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Silence The Inner Critic August 22, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Life Balance, Meditation, Mindfulness.
44 comments

In meditation practice, as the observer of our thoughts,  we begin to see all the “crap” (technical tantric term) running through our brains.

That energy could be better utilized in other, more  creative, endeavors.

For example, many of us have an inner critic ~ a voice that reminds us that we are not good enough, or smart enough, to do whatever it is we want to do at that moment.

Sometimes we aren’t even aware that the inner critic has taken up residence in our brain.  We have so much other chatter going on up there, that we don’t hear our critic chipping away at our self-esteem in the background.

My inner critic used to visit me as soon as I got in bed at night.  Instead of giving me a pat on the back for the 99 things that I did “right” that day, my inner critic would launch into a pedantic stream of rhetoric about the one thing that I did not do well ~ using harsh words which would have reduced me to tears if uttered by anyone else on the planet.

Instead of telling him to shut up, I gave my inner critic free rein . . . hanging on his every word, and absorbing his poisonous ranting and raving, until I fell into the blissful oblivion of sleep.

Once I started meditating, I became more aware of my thoughts, including those offered up by my inner critic.

As I observed thoughts arising during meditation, I realized how negative many of them were ~ especially those espoused by my inner critic.

Pressing the PAUSE button for 20-30 minutes a day while meditating felt wonderful.

Over time, through the continued practice of meditation, I began to see my mind as the television set, my thoughts as the various programs being broadcast over the airways, and me . . . as the silent observer in control of both.

In short, I held the remote.  Talk about power!

As we become more aware of the chatter in our heads, and tune in to that chatter, we see clearly the dramas created by our thoughts, and we hear our inner critic spouting lies and half-truths.

Once we get the picture, we begin to reclaim control over our mind and  thoughts by asking a simple question: will watching this show (often a stale re-run), or thinking this thought, bring me happiness? 

If not, we use our remotes to change the channel.

As easily as maneuvering through a DVD, we observe what’s on the screen, we decide whether it’s in our best interest to continue watching, and then we act by pressing the relevant button:

PAUSE . . . FAST FORWARD . . . REWIND . . . MUTE . . .

And even . . . EJECT!

Learn to manipulate your thoughts, or they will manipulate you.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related post:  Teralyn Rose Pilgram on Dealing with the Evil Editor (Becky Levine’s Blog) * How To Eject Your Inner Critic