INNER CRITIC: The darker side
The real dark side of the inner critic is the inner judge.
In a nutshell, you could explain it like this: when the inner critic hurts us too much to the point that it becomes unbearable, we unconsciously turn our attention outwards, towards others and their flaws and judge them.
For example, if our inner critic is really disappointed in us because we are not keeping the pace and we seem lazy and unmotivated and the level of criticism has become really emotionally painful and unbearable, what often happens is that our psyche, to protect us, begins to focus outside of us.
As we are working hard to meet the high standard of the inner critic so that he doesn't become even more cruel to us, we begin to harbor a kind of resentment for all the lazy people we see around us. Anyone who doesn't work hard at that moment becomes shamefully lazy. This allows us to create some space between us and the critic, not feeling it so painfully anymore, we can then take a breath of fresh air because the critic now judges the other and gives us some space.
This is how the inner judge is born.
Another example to explain this phenomenon:
The little girl who grew up learning that a good young lady speaks softly, behaves respectfully and if in trouble she is protected by an authority, will grow up being harshly criticized by her inner critic whenever she screams, is rude or aggressive towards others. She will then avoid all these behaviors and when she meets other women who behave like she never behaves, she will most likely judge them.
The people we judge show us something of ourselves, of the choices we have made unknowingly growing up and that have to do with the rules we have learned without really taking the time to consider all the pros and cons of such a clear-cut division between good and bad.
The result is that we often lack some flexibility in order, for instance, to allow ourselves to be lazy if necessary because, for example, we are on the verge of a nervous breakdown and need to slow down our pace at work. In the case of the decent young lady, she may lack the psychic flexibility to be assertive if she finds herself alone in a situation where someone is taking advantage of her kindness and no one can protect her. It is a pity she does not have access to her aggressive/assertive side in her becasue that might help her enormously at that time. This is just to give you a couple of examples, the situations are endless and can be much more complex.
Every aspect of the personality that we completely reject can mean one day that we will not have access to parts of ourselves, which if integrated could be useful for our life.
The integration process occurs when you expand to embrace and allow more parts of your personality to become part of your inner team, such as those that were previously unknown / unused / disowned by you. It's a fascinating way of working that gives you back parts of yourself.
The trick is to clean up a quality of that layer of judgment that has made the essential quality no longer visible. Then aggression becomes assertiveness, arrogance becomes self-confidence, laziness becomes the ability to slow down and relax, let go etc.
You can work on these aspects and clean up some qualities by doing an exercise based on the quadrants designed by Daniel Ofman.
You start by thinking about someone you judge to find out what's behind it.
When you know the quality or trait you judge, you know what your allergy is. And you know what quality you choose to use in your life, which is the opposite of what you judge. For the girl we talked about it is aggression that she judges, that is, her allergy.
What she chooses instead of aggression is trust in the system. When she trusts the system too much, she can become a victim of errors or abuse from the part of the system. Her being so passively trusting makes her too vulnerable to become a victim. The antidote to being a victim is being alert and assertive. You will notice that only when assertiveness and vigilance become excessive can you speak of aggression.
This is how you can use Daniel Ofman's core quadrant to redeem your renegade selves and expand into a more complete personality.
When you approach your allergies or judgment in this way, you disarm the inner critic and take responsibility for discovering and evaluating yourself.
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