“In order to grow, I need to be hard on myself.” If you’re prone to surprising mini attacks of anxiety, agitation or fear (whether you’re good at hiding it from others or not), you may have an underlying belief something like this one.
You try to motivate yourself by making a mental list of the ways you fall short in your work/career, marriage, friendships, parenting, prayer life, volunteer service, or even self-care. But I’m wondering: How is that working for you?
Just this week during several calls with life coaching clients this topic popped up. Although I didn’t say so during the coaching calls (after all I’m committed to holding each coach-ee’s agenda!) I can identify. Definitely.
In his helpful book, This is Your Brain on Joy, Dr. Henslin shares how respected physician and author Dr. Amen often speaks of “automatic negative thoughts” or ANTs. These ANTs include what he calls “Guilt Beatings.”
It happens when we’re “being overrun by thoughts of ‘I should have done. . .’ ‘I’m bad because. . . ‘ ‘I mustdo better at. . .’ ‘I have to. . .’ Guilt is powerful at making us feel bad. It is a lousy motivator of behavior.”
STOMPING ON ANTS
Yet we can stomp on our shame-producing ANTs. Here’s Dr. Henslin’s suggestions:
Joan C. Webb
Writing, teaching, coaching to empower and set free.