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Dr. Kojo Sarfo / Uncategorized  / How to Stop Being Too Hard On Yourself

How to Stop Being Too Hard On Yourself

Sometimes, we don’t realize we’re putting too much pressure on ourselves until we experience emotional and physical distress. However, it’s not easy to end self-criticisms and harsh generalizations. So here are some ways to learn how to be kind to yourself.

1. Observe Your Thoughts and Emotions

Recognize how you react whenever you face adversities. Creating a moment between reacting and responding to circumstances would allow ourselves to have initial insights about our characteristics.

As you go through the process, it is important to ask yourself certain questions to develop self-awareness. Seek answers to the following questions to a particular situation or person, But most importantly, you have to be truthful to yourself. 

  • What’s the first thing I thought about?
  • Why do I feel this way? 
  • How am I going to respond?
  • What factors influenced my decisions?
  • Did I let my negative thoughts consume me?

2. Develop Self-Compassion

We often hear about self-love and self-care, but it would be best to work on having self-compassion. It would come as easy as treating yourself like your own friend. And as a companion, would you say mean things towards yourself? You wouldn’t.

According to Dr. Neff, people aren’t more compassionate towards themselves because they are afraid of ending up being self-indulgent. That is why they keep themselves in alignment with self-criticisms. But if you learn how to be sympathetic, you would start doing healthy coping mechanisms instead of harmful ones.

3. Accept what you cannot change

Past mistakes and current conditions beyond our control are what keeping individuals practice self-blame. The feeling of powerlessness would induce us to think we deserve hardships.

However, despite being unable to change things, we could focus on manifesting the power of shifting our directions towards the path we wanted to cross. When you’re concerned about the moment, you have to respond wisely while considering your peace.

There are things we couldn’t control, but we can assure ourselves in hopes of the future. Mistakes are yet to be lessons to learn from, and making ones would help us grow.

4. Stay Away from Things that Lower Your Self-esteem

You have to let go of the things that depreciate your self-worth. May it be people, circumstances, or stuff you come across online, anything that hinders you in developing self-esteem must be dismissed. While you recognize that challenges are part of growth, there’s a thin line between what makes you stronger and miserable.

Surround yourself with the things that motivate you as well as people who genuinely support you. Having the most salutary things within our inner circle would bring out the most becoming within ourselves.

5. Recognize your progress

Whenever we’re hard on ourselves, we can’t help but divulge ourselves over any accomplishments or achievements. Worse, we even forget about it. While it can make you feel out of ease at the start, do you know that thinking about your accolades and things you’ve done right actually changes the way we think on a positive note? That’s right.

There’s no more satisfying way than to celebrate and focus on every life lesson you may achieve. Try to think of a specific daily routine wherein you would take time to find five stuff that you should be proud of after spending a day. You could even try saying it out loud in front of a mirror to feel the vibe more. 

After all, you can only think that whatever challenge life may present to you, think of it as an avenue that will make you a better version of yourself.

 6. Break the cycle of negativity 

There’s no one going to deny that it takes a thorough process before breaking the cycle of negativity. It becomes even harder when you never realize falling into this trap. Whenever we are presented with an uncomfortable situation, the tendency to generate negative thoughts increases rapidly. Being in that trap only makes you wonder how to get out of that slump.

It’s completely normal to feel negative, or sad as it’s a given aspect of being normal and human, after all. ABPP- Board Certified Cognitive and Behavioral Therapist Peter J. Economou stated that most people have negative thoughts and that the majority of our thoughts are negative. Trying and learning to accept it will drive us to gain a healthy harmony in dealing with these thoughts to avoid affecting our behavior.

If you ever feel that you have a difficult phase to escape your negative ideas inside your head, always remember that you’re never alone. What you can do is to learn and develop healthy activities to improve your behavior and habits.

7.Seek Support

You don’t have to go through this all by yourself. Remember that you’re not alone, and seeking help and guidance would impact you in the most beneficial ways. You could begin with cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) to help you stabilize yourself in controlling your thoughts and feelings.

Conclusion

Being too hard on ourselves affects our overall relationship with others. It hinders us from recovering from the past as well as thriving opportunities in present times. Fortunately, we could regain ourselves by practicing the ways of eliminating harsh self-criticisms. Building better mental health would enhance your ability to overcome stress and hardships. Now you’re finally able to retrieve from life’s difficulties.

Sources:

Suzy.greaves. (2020, July 28). 10 ways to overcome low self-esteem. Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://www.psychologies.co.uk/10-ways-overcome-low-self-esteem

Stop Being Hard on Yourself: 5 Tips for Learning Life Lessons. (2017, September 29). Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://tinybuddha.com/blog/stop-being-hard-on-yourself-5-tips-for-learning-life-lessons/

Kim, L. (2015, December 08). 12 Ways to Stop Being So Hard on Yourself. Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://www.inc.com/larry-kim/12-ways-to-stop-being-so-hard-on-yourself.html

Shauna Shapiro, P. (2020, July 10). How to Stop Being So Hard on Yourself. Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://goop.com/wellness/mindfulness/how-to-stop-being-so-hard-on-yourself/

Jacobson, L., & Name. (2019, October 11). Always Being Hard on Yourself? 7 Ways to Halt the Habit. Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://www.harleytherapy.co.uk/counselling/being-hard-on-yourself.htm

How to Stop the Cycle of Negativity. (2019, September 01). Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://www.worthy.com/blog/divorce/healing/how-to-stop-the-cycle-of-negativity/

(n.d.). Retrieved November 01, 2020, from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/raising-low-self-esteem/

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