I wonder if you have a person in your life who tends to be a little critical?
It has been a difficult and confusing relationship for me.
Does this person love me? Absolutely. I am sure of it.
But why would someone who loves me talk to me in this way?
One day, after a particularly painful interaction with that person,
my brilliant husband said that’s just the way they show they care.
It was an aha moment of the most profound sort.
Not only did it instantly release me from the suffering I created with my thoughts, but I realized that I do the same thing to myself.
We all do.
We all have a critical voice inside our heads.
Your critical voice is your primitive brain’s love language.
It wants to protect you, keep you safe, make sure you never make that mistake or any mistake ever again.
So, it reminds you over and over that you aren’t good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, lovable enough, etc., so you won’t try and fail and feel pain and possibly die.
During that aha moment, I instantly changed my relationship with that person but also with myself.
This person is important to me, and I want to have a relationship with them.
I know they’ll probably never change, and neither will the instinct of my primitive brain.
However, I can change by allowing them to be them, understanding where they are coming from, and not allowing their opinion to affect me.
I can have compassion for both of us. I can appreciate the intention.
I can validate myself.
I can now respond to both critical voices with compassion, understanding, and love.
That feels so much better than judgment, defensiveness, and pain.
And when I feel better, I respond better, and when I respond better, I have a better life.