Affordable Counseling in Pasadena, CA
(626) 798-0915 | 867 E. Atchison Street, Pasadena, CA 91104

Deposing Our Inner Bullies

Deposing Our Inner Bullies

Deposing Our Inner Bullies

We live in a performance based culture where what we do and how well we do it are things we are always aware of. When things go wrong on our job or in our relationships, we can feel very vulnerable…and that is so often when our Inner Bullies come out to pummel us. While we all experience the ups and downs of life, these bullies can make the roller coaster of our inner experience much, much worse! So it is quite important that we know our Inner Bullies very well and have strategies in hand for when they show their ugly mugs.

Let me introduce you to some of the gang:

The Judge is on your case when you make a mistake to tell you how you have really screwed up. Likes to go over the same mistake again and again to really grind you into the ground.

The Comparer is always looking at what other people are doing and telling you how much worse you are doing than them. It is allied with the next bully to keep you on the treadmill of life.

The Pusher is on your case all the time to work harder and do better! It is very uneasy when you relax a little and is afraid you will fall behind in the rat race of life.

The Perfectionist is on your case to avoid any mistakes. It can obsess about details on a project that stymie you from moving forward. Nothing less than perfection satisfies it even on things that are not that important.

The Guilt Tripper tells you it is all your fault when anything goes wrong in your relationships. It likes to make you take responsibility even for things you have no control over.

The Rejecter is the worst of the lot. It can come out and just beat the crap out of you when you have fallen short on a task or been rejected by someone. It thrives on self loathing and self rejection which obviously lead to feeling really bad about yourself.

So what to do about these Inner Bullies?

Number One: Be aware of them. They tend to sneak up on you and start banging on you before you even realize it. Know their agenda really well and be on the look out for them.

Number Two: Disidentify with them. Often we totally believe what they are saying about us. Remind yourself that these are old, old voices from your past. They are not true now.

Number Three: Practice being grounded in the present. Practice Mindfulness and stay present with whatever you are doing.

Number Four: Paradoxically and against our natural tendencies, when these Bullies show up, practice self compassion. Talk kindly with yourself, especially the parts of you that feel vulnerable and unworthy when these mean voices are bugging you and trying to whip you into shape.

Number Five: Tell them forcefully to take a hike! You don’t need them any more. You might even put your hands up in front of you as you say inwardly, “No! No!” and send them off.

Robert Cornell

LMFT | Westminster Center

Sign up for our eNewsletter!

* = required field