What happens inside of us when we are self-critical? Where does that even begin? I’ve spent some time with this and for a couple of nights I would wake up around 2 or 3 and there would be this self-critical voice spinning around and around. The more it would spin, the more critical it would become.
What would happen for me was a contraction, a kind of collapse inside of myself. As I woke up a little more, to actually pay attention in a new way, I recognized that this voice had a flavor to it. It was, “How could you?” So, there was shame in there, and as I sat with that, I could hear underneath that “How could you?” that there was deep grief inside of myself.
This voice inside was listing all of the ways that I had failed as a mother. That’s really huge. My life’s dream when I was a little girl was to be a mother. So, it was rehashing all of those moments that I wanted...
Thinking back on my experience in life, I recognized a life lesson that I learned more recently that actually started way back when I was a younger girl. Let me start with a story.
It started when I got to go for a sleep-over, it was a slumber party, those were all the rage when I was younger. My best-friend had a whole bunch of us over together and one of the things we got to do, was to go on a hike in the woods. It was a big group of girls and we were having so much fun, and I felt comfortable with who I was.
As we were hiking, we were all excited, and I remember there was a new girl in school who had been invited too. We came upon a crossroad where we needed to decide to go one way or the other way. I recognize now, that I was a leader, because the girls all looked to me for which direction to go.
I said, “Let’s go this way!” And, this other girl said, “No! We’re not going to go that way; we are going to go this way.”