If our inner critic has been a dominant theme throughout our lives we may be so used to living with “the voice” that we don’t imagine that there could be a different internal experience. If you’re not sure whether or not the voice you’re hearing is your inner critic here are some ways to recognize it:
- Our inner is harsh and loves black or white thinking. You are either successful or a complete failure.
- Our inner critic poses as the voice of reason but it repeatedly focuses on your problems instead of seeking solutions.
- Our inner critic is the voice that says you need more experience, more qualifications and more expertise.
- Our inner critic is the voice of body perfectionism.
- Our inner critic is a voice that reflects the harshest versions of cultural narratives, institutional norms or the goals and expectations of others.
A quick tool for quieting the inner critic is to imagine the voice receding into space or imagine that you can turn down the volume on it.