Are you your worst critic? Challenging your inner judge with a little self-love and compassion can help prevent future bouts of depression; here’s how to start:
Realize the harm
It’s important to realize that how we treat ourselves makes a big different. Studies now show that regular self-criticism can be harmful to your health. Research tells us that this consistent self-negative loop can be responsible for a suppressed immune function, and thus more vulnerable to medical and mental health woes. A lack of self-compassion is also a predictor of depressive symptoms.
Ban the bully
We all have a version of an internal critic. However, critical, subjective thoughts are just thoughts and not facts. Unfortunately, the more we tell ourselves something, we then tend to believe it without being objective about the truth. It’s a vicious cycle: the more we believe in these awful thoughts, the worse we feel about ourselves and the deeper the depression and anxiety. Experts say it’s essential to learn to notice these thoughts and not react to them. Be the observer, not the bully.
Turn to those you trust
Our inner critic can be so strong sometimes that, despite viewing our accomplishments as real and gaining self-confidence from that, it’s common to think of ourselves as just lucky. This is when we need a reality check. Find family and friends you trust and who have empathy for you, to remind you that you are indeed worthy.
via Esperanza – Hope To Cope
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