- berate yourself for making mistakes?
- criticize yourself for doing things or not doing things?
- tell yourself that you should be like someone else?
- ruminate about your conversations with people, going over what you could have said or done differently?
Is the belief that we need to do everything perfectly to receive loving attention, care, and success. It carries a deep fear of making a mistake
As a result, perfectionism leads to procrastination, insomnia, anxiety, and self-hatred. It also makes learning much harder and more stressful.
You may not hear this voice in the same way as a spoken one, but in many ways, it constantly repeats negative messages to you. Your inner voice can have a huge impact, even though you are not aware of it.
Self-esteem continually fluctuates and is affected by events and encounters with other people. Observing ourselves in relation to other people can be a helpful source of learning and feedback. Yet all too often comparison slips into competition and others become a yardstick by which we evaluate ourselves as good or bad, competent or inadequate.
The reality is, we are all unique. We have our own strengths and limitations. There are aspects of our behaviour and appearance we may seek to change or develop, but a sense of self is also based on self-awareness and self-acceptance.
You are no better or worse than anyone else and they are no better or worse than you.
Appropriate shame means I feel bad about the bad things I've done, and still hold myself in warm regard as a flawed human being.
In order to be intimate you have to bring yourself up from shame and down from grandiosity. This is an essential skill in relationships.
Your past experiences shape what you learn about your worth.
From infancy, we look for encouragement and approval. We have a basic human need to be wanted, noticed, and included. We want to contribute, to be of value, and to make a difference - in other words to matter to those around us.
A lot of the problem comes when you learn that you matter because of what you do. Parents can be tough taskmasters in seeking the best for their children. Perhaps your parents were abusive or neglectful, leaving you feeling unwanted or worse, hated. Confusing and inconsistent family rules and boundaries make it hard to know what to expect, and when.
Many people we have worked with have a sense of not being good enough for their parents and are still trying to be. Others seek counselling because of trauma associated with being different from their peers when young and having been shamed for it.
Your presence is all that is needed to be worthy and is the essence of self-acceptance.