Skip to main content Skip to bottom nav

How to Silence Your Inner Critic

Five ways to reframe the negative voice inside your head and increase self-esteem
Silence your inner critic

What is your inner critic?


Your inner critic is the voice inside of your head that tells you that you are not good enough, not worthy, not attractive and all of those negative concepts you conceptualised from very early on. Luckily, your inner critic is NOT reality…but it is something that whilst sometimes being very negative, actually guides you in times to bring the moral and value constructs you wish in your life. It might use phrases like, “You should”, “What is stopping you from doing this?!” or “You are not as attractive as they are.” It might even sound like someone you know, like an overly critical parent, teacher or sibling. It is significantly different for each of us with regards to frequency and what our self-talk includes.

Your inner critic and self-esteem

Your inner critic can have a profound effect on your self-esteem. It is an internal enemy that can sometimes take away positive feelings about ourselves and can undermine our performance at school or work. We may even start a cycle of self-doubt, self-denial, distrust of ourselves and others, and eventually the cycle may even lead to substance abuse. It’s not all bad though! Your inner critic can actually help us on our path of boundaries and what constitutes positive or negative behaviour. As mentioned before, it can help keep us aligned with our goals, values and morals.

Coping techniques to banish the negative aspect of our inner critic
  • Awareness. Once we are aware of something we can begin work on trying to change it. Try to question what it is telling you. Many of us do not realise when the inner critic is in our heads. We often go about subconsciously living with it and not realising the effect it has on us. Identify the voice of your inner critic and the triggers. Can you give your inner critic a name? Giving something a name means that we can correspond the feelings associated with it with something that actually exists so we have even more power to make our inner critic positive!

  • Your inner critic keeps you safe, analyse what it is asking of you and what changes you may need to make in your life.

  • Positive affirmations are positive statements and they can change how you feel about yourself and some of these may include:

    I trust my inner wisdom and intuition.
    I breathe in calmness and breathe out nervousness.
    I choose to see the light that I am to this world.
    I forgive myself, for we all make mistakes.


  • Reframing is a method rooted in cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). This is very crucial at using this critic to work with you and not against you. For example, your inner critic might tell you, “She is way more attractive than you are!” So you can tell your inner critic, “Whilst she has attractive qualities, so do I and these include…..”

  • Self-acceptance… ask yourself “What do I accept about myself and what do I want to accept more about myself?”

 

Explore and reframe your inner critic further with the help of one of 7 Cups’ online therapists. Need to vent? A 7 Cups Listener is always standing by or join our community.


Posted: 08 January 2019
Share Tweet

Lisa De Regt, MBPsS

Lisa is a licensed mental health counselor with an eclectic style of therapy to fit every client's needs.

Other Articles Articles by Lisa De Regt, MBPsS

How To Be Involved With Your Kids Without Being a Helicopter Parent

It's difficult to know what the right parenting approach is; here's help from a therapist and mom of three
Posted 03 June 2019

5 Ways to Cultivate Self-Care as a 7 Cups Listener or Caregiver

Why giving yourself the same compassion you're giving to others is essential to your wellbeing
Posted 04 April 2019

5 Things to Know Before Your First Therapy Session

Here's what to expect from your therapist along the way to a healthier you
Posted 07 March 2019

Related Articles

Inner Conflict Eating You Up?

Three strategies that can help you gain inner peace
Posted 12 September 2019

When Is It Time To Start Taking Anxiety Seriously?

Anxiety is a common mental illness in the US that is highly treatable if it begins to affect your ability to carry out work or social tasks
Posted 12 September 2019

How the Fear of Hurting Others Creates Anxiety

If we are afraid of constantly hurting others, we may not do justice to our true selves
Posted 12 September 2019