Why Am I So Hard On Me?

We are too proud of our flaws as humans and not enough of our strengths.

We list our weaknesses with zest. What we need to work on. We get shy about what we are good at, what we can do.

We’re okay with excusing ourselves because we are human instead of empowering ourselves because we are human.

Oh, I have a sweet tooth. Oh, I have to work this job. That’s what everyone does? I am responsible for this. I can’t change. That’s how I am. That’s how we do things. That’s the way I see things. That’s the way I was raised. I took after my Uncle. It’s a family tick.

How about:

I can learn. I can grow. I can be curious. I can ask questions. I can evolve. I can improve. I can get better.

We are terrible taskmasters when we come to ourselves, and lesser friends.

We’ve been reprimanded in the past. The stuff we’ve internalized from that one time (or multiple times), our parents or people in authority uttered words that were probably untrue.

Can we easily identify why we do what we do? Can we figure out decades of personal psychology and compare it with human behavior to see where we fall on the scale and understand the whole picture?

I don’t know. I don’t think we need that much information to make good choices and live well.

But, if we looked at the mirror as at a friend we cared about, we could start to understand more.

We could acknowledge that we messed up, and then instead of spending time repeating this thought or act repeatedly, we take steps to learn and improve.

We can be gentler too.

You’re probably in the same boat. I am hard on myself — I expect a lot. Some patterns repeat enough times to show I have things address.

Although this is true, leaning too much on the “punishment” side is neither healthy nor sustainable. There are times when it’s necessary and even essential to be hard on oneself.

Just not as much as we think.

Kamga Tchassa is a Cameroonian Writer, Video Creator, and Podcast Producer. Find him on YouTube.

Cameroonian writer and video creator. Featured in LEVEL and P.S. I Love You. I write about building relationships and personal transformation.

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