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5 Simple Ways to Quit Picking on Yourself

Updated on September 1, 2021
ShyeAnne profile image

ShyeAnne is pursuing happy, healthy and productive ways to age in peace and with grace..

'I was pulling up my sleeve this morning and I punched myself in the face. Don't worry, I deserved it. I have been mad at myself for a while.'

wish for good luck
wish for good luck | Source

I Punched Myself in the Face

I read this funny thing online the other day.

'I was pulling up my sleeve this morning and I punched myself in the face. Don't worry, I deserved it. I've been mad at myself for a while.'

When I first read the above words they struck my funnybone.

I began to think about how often we berate and beat ourselves up with negative self-talk. Acceptance of self sounds like a simple concept to grasp but often there is that niggling little voice of self doubt lurking in the background going, 'you can't do it,you can't do it..' that keeps us from truly believing we are capable of being peaceful, content, happy, healthy, functional humans.

We need to be kind, nurturing and respectful to ourselves. We need to quit picking on ourselves.

Take time to acknowledge your strengths.

Are you a Positive person?

See results

1. Don't Forget to Breath

When I find myself stressed, agitated and/or annoyed as I go about my day, I often realize I have been holding my breath, or have jagged breathing with very little lung movement.

The simple act of breathing correctly is a learned behavior that needs tending to, especially if one is used to a flight or fight syndrome based childhood.

Take 5 deep cleansing breaths to return to a calm center

  • Stand straight, legs slightly parted, arms loose by your sides.
  • Inhale to the count of 5 through your nose as you raise your arms and touch your hands above your head. Imagine you are taking in the oygen through the top of your head.
  • Exhale to the count of 5 through your mouth as you lower your arms to your sides. Imagine you are exhaling through your belly button.
  • Repeat 5 times.

This brief 5 breaths of self-care returns us to a centered, calm energy and enables us to be more effective and efficient with our daily tasks.

Do it, you'll be happy you did!

"Be The Boss of Your Own Brain".

2. Wear Clothing That Fits

For most of us, our body weight fluctuates and we have a few different sizes of clothing in our wardrobe. It is depressing to pull on a pair of jeans and realize they are either too big or too small, not just right like the last time you wore them.

The trick, in order to be kind to yourself, is to take those jeans off and put them back on the shelf, grab a pair that fits the current you and get on with your day. I have the best days when my clothing fits properly. Toss the old and ill-fitting.

Go for the fit!

old and ill fitting
old and ill fitting | Source

Look Yourself In The Eye

me | Source

3. Look Yourself in the Eye Not in the Wrinkle

Look yourself in the eye every morning. Smile and tell yourself you are perfect the way you are.

I taught myself over the past couple of years to look myself in the eye, not in the wrinkle, when I look in the mirror.

All of a sudden I am in my 60's and I have a road map on my face to prove it. Mine is a face that has seen so much joy, hope, love, victory, defeat, sadness and grief.

I appear to have picked up a wrinkle or two for each experience.

Be they genetic or caused by the elements and our own personal experiences, wrinkles are the bane of many a person's existence as we age. In a social climate where youth and smooth skin are heralded and applauded, the bulk of society is left dealing with the wrinkles of time.

How we adapt to the wrinkles on our aging faces and bodies and what if anything we do about it depends on

  • our own personal sense of self worth
  • our economic status
  • our own perception of the visual signs of aging

It seems easier said than done to accept the aging process gracefully.

One way to hasten the acceptance of change in your appearance as you age is to look yourself in the eye for a full minute before you look at the rest of your face. Look directly and with love into your own eyes for a full minute before you focus on the new wrinkle, blemish, sag or droop.

Don't dwell on your perceived imperfections.

Blow yourself a kiss and get on with your day. You will be glad you did!

my mutt
my mutt | Source

Dogs Are Great Ice-Breakers If You're Shy

4. Don't Isolate

We need to nurture our friendships and family connections in life to keep them strong.

It is our responsibility to keep ourselves active, valid, necessary and current in the lives of our friends and loved ones.

It is so important to make time and take time to visit and connect with others. Make a point of seeking out the friends you assume will always just be there. If too much time passes you may look up and everyone is gone.

Regular connections to family, friends and loved ones are integral to our emotional health and well being. Don't deny yourself communication with others. Talk to that person in the grocery store line up or on the park bench you sit down on.

If you find yourself staying indoors most days, get a dog. A dog fills a home with love and is a very good reason to get outdoors every single day.

  • Dogs teach us a lot about unconditional love and are eager to lend an ear
  • Dogs are great ice-breakers if you're shy
  • Dogs provide security and love

Don't deny yourself the company of all the wonderful people in your life.

Get out, reach out, even if it's just for 5 minutes here and there, every single day.

You'll be glad you did!

calming prayer
calming prayer | Source

5. Accept the Things You Cannot Change

Be gentle and respectful to yourself.

To steal a phrase from the Alcoholics Anonymous Handbook, "Accept the things you cannot change".

No truer phrase was ever spoken.

We have a tendency to mull over events from our past. This is an exercise in wasted time because there is no changing the past. The past is written, it is history, signed, sealed, delivered. For better or for worse it is done.

Accept the things you cannot change and move on.

We have a tendency to fret and worry about the way we perceive how things will be in our future. We do have the ability to shape our future but it isn't going to happen when we waste energy wondering how we are going to get there.

The challenge is to stay in the present, the precious present. When we pay attention to what we are experiencing in this moment, when we give the present day our full attention, everything else falls into place and unfolds in the best possible way. then we are able to focus on the things we need to do to achieve our goals and have full-filling lives.

Are you kind to yourself?

See results

In Conclusion, Remember to be the Boss

It's easy to get tumble down a rabbit hole of worry, angst and fear due to of our personal and global past, present and future.

There are many current and on-going events, both natural and human caused, that are creating at the very least, global uneasiness. Many of us have lives fraught with challenges that keep us tossing and turning at night.

As a result many of us are living with high stress levels. Unchecked stress wreaks havoc on the mind, body and soul. We CAN choose to pick kinder, gentler ways of thinking to help our own selves live in a happy, healthy and productive way. We can teach ourselves to rein in our despairing, hopeless, panicked thoughts. We can teach ourselves to harness the galloping negativity that tears through our brains, usually in the wee hours of the morning.

When I began practicing being the boss of my own brain it was very challenging to stay on point. Some established thought processes are like stubborn stains. If you can persevere it does get easier.

When you find yourself having black thoughts simply yell CANCEL! really loud, in your head or right out loud.

  • Be consistent.
  • Don't get discouraged.
  • You will get results.
  • You will be happy you did.

Be the boss of your own brain. Be the leader. Don't take the easy way out and let your brain 'quick pick' what you are going to think about. When you realize you are having negative thoughts CANCEL them and choose a positive thought process.

Wax on..Wax off.

Choose something else to think about.

Make it a Great Day!

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 ShyeAnne


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