Self Criticism Part 2
“We are often our own worst critic, even our own worst enemy when we allow our self-criticism to be so harsh and destructive it causes failure to become a self-fulfilling prophecy in our live…” — Rick Cox
In my early twenties I made a choice to be a winner and not a loser. To do so, I had to follow a much disciplined regimen; a regimen similar to the diet and life style given a cancer or heart patient. In these regimens one has to follow an extremely strict and bland diet. They could no longer eat what they had in the past. They had to avoid certain foods and spices. This meant a drastic change in their life style therefore, a drastic change in where they went and with whom they chose to be around.
The reason for this is obvious as it can be difficult to be around others when you are going to give in and get off the regimen for this may cost your life. If you will recognize how valuable your personal self-image is in that it will determine how well you live and enjoy your life, you will begin to choose who you are around, what you think, what you say as well as that to which you listen.
Dealing with your self-image has to be approached in the same manner and with the same discipline you would apply should you be told to do it or die. Sometimes you just can’t hang out with the old crowd for a while. You must take a break while you refocus, regroup, and recharge. This is the BLAND of the diet. You are basically doing the same old bland things over and over until your heart is strong and secure. You are doing it until it becomes first nature. This helps allow time to change what you hear, what you read, what you speak and thus, this will eventually change your thoughts. It isn’t that you do not care for these people you may be choosing to avoid for a while; it is simply a necessity if you are to effect a change in your self-image.
With a healthy self-image the harsh criticism and self-destructive behavior will no longer be predominant in your thoughts. You will be free to make mistakes and move on without those around you beating you down with your own actions. Eventually you will no longer run by the guilt of missing the mark. You will be free instead to try again without the binding chains of that failure tape playing over and over as a self-fulfilling prophecy ensuring your defeat.
No criticism as harsh – no pain so severe… I am reminded of Karen Carpenter who unfortunately was unable to better her self-image and thus succumbed as the self-criticism and self-inflicted pain caused her eventual death. This immensely talented and beautiful young lady was so hard on herself; she was unable to live up to her own ideas of what she should be or what she should look like. She eventually lost to a poor self- image. She was convinced she wasn’t good enough and it – the severity of the pain – defeated her. Karen was unfortunately, never able to climb this hill. You may believe yourself to be in the same state of mind, but you don’t have to wind up with the same fate. You can change your fate by changing your thoughts.
None of us are perfect and we are not going to attain perfection while we live in this body. None of us will hit the bulls-eye every time, but we must learn to give it our best effort and leave the rest to God. God can handle our shortcomings. David in the Old Testament was not perfect yet he was called a man after God’s own heart. As a matter of fact his life was one of a sordid past with him being quite the unsavory character. If you study David, he would not necessarily have been seen as someone worthy of being followed, at least in most aspects of his life. He committed adultery, murder, counted all of his horses, took census of his armies, counted his money, married many wives, ate of the Table of Showbread from the Temple of God (a major sin), and was not a good father or husband yet, he did not allow himself to be defeated by self-criticism and guilt. He was able to accept the fact he made mistakes, but he let the past go and moved on with his life. God did the rest and because of this David climbed the hill and made it over the top.
What David ultimately did was not allow those around to condemn him by their thoughts of him and what they believed him to be, which in many cases most would have thought him a hypocrite. As a matter of fact this is what his first wife Michael thought of him when she saw him dancing and singing before God as she watched him out of her window. She knew he had committed adultery. She knew he had broken many of God’s laws and yet she watched as he danced and sang before God. Her problem was she was focused on someone else rather than herself. Had she been living her life unto God and before God instead of comparing herself to others, she may have gone on to become something, but after this episode the Bible never mentions her again. Our last view is of her being bitter…and she probably died the same.
So, the choice is yours. You can either believe you are a loser and speak negatively or you can get on the path to being a winner by believing and then saying: I am thrilled to life; I am a winner; I have a great mind; I am going to live; I am full of life; I will remember; I can achieve; I am talented and I have gifts. Most important, you can start believing and applying the fact everything you need is in you for God has put it there. God has put in you that which will help build you, not that which will tear you down. Accept that which builds and reject that which tears
Best of LUCK as you
Labor Under Correct Knowledge…