Bob Baker's Artist Empowerment Blog

Are You Self-Aware or Self-Critical?

It's no secret that many artistic people are their own worst critics. That can be good or bad, depending on the way each person processes their self-assessment. On his excellent Occupational Adventure blog, Curt Rosengren ponders this very topic:

"Are you self-aware or self-critical? One can open the door to growth, improvement and understanding, while the other can weigh you down with an endless loop of negative thoughts."
Rosengren makes reference to an article by Skye Thomas called Taking Personal Stock. Then he continues:
"As this article describes it, honest self-awareness is key to growing and improving. Self-criticism, on the other hand, has the opposite effect. Self-criticism isn't about looking at reality and looking for ways to positively grow, it's looking at yourself, finding the flaws, and reinforcing the message, 'You're not good enough.'

"And so often, we mistake self-criticism for self-awareness.

"Next time you catch yourself picking apart what you did wrong, what you could have done better, what you need to do differently next time, etc., ask yourself, 'Is this coming from a perspective of awareness or criticism? Growth or self-loathing? What is my attitude as I take a look at these things?'"
And, as I'm sure you know, your attitude can make all the difference in the world!


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