How to Combat the Inner Critic

My mind started up again.

You should have spent more time with her.  You should have been more intentional.  You should have….

The inner critic begins to criticize my choices for the day.  Depleted and frustrated, I give in to the should haves and start to critique myself.  My mind goes to the extreme with “I never…”  and “I always…” statements that are not true.  I wonder if I measure up.

Do you ever feel like you are not enough?

I think many of us struggle with these feelings especially as an Enneagram 1.  Our inner critic speaks loudly in our minds questioning everything we say and do.

Friend, if this describes you, I want to encourage you today from a fellow Enneagram 1, Holley Gerth.  We talk about her new book, *The Powerful Purpose of Introverts: Why the World Needs You to Be You, on my Depth Podcast this week.  I love what she shares about how to combat the inner critic. 

In her book, she has some great word comparisons that really helped me better understand negative thinking: rumination, self-criticism, and perfectionism.  She says, “Rumination is about our circumstances. Self-criticism is about our identity. Perfectionism is about our performance.”

She encourages us to exchange Rumination for Reflection. 

Rumination focuses on the negative whereas Reflection focuses on the positive.  Taking time to reflect is a valuable skill which will help us not get stuck on the hamster wheel of rehashing our day over and over.  Also, reflection connects us to ourselves and God whereas rumination is isolating.  Lastly, rumination leads to self-criticism, but reflection leads to self-awareness which is so important.  Self-awareness is the key to change!

These truths are so freeing and helpful to my enneagram 1 mind.  Hope they are encouraging your mind too. 

I love the wisdom she shares about perfectionism vs. growth.

“Perfectionism is all or nothing. Growth is little by little.

Perfectionism is all about the goal. Growth is more about the journey.

Perfectionism is about outward appearances. Growth is about what happens on the inside.

Perfectionism is about what we do. Growth is about who we’re becoming.”

Growing deeper in my faith and stronger in my relationships.  Friend, I want the same for you!

When your inner critic starts to ramp up, remind yourself that you are a work in progress.  You are becoming who God made you to be just like Philippians 1:6 says. “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion.”  Praying this gives you hope!

Love, Jodi

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God Never Wastes Our Hurts

I just stared at her picture.

Her beautiful profile in the sonogram photo matched her big brother’s ultrasound picture.  Seeing the family resemblance, I just could not take my eyes off her precious face.

Sadly, I never got to see her sweet face in person or hold her in my arms here on Earth.  She passed away before I ever got to meet her.

To parents who have lost a baby, I see you.  I am one of you.

Feeling devastated when the doctor could not find my baby’s heartbeat at 16 weeks pregnant, all my hope and dreams for my baby were gone in an instant. Can you relate?

I cried most of that summer as I found it hard to say goodbye before I even got to say hello.   Grieving the loss of our sweet Baby Grace was challenging and at time, even felt hopeless.

All that changed one year later when I received a phone call from a college friend.  She shared about a church friend that just walked through the heartbreaking loss I had the previous summer.  She wanted to know if I would talk to her and help her.

I said yes, not fully understanding how much healing would come from helping another hurting heart.

As I shared my story of Baby Grace, I offered this grieving mom comfort and hope. I reminded her that she was not alone.  I realized now that I would not have been able to help her in her grief without having walked those same painful steps one year before.  

That summer, God clearly showed me that He never wastes our hurts.

Friends, I still don’t fully understand the why behind our grief.  But what I do know is that my story of miscarriage helped another mom walking through her story of miscarriage.  My tears became my testimony.  He wants to do the same for you.

When you place your tears in God’s hands, He can use your heartbreak to bring hope to another hurting heart.

Hope!  It is such a powerful word. 

Tomorrow Oct. 15th is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.  In honor of this special day, the Depth Podcast is sharing stories of loss and hope this month on the podcast.  I encourage you to listen. Also, we are giving away a copy of Grieving the Child I Never Knew by Kathe Wunnenberg.

Link for Grieving the Child I Never Knew Book Giveaway

Join me in remembering all those who have walked through a pregnancy loss.  

Love, Jodi

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