How to Avoid the Vice of Criticism
Vice: a weakness of character or behavior; a bad habit.
Criticism: the expression of someone or something based on perceived faults or mistakes.
Fault: an unattractive or unsatisfactory feature especially in a piece of work or in a person’s character.
Mistake: an action or judgement which is misguided or wrong.
Judgement: an opinion or conclusion.
When a human being criticizes themselves or another person they put into motion a flood of neurochemicals that actually shrink the brain rendering themselves vulnerable to a negative thinking spiral.
How much of your negative behavior towards yourself and others is fueled by a mental focus on the above words? Which definition do you most identify with when it comes to your relationship with yourself? With others?
Write the word or words down with the definition from above that you recognize as frequenting your thought life.
Reflect on your previous week. Tune into a moment when you were caught in the vice of criticism (a weakness of character based upon the perceived faults or mistakes of another person OR yourself).
Biblically speaking, when did you pick up a stone to throw at another person or yourself? Write this moment down and reflect on how you felt.
Whenever you desire to see a sustainable change in your character it is essential to experience the dissatisfaction enough to want to commit to behaviors that will put in motion a positive shift in behavior.
D x V x F x L > R : Dannemiller’s Formula for Change. D: Dissatisfaction x V: Vision, x F: Forward Action Steps x L: Effective leadership and coaching must all be present to override R: Resistance to change in order to create positive sustainable change in your life.
Identify & Adjust:
Clarity of focus leads to accuracy of response.
As you identify your word or words that you experience in your life, for example perhaps you become aware that your set point for your inner self talk is criticism (focusing on your faults and mistakes), next shift your attention to the opposite of criticism: blessing; approval; praise; compliment; applause; admiration.
Do a word search and pull out the words that land well for you in your heart and write those words down.
The next time you catch yourself hurling internal insults at yourself, quickly SHIFT your script and use the words opposite of criticism.
For example, let’s say you facilitate a presentation and you see someone in the back yawning you immediately jump to internal criticism: “obviously my presentation is boring, I knew I should have avoided the traditional powerpoint and gone for more interactive fun activities…”
As quickly as you recognize the inner self criticism begin to re-write your script: “That person must have had a long day, it’s later in the afternoon if course they are tired, it’s nothing personal you are doing an awesome job collect your energy, what I have to share has worth and value, God is with me, I am blessed.”
Remember you get to write your screen play of inner dialogue, if the words do not support and encourage the main actors in your daily drama then re-write your script asap. As you identify and adjust quickly from criticism to compliment you will SHIFT your entire brain messaging system from negative to LIGHTS ON OPTIMISM.
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