Would You Criticize This Baby?

Would you criticize this baby?

Would you complain that his eyes are too close together, or his nose too big? Would you say you hate his fingers or the color of his hair?

First – you better not, because that little punkin’ head is my adoooorable nephew, Noah.

Second – Maybe you would judge some stranger baby. So try this: Imagine a baby in your life, past or present. Child, niece, nephew, friend, whatever.

Remember seeing them for the first time. You know that overwhelming sense of love, adoration and awe? Remember that.

Imagine their features. Their precious little eyes, the ones you squeal over when they start to blink open. You run your finger along their cute little ears, let them wrap their strong, tiny fingers around one of yours. Every last bit of that baby is a precious gift. It’s a breathtaking miracle, no matter how weird its head is shaped or how long its toes are. You don’t even think about that.

But for some reason, as adults, we do. We over-analyze and criticize our beautiful, perfectly crafted selves.

For the most part, I’m over criticizing my looks. Hopefully you are too. It’s pointless and lame.

But every so often, at least for me, Negative Nancy pops her stupid little head in and has something mean to say. This last time, it was about my ears.

I was pulling my mass of crazy hair up into an elastic, and I noticed my ears that stick out just a bit. It doesn’t bother me much anymore, but as a teen I wanted them pinned back – seriously.

I tucked the stray tendrils behind my ears and was immediately met with criticism: “Eh, but your ears kinda stick out.” I started to remove the elastic when I stopped and thought about my sweet baby nephew and his little ears.

I would never, ever judge his ears, or want him to either. Every bit of him is precious.

As I thought of this, and visualized his tiny perfection, I remembered something:

I was that precious baby once.

We all were!

At one point, our family and friends fawned over us, cooed and giggled over every adorable little feature. At one point, my momma kissed my little ears and thought they were the most precious things she’d ever seen.

Remembering this, I left my hair up. I tucked the stray curls back, and I smiled. So what if my ears aren’t flat against my head? They’re actually pretty cool – they let me hear and now there are 4 gauge Buddha posts in the lobes! (Such a rebel – sorry mom and dad.)

I write this to say:

Anytime you’re about to get mean with your darling self, remember that you were once a precious little babe. The apple of yo momma’s eye. Your eyes were sparkling and the perfect distance apart and your ears were perfect. Remember the love and adoration of your family, and know that you don’t have to go there – the criticism is pointless. Maybe your butt is a billion times bigger, but remember, your momma loved that butt. And probably has a picture of it somewhere.

I hope you love the heck outta yourself. But for those moments that you don’t, however rare, remember this trick and your precious baby self. You’re still that precious, you just have to look through a more loving lens to see it.

Peace, love and a steaming cup of Zen,


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About Kaylee

I'm Kaylee. Through the last several years, I've embarked on a journey of awakening, of striving to live a Zen-inspired life. The changes have been remarkable! My goal is to help others along their own journey by sharing my insights and experiences.
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27 Responses to Would You Criticize This Baby?

  1. Tammy Renzi says:

    Wow, Kaylee. I too am so over criticizing my looks. Granted, I have worked hard on some areas over the last few years, but still I know I can find other “places to work on.” Still. The point you made is so important. We were that baby, and we need to go easy on that tiny girl or guy!

    P.S. – Noah is adorable!

  2. Bobbi Emel says:

    That IS a cute baby! Probably the cutest baby I’ve ever seen. Other than when my nieces and nephews were babies . . .

    Thanks for the reminder to be kind to our precious selves, Kaylee!
    Bobbi Emel recently posted..How to stop worryingMy Profile

  3. What an adorable baby. And just above the pic it says “Tiny budha guest post”. If I hadn’t have known what that was about, I’d have thought you were making an adorable joke or had a very special baby on your hands. He’s a cutie, Kaylee. I actually curled my left lip up as if to say, “What kind of family have you stuck me with?” Luckily it wasn’t all the time. But I still do it. And if it’s about me or s.o. else, I’ll make sure to imagine a cute li”l baby like your nephew. Thanks, dear.
    Lee Jenna Tyler recently posted..Fear of NaNoWriMo? Here are a few tips to calm the nerves.My Profile

  4. Mike says:

    Read this @0525A.M.
    What a great thought to start the day, thank you.
    I’m glad I joined this site.

    • Kaylee says:

      I’m glad you did too, Mike! =) Thanks for stopping by and commenting – happy to help you start your day off right.

