Self-deprecation is a fancy way of saying that you make fun of yourself, yourself. It may range from making jobs at your expense or downplaying your achievements.
While it is a good practice to not take yourself too seriously, and if someone makes a joke, albeit one that is in good spirits and not rude, that you laugh rather than taking offense, constantly allowing yourself and hence others to crack jokes at your expense is not a good practice.
There are various reasons why you might indulge in self-deprecating thoughts, when alone and when in the company of others as well. Lack of self-confidence and having low self-esteem are at the forefront.
Similarly, there are some mental health disorders like depression that also lead to lack of self-worth. If self-deprecation is also followed with long periods despair, sadness, crying, guilt, and suicidal thoughts, you need to consult Best Psychiatrist in Lahore.
However, some people might engage in self-deprecation not because they undervalue themselves, but because they want to appear more modest and agreeable. They think of it a sign of humility, this also sets well with their audience as well.
Signs of self-deprecation
There are certain hallmarks of having unhealthy levels of self-deprecating attitude and talk. These include:
Inability to take a compliment
Since you are not convinced of your abilities, you therefore cannot take a compliment. You might then downplay your wins, think of others as insincere when they praise you and even crack jokes in response.
Minimizing your wins
Another sign of self-deprecation is that you tend to minimize your wins. Anything that you have achieved, you do not make a big deal out of it, despite the reality being otherwise. Even if you have put in a lot of work and effort into doing something, when someone lauds your effort, you tend to shrug it off.
Self-deprecation flows naturally
You tend to engage so much in self-deprecating thoughts and talk, that making remarks that put you down become a reflex for you. You do not even think over the implications of these words for yourself, but you simply let them flow.
You do this with everyone
Some people might think that they are indulging in self-deprecating talk to appear agreeable in front of others, but a sign that you need to reflect on your behavior is when you continue with this talk with yourself as well.
When you are all alone, there is no audience that you need to appease, so technically, you should not be indulging in these talks.
Remedying this behavior
If you can relate with the signs of unhealthy self-deprecation, then it is time that you take steps to remedy the situation. Some things to do include:
Be positive and kind
Negative thinking is one of the causes for self-deprecation. So, actively channel positive energy, especially with regards to yourself and your abilities. Also, practice being kinder to yourself, and acknowledge your wins.
Journaling is a great way to practice introspection. Every time you put yourself down, write the incident down. Highlight the causes, ponder over your emotions, and then overcome this destructive thinking pattern.
Let the praise come
When you get complimented, just graciously accept it. Do not nullify or negate it, but simply take it.
Write it down
At times, writing your wins helps. When you realize that you have much more wins than losses, you also understand that you are a worthy and talented individual.
Your self-deprecation might be rooted in more complex issues. It may be due to bullying, a form of defense mechanism, a consequence of early childhood trauma, coping strategy etc.
However, despite there being a logical reason to your habit, it still is harming you and your perception of self. Therefore, it may also be of benefit to seek help of a mental health expert like the Best Psychiatrist in Karachi.