Too Hard on Yourself? Time To Stop Self-Criticism

In the last few months, I have been saddened to witness clients “beating up on themselves” quite a bit. In our society, self-criticism and self-loathing have become commonplace; talking positively about oneself is often seen as boastful and narcissistic. Because of this, many people are more comfortable talking negatively than positively about themselves. It’s time to stop self-criticism.

Reinforcing Self-Criticism

Your subconscious is like a computer; whatever you put in is what you get out. Your subconscious doesn’t have the ability to judge or analyze your thoughts – it just moves in the direction of your most dominant thoughts. It does not assess your thoughts and decide that negative thoughts make you feel miserable and unhappy. It just does as it is told.

Therefore, the more we hear ourselves tell others about our shortcomings, the more we reinforce beliefs that we are flawed, broken, and unworthy. The outcome of such negative self-talk is harsh feelings of low self-esteem.

The same thing happens when we talk negatively to ourselves. Suppose you keep telling yourself that you are a failure for gaining weight, not getting enough sleep, drinking too much, etc. Your subconscious believes you and sets about continuing to allow you to overeat, be sleep-deprived, and drink too much. The subconscious mind reinforces that image of yourself and the beliefs that you fixate on.

The subconscious mind is always listening to what you think and say (or write online). Until now, you have been indulging your inner critic and allowing that part to take control. But there is a way to change that – and to do so quickly.

How Does Your Self-Talk Affect You?

Many of us are so used to self-criticism, we may not even realize they are doing it, and how it affects our self-esteem and daily lives. It’s important to ask yourself these questions:
Are you at peace and content?  
Can you acknowledge your positive traits and accomplishments? 
Will you ever allow yourself to feel good enough?

Experiment: Be Your Own Best Friend

If you answered “no” to any of these previous questions, I’d like for you to experiment with talking positively to yourself, like you would to a best friend.

Fortunately, the subconscious accepts your suggestions whether you believe them or not. If you have seen the skit on Saturday night live, with the guy looking in the mirror and saying, “I love myself”. This may feel corny and humorous to you;  it doesn’t matter if you laugh all through your positive self-talk. Just do it! 

If you find positive self-talk very challenging, or if you are very resistant to saying positive statements, you can preface your suggestions with, “I am willing to…”

For example, you can say to yourself, “I am willing to feel good enough.” And when a negative thought creeps in you could say, “Nobody is perfect, I am willing to accept my imperfections.”

Hopefully, after 1 week of correcting your negative self-talk, you will feel more comfortable speaking positively to yourself and will continue this experiment for the rest of your life.

Choose to Change Your Thoughts for the Better

I have seen wonderful transformations in myself and in the lives of clients, simply by becoming wise to the devastating effect of the inner critic and choosing to make a change.

Hypnosis Can Improve Negative Behaviors and Self-Esteem

If you find that you want to change your negative thoughts and behaviors but are having challenges doing so, consider hypnosis.

Through hypnosis, we can update the subconscious and conscious mind to accept that positive change is possible and convince you that you would feel better without this negative behavior. This is why – after only one hypnosis session – many people can quit smoking, gambling, etc., and other behaviors that cause low self-esteem.

If you are curious about how hypnosis can help with negative self-talk, self-esteem, and behaviors you’d like to change, I am happy to talk with you.  Please feel free to contact me at, or (904) 806-8840.

To your health and happiness,

Isobel McGrath Signature

Isobel McGrath is a licensed International Mental Health Counselor, Life Coach, and Certified Hypnotherapist located in St. Augustine, FL.

Isobel provides therapy, counseling, life coaching, and hypnosis in person at her St. Augustine Beach office, and through Telehealth. She is dedicated to providing exceptional, collaborative care, and truly cares about her clients and their well-being. 

For more information about St. Augustine Therapist Isobel McGrath, please visit:,, and