The Right Ways To Kick A Self-Criticism Habit

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Although the concept of  “Innocent until proven guilty” is the law of the land, I find many women more than willing to judge—and convict– themselves of daily crimes of incompetence, inefficiency and general disorganization without ever hiring a defense counsel to speak on their behalf, much less consulting a jury of their peers.

I will take one of my typical days as a case in point. Even when I wake at 5 a.m., work on an article, take the dog to the park, lead a conference call, go to yoga, speak at a luncheon, coach a client and meet a friend for a drink, I will still come home and begin berating myself because I haven’t also managed to stay on top of my email, do the laundry and organize my speaking schedule.

And if I’m anywhere near tax, holiday or bikini season, forget it. I will also condemn myself for not alphabetizing my paperwork, buying my loved ones gifts to make their eyes light up or doubling down on whatever exercise is meant to ensure my six-pack abs, respectively.

It’s possible you’ve experienced these feelings.

If you’re one of the superwomen who also manage to commute to work, take your kids to sports practice and/or go on date night with your husband, I mentally—frankly—build an altar to you.

I can’t conceive of the opportunities for personal condemnation these would provide for me: missing my train, forgetting the operative piece of athletic equipment or neglecting to wax whatever part of my body has become the newest focus of society’s collective contempt.

That said, there are a few things I have slowly, painfully learned. OK, let’s not go crazy– a few things I’ve learned to work on…

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