From Attitude Reconstruction: A Blueprint for Building a Better Life by Jude Bijou
An Attitude about Yourself, associated primarily with the emotion of sadness:
Self-Critical (self-deprecating, self-loathing, demanding perfection)
Solution: Appreciate yourself.
What You’re Experiencing
- Believe your caretaker’s, parent’s, or other’s negative judgments and demeaning labels
- Trash yourself by calling yourself “stupid,” “pathetic,” “a loser”
- Turn anger inward and beat yourself up for not living up to your unreasonably high expectations with “I should have…” or “I shouldn’t have…”
- Take one problem and turn it into two; add brutal self-loathing to the mistake itself — a social blunder, poor financial decision, or thoughtless comment
The Price You Pay
- Pressuring yourself to do and say everything perfectly, dread making mistakes and taking risks
- Hating yourself, making self-deprecating comments
- Punishing yourself, such as cutting or starving yourself
- Raising the bar to be perfect, believing your worth is determined by what you do
- Expecting unrealistic possibilities, judging yourself negatively
- Limiting your own potential
How to Change
- When you make mistakes praise what you did well, and look for the lesson
- Replace self-demeaning messages with self-appreciations either when berating yourself or being criticized by others
- Ignore discomfort in saying nice things about yourself, start with something small like a positive trait, talent, or quality
- Compliment your abilities, characteristics, qualities, efforts
- Recite self-appreciations and soak in their meaning, stand tall and proud, nod your head up and down, and physically express any emotions that surface (laughing is good)
- Try writing one, two or three self-appreciations each day, and at the end of a week, read list out loud with enthusiasm, conviction, and a smile
Vigorously interrupt all the “Yes, buts” or discounting thoughts while appreciating self
- I have a good sense of humor and can be funny.
- I’m a dependable friend.
- I exercise and eat healthy food.
- I’m a loving mom.
- I keep in touch with my grandfather.
Start small and appreciate little accomplishments.
- I paid my rent on time.
- I’ve resisted doughnuts for three days.
- I didn’t say something grumpy when the alarm went off this morning.
- I helped my neighbor jumpstart his car’s battery.
To make statements more powerful, begin sentences with “I appreciate that I…”, “I like that I…”, or “I love that I…”
- You accept and respect yourself, are gentle with yourself, and become your biggest fan
- You feel proud of your accomplishments and yourself
- You are increasingly more confident