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Stop Being Too Hard on Yourself

Being too hard on yourself goes hand in hand with a low self-esteem. Learn to stop being too hard on yourself. Read this.

Stop being too hard on yourself because being too hard on yourself goes hand-in-hand with a low self-esteem. Signs of being too hard on yourself include excessive self-blame, self-criticism, negative self-judgement, self-punishment, and dwelling on your mistakes or flaws. Additionally, you may overlook or discount your positives. It is detrimental to your wellbeing and it’s important to stop it. Stop being too hard on yourself and build your self-esteem. 

How to Stop Being Too Hard on Yourself

To stop being too hard on yourself, it’s important to be reasonable and treat yourself with respect. Empower yourself to make your life better rather than wasting your energy beating yourself up.

  • Have realistic expectationsKnow that it’s okay to make mistakes because you’re human. Nobody’s perfect and life’s not perfect. You have to make mistakes to learn and grow, and life’s not always how you want it. Embrace your life’s journey and commit to learning and self-improvement. Focus your efforts on those things you can change.
  • Look for the lessons in everythingWhen something does go wrong, acknowledge the mistake, look for the lessons and stop beating yourself up over it. Some criticism can be justified at times, however, it’s important to keep it constructive and in perspective. Being too hard on yourself goes hand in hand with a low self-esteem. Learn to stop being too hard on yourself. Read this. Ask yourself what you’ve learned and what you can do differently next time. Think of stumbles as growth opportunities.
  • Challenge your negative inner criticYour thoughts and words matter, and negative thoughts distort your reality. There’s nothing to be gained from criticising yourself over and over again. Stop dwelling on your mistakes. It’s a waste of energy, it’s disempowering and it will keep you stuck. Challenge the negativity and focus your energy on moving forwards.
  • Focus on the positivesThere are always positives, however, you probably won’t see them when you’re too hard on yourself. You will have to make a conscious effort to see them. Ask yourself what you’ve done well, and the things that you like about yourself and your life. It might help to write them down, or use a journal.
  • Put things in perspectiveIs your life or mistake really as catastrophic as you think, and will it matter in, say, 10 years from now? It can help to talk to someone you trust.
  • Use affirmationsFor example “I am not perfect but I am learning and growing.” or “I did my best with what I knew at the time.”
  • Treat yourself as a best friendBe kind to yourself and love yourself as an imperfect person. Give yourself permission to try things out, to make mistakes and to learn and grow. Nurture yourself as a person and see your overall worth.

Being too hard on yourself keeps you from moving forwards, however, you can learn to stop it. It will take perseverance and effort but it’s well worth it. If you’re having trouble, or feeling persistently stuck, don’t be afraid to get the help you need. Stop being too hard on yourself, build self-esteem and create the life you want.

You can find Fay Agathangelou on FacebookGoogle+TwitterPinterest and her website.

10 thoughts on “Stop Being Too Hard on Yourself”

  1. I really appreciate how much you care, Emily!
    I have read your answers and makes my heart warm. It is so good when one sees engagement.

    I came to this site as I have issues with the same topic. This is something that I have a history with and no matter how many beautiful articles I read, only I can actually “do” the ‘letgo’. I think its an inner expectation that I need to cancel; the only obstacle is – there are parts of this characteristic that I dont WANT TO let go, as I see it lead me to success. But as Adam said, it would be better to take every day as it comes… its just so attractive to me to tick a large to-do list all the way to the bottom. Just in the meanwhile, I have now developped several stress-related conditions. But! I think I know what I need to do, I just need to find my balance and LEARN to prioritize. Sadly, I cannot be everybody’s darling, even though I would love to be.

    Thank you for writing the article! <3

  2. I am an introvert or I say I am an anti social type of person since childhood. I am happy to have music and book in my free time. I am facing a hard stage in my life working in a bank industry. I don’t know how to face my adjustment stage I really felt so hard in everyday I go to work. I feel so weak and I try to reach out but I cannot easily express myself and words. I feel so shy and I want to disappear..How would I rebuild myself I feel like quiting my job. I dont know how to handle myself in a crowd of sociality or social gatherings. I grow up having half empty about myself due to my mom’s death.How could I stand back up again. I believe I am being too hard in myself or am I in a depression stage?
    Really need help. I really want to have change and be the best version of myself a year later in my new job.

    1. Hi Lia, You are so brave for reaching out and I know you want a change. One of the things that helped me when I was in a state of depression and stuck in a job I was unhappy with was going to a meditation group near my house. Now, of course you don’t have to do this, there are other ways, but the reason I bring this up is it was a big enough group of people that no one would notice if I left early (or got anxious and left) and small enough to where I could talk to a few people there. I would also look into some meetings or groups (like on meetup.com or google in your area) for creative collaboration with other artists, group therapy for creatives or even online forums where you can connect with others. Also, your banking job isn’t your whole life and the good news is it’s giving you some structure, it wont be forever if you don’t want it to be, but it can be an anchor in your day so you can put your energy into finding more fulfillment in other areas. I hope this is helpful, do let me know. Also we will be doing a Facebook LIVE this Wednesday 11/8 at 8 pm answering questions live and helping others connect and heal. Join us and I wlll be happy to answer this in more detail. Take Good Care @GuidanceGirl Em

  3. I’ve been really hard on myself for about 7 years (since I graduated). Expecting myself to be a multi skilled professional on a high salary. Now I realise I am and I do not like the situation I am in. Always wanting and expecting more of myself whilst my friends are enjoying life day-by-day. The best advice I have been given is to take each day as it comes and try to stop making big plans for the future. Now I want a career change but my plan for the day is to spend an hour exploring possible ways to do this then i’ll try to stay in the present moment as much as possible.

  4. I too suffer from bipolar depression and it us very hard because the depression is the base and always there. Even reading your article was very hard to read. Is it tgat life is this hard or tgat my depression makes it too hard?

    1. It’s hard for all of us. Small steps in talking back to those negative thoughts can help. Let me know if you are able to challenge them just a little. It can be hard but I’m here to help!

      Take Good Care,


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