Inner Critic Bothering You?
Try These Helpful Suggestions!

by Sondra Kornblatt

Sit down, pour a cup of tea, and have a conversation with your Inner Critic.

Your Inner Critic is that inner alarm that rings–or yells or whines–every time you step out of its shifting safety zone. It zaps your energy with twisted logic, persistent arguments, inner sabotage,a option overload, and dread of fear and disapproval.

Needless to say, this puts a damper on the flow of your creativity.

Which doesn’t mean you get rid of this part of you. It is useful when it points out problems to correct–later on in the germination of your ideas. As your idea takes flight, though, you need to put the Critic aside until you’re ready to hear its view.

As a writer, teacher, and promoter of my materials, I’ve learned few tricks that helped me balance the Inner Critic. Whenever I appear on TV, I first push it out of my body and tell it to stay at home until later that night when I agree to ask for its opinion. I am much more relaxed on TV while I don’t have to fight that inner voice. The Inner Critic has given me useful feedback when I’m ready to hear it–at the end, for next time. Here are some ways to free yourself of your Inner Critic’s hold–right now.

Change Your Mind

Remind yourself of how far you’ve come. Remember that the Critic is only thoughts, not reality.

Focus on Your Body

See if the Critic “lives” in a certain part of your body–maybe your shoulders. Do some yoga or counter movements to loosen that hold.

Push the Critic out of your body. Feel yourself without that energy inside you.

Tell the Critic to leave the room, stay in the car, go to the coffee shop. You’ll check in with it later.

Reduce Emotional Charge

Notice the sensations of emotional intensity in your body. Stay with those sensations as you notice any sounds or images that go with them. This helps disconnect thoughts spurring on feelings.

Present Moment

Be grateful for the present moment.

Notice your body in the present moment. Feel your skin: the air, clothing, gravity and sensations. (Thanks to Rick Carson of Taming Your Gremlin for that idea.)


Give your Critic a funny name or appearance–and laugh at it.

Change Your Habits

Write long-hand for 20 minutes. The computer screen brings out the evil editor.

Draw a picture.

While your Critic won’t disappear, you can change your relationship to it. Instead of being an inescapable wall, you learn to see your Critic as boulders (rocks? stones?) in a field. You can move around on climb over them! Your true self finds its flow.

Copyright, Sondra Kornblatt 2003-2006

Sondra Kornblatt is a freelance writer on wellness and sleep. She developed Restful Insomnia, a program that helps insomniacs renew during sleepless nights and greet the morning refreshed. Get a free e-book on How to Renew at Night when you sign up for the newsletter at her website, Restful Insomnia.