Have You Met Your Inner Critic?

Most of us are well aware of the voice inside our head that is relentlessly criticizing our every move. You know, the one that can always find fault or worry in whatever may be going on at the moment. As humans, one thing we cannot escape is our thoughts. Our thoughts are so very powerful! Thoughts are energy, and thoughts become the things and events in our lives. We create our life based on our thoughts. 

We think between 60-80 thousand thoughts per day. That’s a lot of activity! But did you know that only about 5% of those thoughts are unique. The rest of them are simply repeating thoughts, things that we rehash over and over again. Certainly not very useful. And even more disturbing is the fact that 80% of our thoughts slant toward the negative. Yep, we are wired by design to look for the negative in situations. Our brains have evolved from those early days, when we roamed the earth in search of food, battling the elements to assure our survival. We had to go negative and assume we were in danger at every moment just to protect ourselves. But in today’s world this thinking is not necessary, and can even be harmful to your health.

We know that negative thinking is not good for us. It feeds our worry, fears, stress, anxiety, and sometimes even paranoia, creating negative emotions that can affect how we feel about ourselves, our work, our relationships and life in general. Improving the quality of our thoughts is paramount to relieving stress and improving our sense of well-being. 

How can we improve our thoughts? Become an observer, a hyper-vigilant observer of what you are thinking. When you find yourself spiraling down the rabbit hole of negativity, intervene! Notice what you are thinking and ask yourself if this thought process is serving you. If not, reach for the next best thought. Turn your attention to gratitude, notice the things that are going right in your life instead of focusing on the negative. Once you condition yourself to this process of  “thought intervention,” you will begin to notice small changes in your demeanor and attitude that will lead to BIG changes over time.