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 Post subject: accepting yourself..flaws and all
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:39 pm 
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A friend of mine pointed out some things in my character that were true. It was those things about me that I hate. I guess what I'm saying is that I need to learn how to accept constructive criticism. There are certain things about me that I hate. Things that I am really ashamed of. But when someone points them out it makes me want to punish myself for being that way. I'll want to hurt myself because I'm not meeting my expectations. You know, I work so hard on myself that when people say things, I feel the urge to hurt myself for not being a better person.

This is so frustrating because I'm trying to build some sort of self esteem and then someone says something and it's like I'm back at square one. I need to be able to take what people say for what it is and not take my anger out on myself. It's not fair to myself to do that. I don't deserve the treatment I give myself. I would never talk to anyone the way I talk to myself and I would never harm anyone for their flaws.

I just get so mad at myself. I want to be a good person. I guess I hear what someone says and I feel so ashamed that I'm not different and then I'll want to do something like punch myself or anything that punishes me for not being better. I don't know how to deal with that anger. After my friend said that I thanked her, told her I would work on it and then, after she left, started freaking out.

Arggh.


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 Post subject: Re: accepting yourself..flaws and all
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:30 pm 
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First of all, I'm not sure it was "constructive" criticism if your friend simply pointed out your faults. Did she offer any suggestions for how to change? Did you ask for this criticism?

I see some twisted thinking when you say that when someone points out something negative about you, you're back at square one: labeling, jumping to conclusions, black and white thinking, to name a few. Also perfectionism.

No one is perfect. I'm sure you could list many positive qualities that you have. Your self-worth doesn't depend on how hard you work to be perfect, or being perfect. It just IS. I think you're being way to hard on yourself. Can you tell yourself what you'd tell someone else who told you what you posted here? You would be compassionate, right? You wouldn't think they were worthless and at square one, right? You've even said that you would never talk to anyone the way you talk to yourself. So, change the way you talk to yourself! You can start now, with some positive things about yourself.


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 Post subject: Re: accepting yourself..flaws and all
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 11:22 pm 
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Maybe just a perspective shift would help??

Can you not use that criticism that you received (and agreed with, btw, which suggests to me you take criticism just fine) and the accompanying emotional turmoil as fuel to achieve or just set a new goal?

As in....'I'm not where I want to be in x area yet, but if I choose to do y and z over time, I might get there'. In other words, we can't change our character just because we want to, IMO. We have to put into place very realistic, attainable goals that will help us in the long-run achieve the desired result. Just knowing I didn't want to do something I always did wasn't enough to help me change it--I had to have a plan.
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What I'm hearing from you is this:
*your friend offered an opinion on your character
*you agreed with friend, you 'hate' this aspect of your own character
*you are ashamed and angry with yourself for having character flaws, maybe something in particular
*you feel the desire to punish yourself for having flaws/ not meeting your own expectations (realistic expectations?)
*your new-found sense of self-esteem has been knocked down a peg or two by this
*you recognize that what you want to do with your anger is not 'fair' to you
*you want to be a 'good person' (is this your definition or what you have been taught/told by others?)
*you do not know how to appropriately deal with your anger towards yourself

Is that pretty much on-target?
____________________________________________
Okay, now I have some questions:
Will the punishment make the character flaw(s) go away/ will the punishment solve the issue at hand? Will it solve things long-term or just make you feel better in the here-and-now?

Is punishment towards yourself the way you have always (in the past) reacted to self-aimed anger? Is that working?

Is your self-esteem dependent on what this one friend thinks? Or, have you just now seen these things within yourself?

Do you want to work towards a long-term solution? Name 3 ways you can do this, if you can. Working the 5 steps here would be a great idea!

If you are angry--BE ANGRY. Shout, rage, punch a pillow--whatever, get it out. But then move on and please try to address the problem that made you angry in the first place, with clarity. It okay to feel any emotion, IMO. FEEL IT. Get it out. Then move on and try to re-tool the problem so that you don't end up with the same issue over and over.

You don't have to answer any of my questions on the board if you do not wish to, although I think you know I'm always happy to talk. I just don't want you to feel pressured and I thought the questions might help.

Best to you, as always, Ibcgal

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Temet Nosce-- The Oracle
"Pain is resistance to change."
--Ida Rolf

BRING IT ON!! -- personal mantra


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 Post subject: Re: accepting yourself..flaws and all
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 11:37 pm 
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Quote:
If you are angry--BE ANGRY. Shout, rage, punch a pillow--whatever, get it out. But then move on and please try to address the problem that made you angry in the first place, with clarity. It okay to feel any emotion, IMO. FEEL IT. Get it out. Then move on and try to re-tool the problem so that you don't end up with the same issue over and over.


I just realized that what I meant was--get it out HEALTHILY! I meant to say so in the first post. There are other ways of expressing that anger so that you do feel it, but you do not hurt yourself.

I am in no way advocating self-harm of any kind! Please be kind to yourself!!!! :D

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Temet Nosce-- The Oracle
"Pain is resistance to change."
--Ida Rolf

BRING IT ON!! -- personal mantra


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 Post subject: Re: accepting yourself..flaws and all
PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 4:09 pm 
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I don't know if it will help.

I have similar problems and I get very angry when I don't meet these incredibly high expectations of myself. Mostly because I don't really like who I am.

I've found that it doesn't matter right now (right now is operative words) but I do need to work toward getting to a place where I may not really like myself but I do aprove of the choices I'm making on a day to day basis.

Do you approve of the choices you make even if at times you don't like parts of yourself?

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