How to Silence Your Inner Critic

Tips to help you ignore the negative thoughts in your head so you can live life to the fullest.

Your inner critic is the part of your psyche or ego that sparks self-judgement and demeaning thoughts. Living with a strong inner critic can make you feel self-conscious or ashamed at times. When you set expectations too high, the inner critic is what causes you to be overcome by discouragement. Follow these steps to help quiet your inner critic so you can go out and live life to the fullest.

1. Study your inner critic
Pay attention to the voice that your inner critic embodies. You may realize that this voice is not your own and isn’t how you truly feel, but how someone else wants you to feel. Once you realize these thoughts are not truly yours, they often become easier to ignore.

2. Get to the bottom of it
Find out what the underlying need is that your inner critic is trying to meet. Determining the root cause of a subconscious thought can help you integrate that need into your conscious thought. Doing this can help you replace the demeaning voice with an encouraging voice.

3. Set boundaries
Much like you set boundaries with other people, the same goes for your inner critic. You need to be able to tell it “no” from time to time, or that it needs to back off. Keep it in check and it will be less likely to control your every thought.

4. Treat it with compassion
Understand that the inner critic may actually exist to help you, not always hinder you. You should be able to respectfully change your own mind about certain things. For instance, your inner critic may try to convince you not to take a new job because you’re giving up job security, but you can counter that thought process by convincing yourself that this decision is what is best for you.

5. Remind yourself
Make mental notes of your accomplishments and value to others to help you prove to yourself that you are good enough the way you are. Accepting who you are is the ultimate way to drown out your inner critic.

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