• Crystal

The story of my inner critic

This is the story of my inner critic. It’s been the harsh driver of my education and career up til now. I share this to show you that the inner critic is learnt which means it can be unlearnt.

“Stop crying.” Hot tears fall on the page, one after the other. I can’t stop. I see her frown, her jaw tightening. She is frustrated and angry. I want to get away but she won’t let me until I get it right.

I get it. She needs to know that moving to England was the right choice by making sure I have a different future to her present. Get an education, get a job, get married, get a house, have kids. This is the path she expects me to follow. So here we are at step 1, get an education. First I need to pass the exam to get into the right school.

It’s no fun learning together. I can feel her frustration because she doesn’t understand which means she can’t teach me when I get it wrong. Step 1 is not going well. That means the rest of the path is fckd. How will I get a decent job? Will I be able to support myself? What will I become? Now an adult, I imagine these were the questions racing through her mind because these are the questions I ask myself.

The weight of her expectations are heavy on 10 year old me. But I carry them with me anyway. Her expectations are now my inner critic. A constant reminder that I can’t stop, I can’t fail, and I can’t stray off the path.

But now I know there is a better way.

Process over results.

Pull over push.

Play over perfection.

Compassion over criticism.

My path over hers.

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