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Posted 08/19/2022 in Category 1 by DAVID CHARLTON

How to Deal with Self-Criticism using Self Compassion – Final Part

This episode is the final part of a three-part series where I’ve tried to help people recognise that to develop Mental Toughness it is not simply about “being tough” or “egotistical” there is more to it than that.   The series of episodes have looked at self-criticism, which we can all find difficult at different times and in different situations, from a variety of angles.  I’ve shared sporting case studies, and why and how having a self-compassionate approach can be helpful.  

This time we look at competitiveness and I highlight when things go wrong how hard it is for some people and how they internalise losses.  Also featured is an exercise to help you in these circumstances – “How you would treat a friend” which you can apply to yourself so you can move on from defeats in a different manner and sleep a little better that evening!

Key Learning Points

  • Competitiveness is a strong desire to be more successful than others.
  • People who are competitive dream about winning, they love the feelings of beating rivals.  
  • Real competitors thrive off pressure in clutch situations.  They love the challenge too, for example taking the decisive penalty kick to win a tournament, they’ll out their hand up.
  • The downsides of being extremely competitive include jealousy of others, very high emotions in sport and corresponding outbursts.
  • A large degree of self-criticism can also be a common behaviour of “the serious competitor” which can work for and against them.
  • To counter the self-criticism, self-compassion is a very helpful approach and can help people relax more quickly in emotional circumstances. 
  • Kristin Neff, who has done extensive research in this area suggests that self-compassion consists of three main elements: kindness, a sense of common humanity, and mindfulness. 
  • Research has shown that most people are kinder to others than they are to themselves. Throw in events or situations that are beyond our control, such as sporting matches and competition – the same is true.  
  • Then exercise “How you would treat a friend” is a helpful reminder to help you be kinder to yourself, to see things from a fresh perspective as well as helping you look in the mirror and be honest with yourself.  

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Relevant Podcast Episodes

Ep129: David Charlton – How to Deal with Self-Criticism using Self Compassion – PT1

Ep130 David Charlton – How to Deal with Self-Criticism using Self Compassion – PT2

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