It is definitely easier to judge someone else than it is to judge ourselves because often we are too close to the situation to see something clearly. By that does not stop us from being our own harshest critic.
When I first started being kinder to myself, and by extension I’m kinder to others too, it was really hard. Often I would catch myself putting myself down in my head- I look fat in those jeans, I’m not good enough, I am a bad driver, I make bad decisions, etc. and I still have this negative voice every once in a while. But it was most vocal when I first stated paying attention to it.
The first step is noticing it. When you first start listening to your inner dialogue, you would be amazed at the things you say to yourself. If someone said those things to you out loud, you would not keep them in your company for very long.
Once I was noticing what I was saying, I started by forgiving myself before I tried to reverse anything. I found this step to be incredibly important because I had to let myself off my own hook. I forgave myself for not being perfect, for wanting to be perfect and for setting impossible standards. I forgave myself for being mean and weak and for making myself feel small. This released whatever anger I had tied up in the negative talk. It washed it clean, so I could start a new slate.
Then, I completely let myself off the hook. I dropped the standards and began practicing gratitude for what I am and for what I have. Giving thanks for things as they are was such a wonderful practice for me. I began to see all the blessings and love that is already in my life. When I was feeling lonely and unloved, I noticed all the great friends that I have that do love me. Love comes from more than one place, it isn’t all from romantic relationships.
After realizing all the great things I have going in, it became easier to realize that other people don’t care much about what I am doing. Most people are too wrapped up in their own crap to even take notice of you, let alone spend any real amount of time thing about you. Someone once told me “what other people think about me is none of my business.” And it is true. What they think about me isn’t going to change my behavior anymore. As long as what I do makes me happy, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks because it’s not their life.
Living in a way that makes room for your own guidance to speak up and take the steering wheel is incredibly freeing. Maybe things don’t look the way you thought, but I bet they are probably pretty great if you took a minute to look around and appreciate it.
It was so freeing to realize that things are perfect as they are, I have plenty going well in my life and I have no need to gripe or nit-pick over small things that aren’t perfect. When I stopped judging myself, I could let my true self come forward and express itself.