We all have a tendency to be our own critic. We tend not to look at ourselves in a very appealing light when we compare ourselves to others. It is important to remind yourself every day why you stand out from the rest and how liking yourself is a very important quality people like to see in others.
You may have witnessed the success of others firsthand or people brag to you about how good they have it. Everyone has moments where we look down on ourselves. Someone may look like they have it easy but their world can be darker behind closed doors. Depression and anxiety can be an enemy that inhabits your mind that robs you of your self-confidence, makes you afraid to try anything new in fear it will not work out, or is not giving you enough credit for all of your accomplishments. If we let this inner voice affect us, then we will continue to hold ourselves back and people will not want to hang around someone who pities themselves all the time.
You know that you are your own worst enemy if you are quick to bully yourself. You could have made a mistake or said something out of context and are quick to call yourself a loser. You do this to yourself because you are afraid of what the other person has to say. To beat them to the punch, you will think of something cruel to say about yourself first. Doing this to yourself is not going to protect you from negative opinions. If you keep making harsh criticisms about yourself, you will start to believe them as the years go by.
You are also your own worst enemy if you harm your body. This can be when you are eating too much because you are too stressed to talk about your feelings or it can mean not eating anything because you feel like you do not deserve fulfilment. Punishing your body is only going to lead to long-term health problems down the road. Even cutting yourself to let the anger out will only lead to scars and a serious injury if you accidentally cut through a vein or an artery. The same goes for doing drugs as you are poisoning your body and continuing to do so despite the negative consequences because you no longer value your own life.
Another way you are your own worst enemy is when you identify with your negative thoughts. This is like when you say “I am sad” or “I am incompetent.” really, you should be saying “I am feeling sad” or “I am feeling incompetent.” Your feelings can change. By identifying with your negative thoughts, you are making it seem like what you are feeling is permanent and will never change. We all have the potential to switch from sad to happy. We can be losing sight of who we really are if we think that all we are is sad or incompetent. Being your own worst enemy can also mean that you will continue to settle for less whether it is picking the right career, the right spouse, your environment, your social circle, etc. You are blocking yourself from your unlimited potential because you do not think that you are good enough. All that will do to you is make you miss out on important opportunities that can shape your life.
In order to start becoming your own best friend, you need to start liking yourself. The first way to do that, is by identifying your negative thoughts. Write down on a piece of paper every negative thought that swims in your mind on a daily basis. Read these thoughts out loud to yourself and think about the terms you are using. For example, if you consider yourself a failure, ask yourself what your definition of failure really is and if it really applies to you. The real definition of failure is when you never try. If you are always trying but things are not working out the way you plan, you are not failing.
Start challenging these thoughts and ask yourself what is it about you that makes you think that you are a failure. Is it because you are not doing well in school? Is it because you do not have a lot of friends? Is it because you tend to be mean to a lot of people? Now make a separate list about why you are not a loser. Maybe, you do not have A’s in your classes but you are managing to pass. Maybe, you do not have a lot of friends but you do have a couple of close friends who are very nice to you. Maybe, if you are ever mean to other people, it can be because you got angry in the moment. But, it does not make you a mean person as we all have those moments when we feel angry at others.
Make a list of everything that is great about you as well as the good things that others have said about you. Keep this list somewhere you can always find it. Take the list of the negative thoughts and either throw it away, shred it, or burn it. By being your own best friend, you will wake up every morning with a positive outlook and the feeling like you can do anything.
Established in 1939, High Watch is the world’s first 12-Step treatment center. Every individual who walks through our doors joins a definitive culture of compassion, dignity, and respect from a genuinely caring staff dedicated to seeing the disease of addiction find remission. Providing proven therapeutic approaches and comprehensive 12-Step education, patients leave High Watch with the confidence to maintain abstinence and live a healthy, happy, sober life. Start your journey today by calling 860.927.3772.