A mental health topic on Selene’s Shadow Realm (again)? Did you post on the wrong site? This blog is about your mods and projects. Why don’t you post it on Modding on the Spectrum where these subjects belong?….
What do you think after reading those lines? That I’m not sane? Sure, I have some more or less serious problems. And one of them is my inner critic. The first paragraph of the article shows you how his monologue can look like.
Before I go into more detail about my inner critic and my fears that are connected to him, let me explain why I write this kind of subject here on my blog instead of my forum Modding on the Spectrum. You may have noticed that I usually post something on Selene’s Shadow Realm when I release a new mod or start a new mod project. It can take months until I write something new. I have a lot to say but I worry how well my other subjects are received by my readers. The work on Modding on the Spectrum made me a bit more open. I want to be more active on Selene’s Shadow Realm and finally talk about things I’ve been silent about before. The focus of my mental health posts in the forum is giving advice. Regarding my blog, I just want to talk about the stuff without giving a direct advice. It’s more like a diary. The articles that I will publish between my mods and projects articles will not only be about mental health. I haven’t quite decided what the other subjects could be.
The inner critic. I probably possess him since my childhood. My memory is odd. I can forget a lot of things. Some things stay in my memory forever. My brain is very selective about what stays in my memory. And I tend to mix things up that happened in the past. What I remember are the experiences of bullying and ostracism in school and my two apprenticeships (especially the second apprenticeship). I took these to heart which let the inner critic grow. Self-doubts and low self-esteem were the result. But, over time, and after countless conversations about my problems with persons I trust, I could improve my self-esteem. The self-doubts remained thanks to the inner critic.
I have the fear of failure. I need a lot of time until I pursue important matters (in the past: finding a job, today: finding a bigger and more silent flat). The inner critic always sees the things that can go wrong. He says for example that the new flat could be worse than the current one. But what was the trigger for this fear? I assume it has something to do with the fact that I failed my high school diploma (I got the advanced technical college certificate instead) and my second apprenticeship, that I lost a job once (not my current one).
I have the fear of rejection. I need a lot of time until I can trust people due to my experiences of bullying and ostracism. The inner critic reminds me of my victimhood. When I’m part of a new group, It takes some time to break the ice. So I usually stay quiet at the beginning because I don’t want to offend people if I say my opinion. As soon as I have the feeling that nothing bad comes from the people in this group, I’m more open.
I think the inner critic is a mechanism that I developed to prevent further bad experiences. But too often he holds me back to live a fulfilling life, to unlock my true potential. With every good experience he becomes smaller but bad ones make him bigger again. He is not that big and strong he used to be in the time before I finally got my current job. I hold this job for some years now and this changed a lot in my life and how I see myself. I still visit my psychiatrist every couple of months and that’s a good thing. He helps me to live with my depressive phases and the other conditions that will probably be always a part of me. That’s ok.
2 thoughts on “Fear or the inner critic”
I tend to picture the old cartoon troop of the demon on one shoulder and the angel on the other when I try to describe “my” inner critic, because for me it serves as both. In a universe where we’re all constantly bombarded with choices to make which are at best questionable; I find it sometimes works best when I let both “demons” argue, and then choose which one I support.
I’m a tool gatherer/collector/whore. My inner demons have become another tool I can use. I don’t fear them, the trick is knowing when to silence the internal discussion and make a choice. Having aspergers may leave me on the fringes of the spectrum. But the constant internal ruminations are just as debilitating.
Developing the ability to silence the arguments and make a choice is not easy, I’m still dealing with it. And even after making the choice the voices try to come back and haunt my decisions. That’s where other factors come into play. The most important factor for me is my “heart” I’ve always tried to “do the right thing” and with that as a guide it becomes easier to silence the constant self doubts that fuel the inner critic.
I don’t have any answers Selene, but I’ve grown quite comfortable with my own conscience, and allowing my nature to develop towards always trying to help, and first doing no harm … Etc. (I could inject lots of fun cliche’s here) Allows me a certain comfort in choosing a path in an uncertain world.
Just my opinions… I’m as nuts as you are LOL
The troop with the angel and the demon on the shoulder reminds me of my occasional soliloquies. No, I don’t play two roles when I’m doing this. I just try to look at the matter from different angles. And sometimes I write a pros and cons list to visualize my thoughts about the matter.