Last year, I read the book, Playing Big by Tara Mohr. It was an awakening journey in many ways, that I didn't even realize at the time. The most profound part of the book for me was the Inner Critic and Inner Mentor journaling exercises and meditations. I got so much out of the exercises that I started using them with my private clients and recently hosted a workshop centered around them.
When I read the book and did the journaling exercises last year I fell in love with my inner mentor (the person I saw in 20 years). She took me to a place of healing that I needed in that moment. However, as I wrote out a descriptive persona of my inner critic, well, let's just say, I hated the bitch! I used every ounce of writing skill I had to give life to this persona. I made her the most annoying person you'd ever could ever meet. She was a loud talker who had all the answers. She'd not only done everything but she'd done it better! I gave her a look and a sound which I will not divulge here, but I was very descriptive, even down to the look in her eyes. She was so critical of everything I did. I was either not doing enough or doing too much. I created this persona around every bully and trigger from my life. She's the person that told me I looked like I was hit by a MAC truck. She's the girls at cheerleading camp that would pull pranks on me sabotaging my food when I wasn't looking or hiding my stuff so I'd be late for practice. She's the narcissist that played so deep with my emotional wellbeing that I felt insane. Literally every bully wrapped up and filed neatly into one inner critic and she's always with me. When you have a vivid imagination you can get very creative! My disdain for her brought so much anger that unfortunately, I continued to manifest those people in human form.
The Big Shift
My perception began to shift as I started sharing this journaling exercise with others. Repeating it several times for myself in order to assist others through the process. Practice makes perfect they say. I began to see my inner critic in a new light and it all came to a beautiful awakening at the workshop a few months ago. Our group worked through the inner critic journaling exercise, released with some yoga and ended with the inner mentor meditation. At the end as we shared feedback, one of the gals said she was being guided to share her inner critic with us. Earlier, she wasn't going to share, but she said the Holy Spirit was guiding her. She let it come through. "My inner critic is a child and her name is _____" She began to pour through the detailed description with great compassion in her voice. As we listened, several of us began to cry. Tears rolled down our cheeks as we could all relate to this hurt little girl. As she finished telling us about her inner critic, she lifted her eyes from the page and said softly, "I love her." We were so moved I don't think anyone knew what to say. The Holy Spirit truly had come through with this lesson for all of us. LOVE!
I believe in my whole heart that she was guided to share that story to send me (and maybe others) a message from God. LOVE. As someone who tries to practice positivity daily, I immediately saw where this anger, shame and resentment focused around this inner critic was holding me back. I could feel it in my body. That moment will be one that I cherish and remember as another layer being removed in my Tuck the Fringe journey.
Can I Do It?
I created such a harsh image, could I truly come from a place of love? Or would it be superficial talk? There really was no choice in the question. It was an immediate shift. I started to role play with my inner critic. Having loving conversations with her, learning and speaking my assertiveness. Thanks for the feedback. I know you're really just trying to prevent me from disappointment, but I'm good. I got this. The shift continued and I noticed that when she would show up I had no hesitation to thank her and tell her she could take a rest. I'm good! Certain situations began to just take care of themselves. I didn't spend a ton of time anticipating the challenge, I just let things flow and kept coming back to a vibration of love. It worked in all areas of my life, even outside my inner critic. It felt amazing. Ironically it coincided with my vacation to Arizona. I knew in my mind I had wanted it to. I had a vision of releasing and letting go of another Tuck the Fringe layer in a place high above. That came on Cathedral Rock!
The Journey Continues
Everyday I have an opportunity to UN-Tuck another layer. The past several years have been an amazing experience of my highs and lows. It feels like I just received my degree and now I'm onto my Masters in Self-Discovery, where I still get to be the learner but the teacher as well! I love this journey!
If you are interested in going deeper into the study of your inner critic, I'd love to work with you. You can message me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Resources ~ Playing Big—Tara Mohr