Tuesday, 19 July 2016

On Self Criticism

A thought occured to me today: Why is it that I will happily tell myself "you look shit!" but if someone else said that to me I'd be like, "erm, EXcuse me?!" But, it's true, isn't it? I'm more than happy to criticise myself constantly - about my hair, my body, my decisions etc but I'd be mortified if someone else did it...

Thinking about it like this, makes me realise that I need to give myself a break. I've always been a 'glass half empty' girl (depressing, but true) which means I'll always look at the negative side of things. Along with this, comes my own criticism. 

Now, I know self criticism can be good sometimes - constructive, even. Reflecting back on things you could improve and perhaps have done better but I feel like it's necessary to remember to praise yourself, too. This is where I stumble.
I find it hard to praise myself - to say 'you go go glen coco', every now and again. Because I always feel like something could be still improved. 

I can remember finishing uni with a 2:1 and instead of being like woop woop, I was like "I coulda got a first." And that is basically me in a nutshell.

Now, I feel like my appearance is the thing I struggle with most - when it comes to self criticism. And it's bizarre really because some of the things I agonise over are things that literally can't be changed. Like, this is my face. No matter how much contour and shit I whack on, it's still gonna look like it does! And I kind of think the whole obsession with selfies, snapchats and Instagram is to blame for that one. At the end of the day, when you're constantly looking at yourself on self camera, it's hard 
not to scrutinize yourself.

The first thing I'll do if someone takes a photo of me is yank the camera out of their hands and zoom into my face - do my teeth look straight? Is my hair ok? Does my skin look flawless? Can you see the bump on my nose? Then, if it's visible, my body. Does my arm look fat? Why didn't I suck my belly in? IT'S AWFUL. But it's constant.

Like, why do I care? I'm not trying to impress anyone - other than myself, really. And I hate the thought of a whole younger generation of girls (or boys!) doing the same thing. Worrying about looking picture perfect at all times so they can snap the perfect selfie or be prepared if an off guard photo opportunity crops up.

I don't really know what the point of this post was, really. Just something to get off my chest - and something for, perhaps, you to think about it if it's something that concerns you. I just feel like I need to know my limits when it comes to self criticism. It's natural to want to strive for the best but, sometimes, it goes too far. We're only human, after all. We make mistakes and beating yourself up about it won't change what's already happened. Similarly, scrutinizing over the way you look is a bit silly. Thinking to yourself "oh my hair looks dry, maybe I should get it cut" is normal. But wanting to change every little about yourself, isn't. 

What do you think? Do you criticise yourself too often?

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