5 Powerful Truths To Silence Your Inner Critic And Fuel Your Creativity
“We are to think about, ponder, and park our minds on constructive thoughts, not destructive thoughts. Thoughts that build us up, not tear us down. Thoughts that breathe life into us, not suck life from us. Thoughts that lead to peace, not anxiety”. Lysa Terkeurst
I am a passionate creative. A girl who loves space to freely express herself and spread her wings. I played the piano when I was younger and I now find great joy in my love of writing. Whether you love music, graphic design, losing yourself for hours in a museum or curled up with a good book, there are countless ways for our creative souls to thrive in this beautiful world.
But, my inner free spirit also has a dark side. A side that can hold me back and paralyze me with fear and negative self talk. My perfectionist, inner critic who shows up like an un-welcomed house guest and her timing is always impeccable. She shows up during my most vulnerable moments and unpacks her bags making herself right at home to plague my thoughts.
Creatives especially can struggle with self-standard and perfectionism. Over achievers who fear failing and not living up to their or anyone else’s expectations can hinder growth and suck the life out of their creative fun loving nature. My inner critic loves to fuel negativity and she is very good at her job, selling me stories that derail my self worth like a well seasoned used car salesman:
• “You don’t have what it takes to be successful.”
• “Why would anyone listen to you?!”
• “There is nothing special about you.”
• “You don’t have anything of value to offer the world.”
• “You have made too many past mistakes.”
When I allow these pessimistic thoughts to make themselves at home, I am allowing them to threaten my individuality, control my life, my relationships and affect the purpose driven work I was divinely created for.
While I have not figured out how to kick my inner critic out permanently and continue to be a work in progress, I have learned over the years how to keep her on a very short leash. If you are struggling with your own negative thoughts and self doubts, you can tackle them head on with these self encouraging truths:
1. “I am me and that is my superpower”. Don’t be intimidated by your uniqueness. Being YOU is your greatest strength and allows you to stand out from everyone else. Embrace that for the blessing that it is. The world needs the gifts and talents that only you have. Always own your worth!
2. “Embrace the imperfections”. One of my favorite mantras is "It doesn’t have to be perfect to be wonderful". Perfection is an impossible expectation that will leave you unfilled and frustrated. When you embrace that you are beautifully incomplete, that is when the magic happens.
3. “Feel the fear and do it anyway”. Growth is not supposed to be comfortable. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. That is the raw reality but God has a plan for your life. You have to be willing to trust Him and walk boldly through it. Even when it pushes you out of our comfort zone.
4. “Its not about me”. When you take yourself out of the equation and focus on your why, your passions and your purpose you are reminded that the work you do serves a higher purpose than yourself. When your focus and energy are in the right place, it doesn’t leave much room for self hate.
5. “The gift of gratitude”. When you shift your thoughts to all that is going right in your life and on your blessings its easier to push out the negative. Where the mind flows, energy goes and gratitude is a powerful magnet for abundance, happiness and miracles.
In those moments when I can feel the doubt creeping in trying to steal my joy disrupt the peace in my life, I will write my thoughts and feelings down in a gratitude journal. Writing is a therapeutic way for me to deal with those emotions so I can release them and take back control of my thoughts and emotions.
I will leave you with these words to reflect upon: you don’t have to believe what your inner critic tells you. You can’t always keep those thoughts from showing up but you can learn to retrain your thoughts and put a stop to the self sabotage. You were gifted this one extraordinary, creative life full of promise and purpose. Go live it! xo
April Williams is the #CreativeMomista of two boys • Storyteller • Coffee Addict • Woman Warrior Of God • Texas Country Girl • Creative Expressive • Vintage soul passionate about inspiring MOMpreneurs to embrace their enough.