Why is it easier for some people to criticise themselves than it is for them to praise themselves?
This is a very good question. Just from my personal life experience so far, it seems to met that some people are not brought up in the most loving homes and criticism is all they get, no praise. Others can truly be uncomfortable with praise for this reason and a whole host of others such as internal self-esteem issues whereas others simply don't want attention brought to them in any form, including praise and they reject even positive attention by criticizing themselves.
Some people want to be accepted by everyone so they lower their self esteem around people to give others the sense of superiority. I observe social interactions all the time at work and I find that the 'Popular' people all have low self esteem when talking to them about their own development. I tend to find the ones who are confident in themselves just get their head down and crack on with the work not having too much social interaction.
Maybe some people just crave attention from other people, so it is easy to just put the barrier up and criticize themselves.
Are we criticising ourselves? Or are we criticising an idea we have about ourselves? In other words, are we disparaging a self-image we have subconsciously created? I think you will find the latter is the case.
Most of us have no idea what or who we really are. We've fallen for the trap that all fall into: believing that the outside conditioning we receive and interpret to be what we really are. If we're given plenty of love and praise we grow up with good self-esteem. If we're put down, belittled constantly when growing up, we develop poor self-esteem. But the esteem, though comfortable or not comfortable is not who we are.
I suggest if you feel that you criticise your own self too much, read Louise L Hay's best seller 'You Can Heal Your Life.' It will show you how to set about doing so. But I cannot stress enough that we are not the self-image created by our own imaginings. Understand that at the EXPERIENTIAL level and your life will change...and significantly change...for the good.
Lots of people feel it's vain or egotistical to praise themselves.
Some people even have a hard time accepting complements!
Example: "Ricki, That's a beautiful dress." (Reply) "This old thing?"
They simply can't say: "Thank you."
This probably explains why so many books written on the topic of "self love", building self-esteem, learning to love yourself...etc are bestsellers!
Another sad fact is a lot of people during their "formative years" of childhood were never praised by their own parents. If your own parents don't make you feel "special" it's going to take a lot of work to convince yourself you are. It's even worse if you weren't accepted by other children at school and other social gatherings.
"The Greatest Love of All is Learning to Love Yourself."
There are parents who give out more criticism than praise. Such parents strongly contend that giving praise of any kind makes children be satisfied, comfortable, even conceited. They maintain that giving out criticism to children strengthens psychologically. As a result of such inculcation, people believe that criticizing themselves is the only legitimate route to self-growth & self-improvement.
Outside of parents, there is the religious inculcation that humans are imperfect and must constantly strive for perfection. There are people who feel that they are always missing THAT MARK so to speak. They are always striving to be and do better. They maintain that they are never enough in and of themselves.
Then there is the Western cultural and societal imperative that we must always win and be THE BEST. Many people feel that they are woefully inadequate so they push themselves to be THAT SUCCESS whether at work, physically, or in other endeavors. To be satisfied and be comfortable, in their eyes, means merely settling and merely settling is equated to living a mediocre life without meaning and substance.
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