How to Combat Being Overly Self-Critical
As a writer and content creator, one of my biggest weaknesses is that I am a perfectionist and I can be overly self-critical. I tend to be really hard on myself when I feel like things aren’t perfect or they don’t turn out the way I envisioned them to. I can give 100% in writing a blog, producing a podcast episode, or even doing a photoshoot and still feel like I’ve could have done more, even though I gave it my all. As a result, I often times feel discouraged, overwhelmed and even misguided. Don’t get me wrong, being self-critical is an important part of my growth and self-discovery journey because growth comes from when you’re always looking for ways to improve. However, this challenge comes when I am overly self-critical to the point where I feel overwhelmed and discouraged and I am beating myself up about what I could have done better even when I know I gave it my all.
The three biggest things I’ve learned to do when I find myself being overly self-critical are to seek feedback, remember my why and celebrate the small wins.
Throughout my journey, I’ve learned that no one will ever completely understand my dreams, my vision and my purpose the way I do. God gave it to me for a reason. However, when I feel discouraged and overly self-critical, it is encouraging to hear good feedback from my family, friends, and blog and podcast audiences who are excited and inspired by my work. Hearing positive feedback about my work when I am being hard on myself gives me a sense of hope and also helps me to see that I may be being overly self-critical. I do believe that I am my biggest critic but hearing the good things that others have to say is motivation, encouragement, and reminds me that I am doing something right no matter how hard I am on myself.
Remembering my why always brings me back into a positive headspace. When I find I am being hard on myself and I feel discouraged, I sometimes take a step back and ask myself, why did you start your blog? Why did you start your podcast? Why are you creating content? Asking myself these questions is always encouraging because it helps me to remember why I started producing content in the first place, and that’s because one, I love to write, and two, I want to use my talents to inspire other people. Reminding myself of my why and my purpose is always a way to help me feel encouraged and motivated to start again and/or get back on track.
Lastly, in the midst of my hard work and consistency, I always try to actively pause and celebrate the small wins. I set goals throughout my growth process and when I achieve a goal, whether big or small, I celebrate it because I deserve to celebrate my wins. This helps me feel more confident in my work, in achieving my goals, and in setting goals for the future. I can sometimes get so caught up in trying to figure out what I could have done better, that I forget to celebrate myself for the things I did well and the goal I achieved. Celebrating myself always gives me that push, that motivation, that inspiration to keep going because I know there’s so much more to celebrate further along in this process.