When people second-guess themselves or express doubt in their abilities or worth, we always say, “Stop being so hard on yourself.” But maybe we should say, “Stop being so easy on yourself.”

When we belittle and berate ourselves, it’s suddenly a lot easier to justify quitting a project, dumping a relationship or dropping out of life. 

When I believe I am not smart enough or good enough for anything in the world, then I should just quit now while I’m ahead and stay home. Believing we are small and insignificant is actually a copout. Our feelings of worthlessness are mixed with a dose of laziness and a large helping of fear of failure.

Looks hard but it’s really just lazy. [Click photo for credit.]
You want to really be hard on yourself? Ask yourself to do the the thing you’ve been afraid to do. The big, pipe dream sitting there in your gut. As Steven Pressfield might say, Sit down and write the book or compose the song or fill out the small business application or make the dreaded phone call. Resist the Resistance.

You want to go easy on yourself? Then just keep doing what you’re doing.

Keep believing good things will never come to you, that you’re not worth anything or that you’re not ever going to be able to succeed. And you’ll be right. Unfulfilled and miserable, but so right.

I’m sorry you don’t feel you’re worth much, but after years of mulling over that lie, it’s time to change your thinking. You and I both know it’s not true, and it’s only gotten you more of a life you’re not proud of.

So what are you going to do about it?

{Want to live on purpose with me? Get a free copy of my book, Dream or Die, at its 2014 release by subscribing here, or follow me on Twitter or Facebook.}

4 thoughts on “Why being hard on yourself is actually going easy on yourself

  1. Nailed it. May I add that words like always, never, should, and shouldn’t, are antecedents to thoughts leading to self-pity. And, drives for superiority and perfection, move forward under the command of satan his-bad-self. As a child of the 60’s I say, right-on! But most certainly, write on.


    1. Thanks, Doug. Great additions and I totally agree. I think your suggestions could be their own post. Self-pity and perfection are two other ways we sabotage ourselves for sure!


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