May 4, 2015 By Andrea Schulman
Ever have the feeling that you’re just not good enough? Though it’s pretty normal for people to beat up on themselves, doing so can make life a lot more challenging as it can cause anxiety, depression and low self-esteem. To keep negative, self-critical thoughts from dragging you down, here are a few reasons to cut yourself some slack!
1. Repeat after me: There’s no such thing as perfect!
What would perfect even be? What’s its age, IQ, religious preference, and blood type? How tall is it? Is it outgoing and funny or introspective and thoughtful? Is it a student, a CEO or a stay at home parent? There’s no perfect way to be, we simply are what we are. We are unique, and there’s nothing specific that we are supposed to do, be or have.
2. Everyone has struggles, problems and flaws, and many of them are much more challenging to deal with than our own.
When you’re feeling down on yourself, take inventory of the people who are around you. What are their flaws? What do they struggle with? Identifying the imperfections in other people can help you feel a little bit better about where you are in this moment.
3. Someone probably loves your flaws exactly as they are.
Sometimes the things we hate about ourselves are exactly what others love about us. Think about some of your favorite actors, comedians, teachers, friends, coworkers and family members-chances are their flaws are exactly what make them the special characters they are.
4. You’ll be looking back on today’s problems differently some day. How you feel is temporary.
For example, when you look in the mirror maybe you see signs of aging, and that stresses you out. However, ten years from now you’ll be looking at pictures of yourself thinking “Wow! I was so young!” Likewise, you might have been completely devastated when you failed a math test in 7th grade but today the test seems completely insignificant and unimportant.
How we feel about ourselves in the present moment is simply our perspective from where we stand in this exact space. Someday our perspective will change and we will see things differently, so please realize that feelings of self-criticism are conditional and temporary.
5. No one else is ever going to be as critical of you as you are.
Sure, it might be embarrassing to say something inappropriate in a meeting, get fired or take a bad picture, but no one else is watching you as closely as you are yourself. We are all a little narcissistic and self-absorbed, so trust that the people around you are more concerned with their own issues than they are with yours. Although we might feel like there is a giant spotlight on our imperfections and they are being broadcasted around the world, no one’s really paying too much attention to them.
6. We’re all headed to the same place anyway.
Not to be too morbid, but all we really know for certain is that at some point, we are going to die. It doesn’t matter who was the most attractive, the most accomplished, the smartest or made the least amount of mistakes. We all share a similar fate no matter what we do, how we look or what we have. Being hard on ourselves only makes the journey less pleasant.
7. You deserve love and acceptance, especially from the person you’re with all day, every day!
We all need love to be our best selves. Knowing this, please remember that you are the best person to love and accept yourself, because you are the only one you spend time with 24 hours a day. If you want to be happy and have good self-esteem your best bet is to treat yourself with kindness and allow yourself to be exactly what you are, flaws and all.
So the next time you’re feeling down on yourself take a few minutes to get some perspective and cut yourself some slack. Though feelings of self-criticism are normal and will pop up from time to time, there’s no reason to dwell on them and let them drag you down!