Dear critical voice,
I know I don’t say it enough, so I wanted to publicly thank you today. I have misunderstood and judged you most of my life. I thought you were out to get me and always assumed that your intentions were evil. I experienced hurt and felt like I had to hustle to make you happy, but I was never perfect enough.
I realize now that is how you are made. You will never stop criticizing and pointing out concerns because that is who you are. You are a gift, and you have always been trying to help me, in your own way. I understand now that you only wanted to keep me safe, help me to fit in and be able to survive, and produce my best work. I really do appreciate that.
I also realize that you and I are not the same. You see, for a long time, I mistakenly thought your voice was the same as my own. Thanks to meditation, I have been able to see we are different and have concluded that there is nothing wrong with you, and there is nothing wrong with me.
Knowing this, I promise to no longer try to shut you out and down, and I also promise to give more voice to all the other sources of wisdom and gifts I have been given. I was never meant to listen to you alone. Your purpose is to be a part of the whole.
Thanks for all your help and please forgive me for all the ways I have judged you. It took learning to be compassionate with myself to discover I could also see you with compassionate eyes. I won’t ask so much of you anymore, and I am glad you are a part of the family.
Lee Ann Hilbrich, MA, LMFT, LPC, CDWF, RYT 200
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