Good morning!

I woke up with lots of energy today, so I decided to make bagels. Right now, they are cooling, so I’ll let you know later how they turned out. You may remember that I’m working on learning to cook, so this is another step. It’s all part of trying to live a healthier life–getting rid of preservatives in my food!

But you aren’t reading this to talk about preservatives. We’re working on a healthier you, we’re working on active whole-body health, including physical health, social health, and emotional health.

Recently we started looking at ways you might be keeping yourself stuck in habits that make you miserable, and one of those is harshly judging yourself. Judging yourself is different from taking responsibility or being honest with yourself about strengths and weaknesses. Judging yourself is about saying harsh things to yourself.

The title to today’s post is a bit misleading. It’s really unlikely that you can just go from judging yourself to not judging yourself. Instead, start with being aware of judging. Maybe you judge yourself in one particular area, like your appearance or how you talk with people.

!. Practice noticing when you judge yourself.
2. Think of ways you can replace the harsh judgments with a neutral statement
3. Every time the harsh statement comes up, replace it with the more neutral statement.
4. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

So the bagels are okay, but not great. A harsh self-judgment might be, “I’ll never learn to cook,” or, “I hate myself; I mess everything up.” What could you replace the harsh self-judgments with? Maybe, “What did I learn?” You might say, “Learning anything new takes practice.” You could even laugh about it, “Well, opening a bagel shop is not in my future anyway.”

How do you judge yourself brutally or unkindly? How can you replace those judgments?

Live a skill-full life. By Karyn Hall, Ph.D., May 27, 2020

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