"Judging ourselves harshly for mistakes is the Critical Parent." BRB p. 307
The criticism we heard growing up, whether it was from our parents, teachers or others, even other children, became so internalized that we learned to let it define us. This wasn't a conscious decision. It's something that happened gradually.
As adults, we carry these shaming messages with us in the form of our own personal inner critical parent. This is why we continue to ‘beat ourselves up' when we miss the nuance of a situation or make even the smallest error in judgment. These ‘mistakes' might be as simple as walking out the door in front of someone and accidentally cutting them off. Or maybe we're having trouble following a conversation. Our critical inner parent jumps right in with, "How could you be so stupid?" or "What's wrong with you?" When we allow this voice to rule our thoughts, we can second-guess almost everything we do.
As we learn in ACA to silence that critical voice, we replace those messages with more loving thoughts that tell us we haven't done anything wrong - we're okay! If we accidentally cut someone off, we apologize and move on. And we realize there could be many reasons why we're not following what someone is saying. Maybe they aren't painting a complete picture, so we can ask them to explain or rephrase.
Our new responses show strength and they empower us.
On this day I will practice silencing my critical parent and affirm for myself that I am human, and it's okay to be imperfect.
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of Alcoholics / Dysfunctional Families
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