Critical Inner Voice

How to Be Confident

A Psychological Guide to Building More Self-Confidence Society offers us plenty of advice on how to be confident. “Just be yourself.” “Fake it til you make it.” “Dress for success.” Tips fly at us from every direction, from mothers to magazine covers. Some of this advice can be useful, but it can ultimately feel ineffective… Read more »

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How to Befriend Yourself: A Psychotherapeutic Approach to Living

In addition to training and experience, the ideal attitude of the therapist toward the client would best be described by the following adjectives: honest, direct, interested, inquisitive, warm, compassionate, non-judgmental, understanding and deeply feeling. In actuality, a person can learn to develop many of these same points of view towards him or herself. People can utilize… Read more »

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Why We See Ourselves Negatively

Most of us spend a lot of time thinking about ourselves. We question whether we fit with a romantic partner, analyze our interactions at work, and wonder over how we came across at everything from parties to parent-teacher conferences. On some level, most of us are always keeping ourselves in line. It’s safe to say… Read more »

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How to Reduce Self-Criticism and Make Real Change

My biggest problem with New Year’s resolutions is that, too often, they’re grounded in self-criticism. And by self-criticism, I do not mean a positive or realistic aspiration to be a better human being. What I’m referring to is a deep, dark core belief that we are just not good enough. For many of us, this… Read more »

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You Don’t Really Know Yourself

Examining the persistence of our negative identity My life’s work has focused on understanding resistance in psychotherapy and more specifically, on people’s fundamental resistance to the formation of a better, more positive image of themselves.  For the most part, they are unaware that their lives are controlled and regulated by negative images and attitudes toward… Read more »

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How to Tame Your Inner Critic

There are countless quotes, mantras and entire philosophies dedicated to telling us to find and follow our “inner voice.” This is a something I agree with wholeheartedly when it’s a matter of freeing ourselves from doubt and hurtful influences to discover who we really are. However, the inner voice can be tricky. Like pretty much… Read more »

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What’s Wrong with Needing to Be the Best

To strive for greatness is not an unworthy goal, but the desire to be great can be a slippery slope. While all of us have a right to live our lives in pursuit of our dreams, the pressure we now put on ourselves to be special or great can lead to insecurity, narcissism and an actual… Read more »

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Just Be Kind: The Only Relationship Advice You’ll Ever Need

You may already be rolling your eyes at the vast oversimplification of this title… and if you were to go back to read the many articles I’ve written on relationships, you’d know that I don’t think the secret to romantic success can be boiled down to one simple piece of advice. However, if people ask… Read more »

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“Nobody Likes Me:” Understanding Loneliness and Self-shame

There is perhaps no more painful thought in the world than that of “nobody likes me.” It’s an easy feeling to indulge and dwell on, a terrible go-to self-attack in low moments when we feel isolated, depressed, anxious or insecure. This feeling has almost no bearing in reality and no purpose other than to deeply… Read more »

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Mindfulness Can Quiet Down the A**Hole Voice in Our Heads

I was recently interviewing ABC News anchor Dan Harris, author of 10% Happier, for an upcoming online symposium on Uncovering Happiness. I really enjoyed spending time with him rapping about what happiness is really about and why mindfulness and compassion can help inspire it. But one of the things that really made me laugh was… Read more »

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