Ah, your inner critic, arch enemy of all creative artists, who keeps you underachieving and allows you to create at only a fraction of your full potential.
“You’re not a REAL artist,” “You don’t deserve time alone on your creative projects,” “Why even start a new project, you’ll only either mess it up or abandon it like all the other ones,” are just 3 of the kind of damaging comments regularly flung your way.
But your inner critic needn’t be so negative and destructive. You see, it’s actually trying to help, just in a clumsy way. Here’s why, and the 5 steps you can take to end those negative and creativity-killing conversations:
- Acknowledge your inner critic. Putting your fingers in your ears and going “La, la, la, I can’t hear you” just isn’t going to work. Your inner critic is devious and mischievous and will do all it can to scupper your creative efforts surreptitiously. The first step to limiting its impact is to simply be aware and recognize the times when those negative conversations appear. The more you do this, the easier it becomes.
- Realize the deeper intention. Your inner critic isn’t a bad person, honest! The deeper intention behind all those negative comments is to look after you, to protect you from getting hurt. If you never try any new creative artwork, then you can’t fail, you can’t mess it up. So the inner critic is simply doing all it can to keep you from that possible pain, albeit in a strange way.
- Thank your inner critic. Once you’ve acknowledged the times when your inner critic is most chatty, and realized the deeper intention behind its actions, you can thank it, let it know its efforts are appreciated: “Dear Fred (or whatever you wish to call your inner critic), I recognize your efforts in trying to protect me from getting hurt, and thank you sincerely for your kind consideration.”
- Move on and create anyway. Continuing on from your conversation with Fred in step 3, let your inner critic know that you’re going to create anyway: “I understand why you come out with such negative comments and try to keep me safe, and I’d like to let you know that whatever you say, I’m just going to carry on and create what’s important to me anyway...”
- Repeat to fade. Like anything, we get better with practice. The process from steps 1 to 4 can be repeated each time you hear those negative voices in your head. The more you do this, the lesser the impact your inner critic will have, until it’s reduced to a barely audible mumbling in the background.
Follow these simple and powerful steps to end those destructive conversations with your negative inner critic. You can start right away.
Would you like to kick-start your creativity today? Then I invite you to download your free copy of the powerful and practical Explode Your Creativity! Action Workbook at http://www.CoachCreative.com.