From: Dear Me: A Collection of Letters Addressed to Various Aspects of My Self
© Dorothy Chiotti, Aimwell CreativeWorks 2013
Perhaps one of the most devious and undermining aspects that requires addressing is The Critical One.
In fact, it’s hardly worth addressing the other aspects and hoping they’ll heal without also taking to task this damaging menace.
July 5, 2013
Dear Critical One ~
That is a harsh name, isn’t it?
Is this why you are so unhappy?
It lends itself to your unforgiving and harsh assessment of The Creative One and The Guarded One your, dare I say, fairer sisters.
Are you bitter?
If so, why?
Who rained on your parade?
The Perfectionist? That cruel mistress of illusion?
Ah … this makes sense.
Really, you must learn to let her go. She is phoney ~ the weaver of unattainable lies; the spinner of unhappiness.
How can you even listen to her?
When you can let her go we shall re-name you to something more positive, softer like … not sure yet. We’ll need to think about that.
In the meantime, you have something to think about.
Perhaps, like your sister, The Panicked One, you should consider retiring.
You, like she, have exhausted yourself by serving as my “protector.” It’s time to release the manic need to control my interactions with life so as to keep me, supposedly and in your estimation, safe from, well, criticism, rejection and the like.
I can take care of my Self.
Please give this some serious thought. I have your, and my, best interests at heart and I can feel you need a permanent break.
I need a permanent break from you …
Pick an island. I’ll pay your one-way fare.
July 7, 2013
Dear Critical One,
You always seem to find a way to get in the way.
And I would love you away …
Surely you have exhausted your resources. Are you not yet spent in your need to nit pick everything I do, say, experience?
Your need to control these aspects of my life must surely end at some point. Aren’t you tired of having to be in control all the time?
Have you not yet learned to trust me?
If not, I wish you would.
In your effort to “protect” me from the criticism of others by undermining me first, you actually do more harm than good.
Let me enlighten you …
Every time you nit pick, second guess, question dismantle, dissect and just plain destroy my self-expression you destroy a part of me. You curtail my confidence, stifle my voice so I can barely hear myself never mind engage my thoughts, feelings and opinions with others.
While you maintain the stance of being helpful you’re actually being counter-productive.
Sometimes I think you must actually dislike me to be so cruel.
Why are you so cruel?
What did I ever do to you?
You don’t protect me. You prevent me.
And don’t harp on about the past. The past is just that ~ past. Gone. No longer relevant to who I am, or who you are today.
You need to adopt a new attitude ~ an attitude of acceptance. In fact, I would be happy to anoint you as The One Who Accepts if it would help you to see yourself differently. Wouldn’t you like to see yourself in a more positive light?
Please … relax your need to cling to the lies The Perfectionist has whispered so manipulatively into your ear.
She is not your friend.
She is our enemy.
The Perfectionist weaves her web of lies and ensnares the unsuspecting and you, dear Critical One, are just such a victim. The lies she tells you are the lies you unload on me … and I’m not taking it anymore!
So, wake up before it’s too late, before you are so deeply bound by The Perfectionist’s deception that there is no escape for either of us.
You don’t need to be a victim, and I don’t need to be victimized by you.
I can help you to be free. And the amazing thing is that once you are free I am too.
Kiss The Perfectionist goodbye and walk with me in the more supportive role of The One Who Accepts.
It’s never too late to let go of the damaging old ways and embrace new affirming ones.
You can trust me on this …
July 10, 2013
Dear Critical One ~
Perhaps you have noticed lately that I am making the conscious effort to release the need to be perfect.
I know you’ve noticed, actually, because I can always feel you nagging away at me to …
Fix it! Fix it! Fix it!!!
You’re always nagging at me about how I use my time, asking have I done enough; have I presented myself well enough? The sad thing for me (and disappointing for you) is nothing I ever do is enough.
You cast your critical eye over everything I do, and when you’re feeling particularly obnoxious about it you simply delete my efforts as if they never existed at all.
I would agree that learning to let go is a powerful tool for wellness, and I have adopted this rather well into my current way of being. Still, when you “let go” of something I have created, you annihilate it! There’s no loving it away. It’s an act of terror that leaves me feeling stunned and legless.
How many times have you killed the Creative One who, though she rises again like the indomitable Phoenix, must endure again and again your lust to satisfy the Perfectionist?
The Perfectionist kills authenticity.
The pursuit of something unattainable is exhausting, debilitating and hopeless. You must stop listening to the Perfectionist lest one day she stabs you in the back because YOU are not good enough.
Allow me to love you into a new way of being.
Be my ally. Embrace acceptance.
July 11, 1013
Dear Critical One ~
Why is it that you are the first one to greet me in the morning?
I awaken to a beautiful day after a night of broken sleep; I look at the clock and it’s later than I’d like, but instead of allowing me to be grateful for the fact I have the luxury of sleeping in if I need it (which evidently I do this week) you clime in “You should have been up two hours ago … “?
And that’s the problem ~ you’re unrelenting and “shoulding” me to death!
You “should” the smile right off my face.
“You should do it this way” or “you should have done it that way.”
Instead of allowing me to enjoy the process you question and nitpick everything I do. You make it almost impossible for me to be happy with anything I do or achieve.
And I say almost because things are changing.
Your power is becoming less potent though I feel it more acutely. In your desperation to hang on to whatever power as you suppose you have over me your methods become more grasping.
Would you really criticize me for spending some of my precious time cleaning up after my sick dog?
Criticize me because I am not spending it writing which, as you know is what I really want to do.
Don’t you know that when you do that you interfere with my right and ability to nurture what I love?
This is true of my writing also.
Every time you wholesale delete something I’ve created from awareness you make me feel as if my voice is of no importance and no one should hear it.
I know at some mislead level you’re trying to protect me, but what you need to understand, and I don’t know how many times I have to tell you this, is that you are actually strangling my ability to express myself … and it’s just not on!
Do you have any idea just how negative you are?
Have you not understood or, rather, observed how I have, during the past several years, divested myself of the negative voices around me? Those voices that fed you and funded all my insecurities?
They are gone.
You “should” be feeling weaker. And perhaps you are. Perhaps now you are hanging on for dear life, going down kicking and screaming.
It’s difficult for me to love you into submission. You’ve been so damaging and I see that I am still angry about it.
But you will submit, make no mistake. I’m standing up to you and your bullying ways. I know what’s good for me, and you are not among them.
Look inward, dear Critical One. What’s eating you that you feel the need to eat away at me?
To be continued …
©Dorothy Chiotti, Aimwell CreativeWorks 2013