even members of congress have gremlins

by Joanna on July 30, 2013

A Mindful Nation

We all have gremlins, inner critics that tell us we’re not good enough. When I read the passage below in Congressman Tim Ryan’s book A Mindful Nation, I thought “he’s describing his gremlin.”

“The thoughts continued to be judgmental and critical. In fact, they were mean. It became apparent to me that such thoughts tend to recur. They can be like background noise. I had just never noticed them. As they revealed themselves to me, I realized I could be terribly hard on myself. I could judge myself with a level of cruelty I wouldn’t inflict on my worst enemy. I could get stuck in a thought-loop of questioning past decisions or regretting remarks I made or lines in speeches I’d given. It was repeated pressure, always self-imposed. I thought I was kind, compassionate, and considerate. It turns out that was true only if I was dealing with someone other than myself. But toward myself I could be cruel, unforgiving, dissatisfied, manipulative, mean-spirited, and needlessly judgmental. I started to think about my new nephew and how I would never treat him this way. Toward everyone else I was the nice guy; to myself I was the town asshole.” ~Tim Ryan, A Mindful Nation 

Yep, that’s the gremlin in a nutshell.

(If you haven’t met my gremlin Janice, you can read about her here.)

Yesterday’s post went up late in the day, so if you missed it, read it here.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: