may decide that you’re not meant for greater things. However, this toxic thought can stop you from enjoying life and finding happiness. These feelings of worthlessness are only in your mind. You’re a unique person who has value, but you’ve convinced yourself otherwise.
* Often, this toxic thought comes from what you think others are thinking about you. You falsely assume that others don’t see any value in you, so you’re self-esteem sinks to a low level.
Consider starting a new game: congratulate yourself each time you do something right. Find things that you do satisfactorily. Even small ones count. For example, if you made a tasty breakfast, congratulate yourself. If you like the outfit you’re wearing, kudos to you for picking out something nice. Let your thoughts dwell on what you do right!
5. I don’t have enough. This toxic thought can manifest itself in multiple ways, such as thinking you don’t have enough money, skills, talents, or abilities. You may also think you don’t have enough connections, friends, children, or things.
* Scarcity thoughts stop you from appreciating what you already have around you. They prevent you from finding joy in being thankful. With these thoughts, you may never have enough material possessions or people to love, regardless of how many you actually have.
* You can certainly strive for more, but it’s important to also be thankful for what you do have.
Toxic thoughts are easy to create and often hard to eliminate. They can overwhelm you if you aren’t careful. If toxic thoughts have gotten a hold on you, it’s important to take action to shoo them out of your mind.
Notice when these toxic thoughts arise. Immediately, switch that thought to one that’s more positive and uplifts you. Meditate, repeat affirmations, and try these ideas to loosen their grip. Do these actions consistently, and soon you’ll find that things work out for your benefit more often.
Fear is a part of life, and some fear is helpful. You’re afraid to stick your hand into a fire or to jump off a cliff. If you weren’t afraid of anything, you wouldn’t live long. But most fears are crippling and influence your decisions in negative ways.
Imagine you’re walking through the woods and get a thorn in your arm. You would likely remove it and go about your life with little thought of that mild injury. But imagine if you didn’t deal with it.
Eventually, that thorn would affect many of your decisions:
* It would become infected and sore.
* You would be careful not to bump anything.
* You’d avoid most sports.
* You would protect yourself anytime someone walked to close.
* Eventually, you might even develop a special cover to tape over it.
* Then you must worry about finding clothes that fit over it.
* You couldn’t swim because the tape might come off.
* It would affect your sleeping position, and so on.
Fears are the same way. A fear of talking to strangers affects the decisions you make in your social life and career. We avoid all types of things to ensure we don’t stir up the negative emotions caused by our fears.
The more fears you have, the less freedom you enjoy.
Try these techniques to transcend your fears and claim the level of freedom you deserve:
1. Become more aware. There’s a big world out there with a variety of perspectives. Yours might not be the best perspective. You might believe that a fear of public speaking is totally normal and justified. But is it, What is the worst that could happen if you make a mistake, No one is going to stone you.
* Look at all your fears and make a list of them.
* Decide which are causing your life the most grief. Which fears do you spend the most time working around, Which are the most limiting,
3. Deal with your fears a little at a time. For example, if you’re afraid of public speaking, try giving a speech to your child, nephew, or niece. Then trying giving it to three of them. Build up your tolerance until you can speak to thousands.
* You can also use a psychologist if you’re not making a lot of progress on your own.
5. Use a journal. Writing can often be more helpful than thinking. We take the things we write more seriously than our self-talk. You talk to yourself constantly throughout the day. What will one more thought accomplish, Use a journal to record your thoughts, fears, and your progress.
Imagine a life without any irrational fears. What would you do if you weren’t afraid of failing, You can measure your personal freedom by number of fears you possess. Everyone develops fears as a natural consequence of living. You have a choice. You don’t have to keep your fears. Spend some time each day dealing with your fears and reclaim your life.
It’s no fun to be self-conscious. This one of the reasons that drugs and alcohol are so attractive to some people. These substances decrease self-consciousness. Self-consciousness is the result of wanting to control the image other people have of you. Ask yourself why you even care in the first place.
Caring what others think is a natural, default condition. It’s a leftover from your school days. You’ve grown beyond that environment. It’s time to move on.
Embrace boldness and live your life on your own terms:
No one cares. That can be good news or bad news depending on your perspective. As soon as you catch yourself preoccupied with the thoughts and opinions of others, remind yourself that they’re too worried wondering what you’re thinking about them. Give yourself a break and relax. You’re being judged less than you think.
Studies have shown that people pay attention about half as much as you think they do. For example, in one study, college students were asked to wear an embarrassing t-shirt into class and then guess how many of their fellow students noticed the t-shirt. The guesses were approximately two times higher than the actual result.
Failing to act or speak results in more regret than saying or doing something embarrassing. Embarrassing incidents never seem to be as traumatic as predicted. Your ego stings more when you hold back. It becomes harder and harder to forgive yourself each time.
Ask yourself, “So?”. That inner voice will keep you paralyzed if you allow it. Instead, turn the tables and ask “So?”
“If I go to the beach, everyone will see my thighs.” “So?”
Instead of reacting emotionally, use a little logic and override your initial impulse. What’s the worst that can go wrong?
Avoid comparisons between others and yourself. The truth is that we notice the strengths of others and our own weaknesses. We’re not good at noticing our own strengths. We don’t notice the weaknesses of others easily, because they’re so busy avoiding them.
Take note of your strengths and you’ll see just how great you are. Spend your time comparing your weaknesses to someone else’s strengths and you won’t feel good about yourself.
Pretend you’re confident even if you’re not. Confident people act. When you act, and nothing bad happens, you’ll begin to develop real confidence. Keep telling yourself that you’re a confident person.
Adopt confident mannerisms and a confident posture. Speak with authority. It takes time to convince your brain that you’re a confident person, so start right away!
Take part in activities that excite you. It’s easier to be bold when doing something that you really want to do. Learn to be bold in the easiest way possible. If you’ve always wanted to visit Rome, but fear international travel, traveling to Rome will be easier to accomplish than attempting something you fear, but have little interest in.
Try a new style on for size. Change up your wardrobe or hairstyle. Expand your view of yourself. Others will view you differently too. This might make it easier to do and say the things that are on your mind. When you view yourself differently, you give yourself permission to act differently.
Self-consciousness is natural, but it’s uncomfortable and potentially limiting. Take a moment and imagine what your life would be like if you were able to stop caring about the opinions of others. This is a battle that everyone must fight in order to be truly free. Ignore your social anxieties and be your true self.