The title of this post may be all you needed to hear. Listen up: it is doing you no good to beat yourself up. Take a look at my story and know that you are not alone in self-criticism.
I am my own worst critic. Most of the time, I’m not satisfied with myself. I wrestle between if I’m smart enough, pretty enough, hygienic enough, financially stable enough, prosperous enough…and ultimately, good enough. I compare myself to everyone. It’s a game. As long as I’m smarter than you, or prettier than you, or better with my finances with you, then I’m confident. But as long as there are people who are better than me at something, I beat myself up until I’m the best.
You wonder why I feel overwhelmed.
My anxiety is stemmed from the fact that I don’t feel confident in myself. I am constantly in fear of failure. I am constantly afraid that people will judge me. I am constantly in fear that whatever crack in my perfection someone notices will ruin our relationship forever.
I feel that way, because all of those things have happened to me. I have failed. I have been judged. I have been abandoned when all the plates I’ve been juggling fall to the ground in one sweep.
I have become my own worst critic so I can be better than others at criticizing myself.
No matter how good I get at anything, I’m never going to be better than Jesus. And do you know what Jesus says about me? That I’m worth dying for. That I’m enough. That God can use me to accomplish great things. Why would Jesus waste His time dying for me if I wasn’t good enough? Why would God create a plan that involved me if I wasn’t good enough?
God’s grace is bigger than our own worst criticism.
First John 3:20 says: “If our hearts condemn us, God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.” When we feel like we are not good enough, what God says is mightier than what we say about ourselves. He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows that we make mistakes all the time. He knows that we are not perfect. He knows we have been broken by our past. But He chooses not to look at our shortcomings but to edify us according to His word.
Do you choose to listen to the One who has never abandoned you (God), or the one who has left you out in the cold (the world)?
Make a conscious effort to stop beating yourself up, even with your panic attacks. I know it may be considered shameful to have a panic attack because you are not in control and honestly it’s embarrassing. But when panic strikes, think about what God says about you. If you don’t know what God says about you, spend some time reading the Bible, which is filled with God’s promises for His people. By His people, I mean those who have fully trusted in Christ as Savior.
Here are some Bible verses compiled by Neil Anderson that affirm who we are in Christ. Read them out loud and let God transform your way of thinking. Accept His grace into your life instead of the world’s condemnation.
Photo by Averie Woodard on Unsplash