      Btw…5:25a.m.?! Are you always up that early? As infrequently as I do it, I love being up super early…It’s such a tranquil, lovely time of day.
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  5. farouk says:

    i believe that mean people lack self confidence, they try to hurt others and make them feel bad about themselves just because they don’t feel good
    thanks for the post, we need to spread the word of positivity
    farouk recently posted..Why nice guys finish last and get dumpedMy Profile

    • Kaylee says:

      What about people who are mean to themselves? I think the same principle applies – it’s a lack of self confidence..or even further, self acceptance. Which is the point – we need to accept ourselves. There’s enough negativity out there, we don’t need to be bringing ourselves down too.

      Thanks for stopping by, Farouk.
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  6. cj says:

    Love this little trick! I sometimes take it a step further and imagine that I am a harmless little creature, like a newt. How could a newt do anything wrong? Then I combine this line of thinking with a lot of hard work. It’s a lot easier to forgive myself for everything when I know that I am trying my best!

    • Kaylee says:

      That’s a good idea, too! I’d probably pick something a little cuddlier…though on second thought, my little dog seems to be doing a lot wrong lately. Like chewing everything he shouldn’t… Sigh. Newt it is! Haha. Thanks for the comment. =)
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  7. Gary Korisko says:

    Congratulations, Aunt Kaylee!

    What a cute little guy … and a smart reminder to cut yourself some slack every now and then. I think it’s a good thing to have high expectations for yourself, but picking at all the little stuff is a different thing all together.


    • Kaylee says:

      Thank you!

      Holding yourself to a higher standard of living and being, yeah, definitely. But when it comes to our looks, I don’t think there’s any reason to criticize – it sure won’t change anything except our self-esteem.

      Anywho, glad you liked the reminder. Always good to see ya here, my friend.
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  8. Glori says:

    Argh.. sometimes I wish we had a baby in our lives. My brothers and I are all grown up and the baby nieces and nephews we do have lie far away.
    Yes, I’m guilty of criticizing my looks too. More often than I care to admit, in fact. I often deny that I don’t care about my looks, but I think I really do. I’m on the “fat” or chubby side so I’m self-conscious most of the time. But I like that no matter how conscious I get of myself, I never try to put down others for not having that conventional look. It’s sad, but from where I grew up, people are very into the whole “perfect physical appearance” thing. The idea that smil and small are the way to go is so ingrianed in the mind of most of the people I know that I sometimes feel that they’re all judging me. LOL
    It’s the reason why I prefer to read mostly blogs and other reading material from overseas rather than from the Philippines.
    I hope it’ll change soon though. :)
    Great read Kaylee and you have the cutest nephew ever. :)
    Glori recently posted..What Do Introverts Do for Fun?My Profile

    • Kaylee says:

      It’s cool that you don’t put down others for their looks…but don’t you deserve that same courtesy? Duh, easier said than done..I’m just sayin’.. You’re an awesome lady, Glori, and you deserve nothing but kindness!

      It’s funny, I think a lot of people assume that others are judging them (I know I do)…But really, if everyone is thinking that, who has time to judge others? Of course sometimes others judge us, but I think for the most part, it’s all in our heads. It’s a really hard thing to get over though – definitely somethin’ I’m still working on.

      Hope all is well, my friend! Good seeing you here =)
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  9. Chris Edgar says:

    Yes, I’ve definitely found that a useful thing to remind myself of — that, if I were looking of a picture of myself as a baby, there’s no way I could call myself “bad” or inadequate in that moment. Why, then, would I do that to myself in any other moments of my life? Have I become a “worse” person since then? It doesn’t make sense when I think about it from that perspective.
    Chris Edgar recently posted..Creativity and the Willingness to Be a “Wuss”My Profile

    • Kaylee says:

      Sure doesn’t. I mean technically, we COULD be “worse” than we were as a baby… But you could also look at it like this: We’re always babies, in a way. Sure, we mature, learn right from wrong, etc. But we’re always learning and growing, and we deserve gentleness and a certain amount of wiggle room. =)

      Thanks for sharing, Chris. I’m excited to check out your recent post – off I go!
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  10. Ciara Conlon says:

    Beautiful baby and beautiful auntie! Really sweet post, remember to show it to Noah when he is 16 so he knows how proud his aunt was. Thanks for the lovely reminder Kaylee
    Ciara Conlon recently posted..Do what you Love or Love what you do?My Profile

  11. Hiten says:

    Hi Kaylee,

    You’re nephew is real cute! :-)

    What a great post, my friend with amazing advice on loving ourselves. I was just smiling as I was reading and absorbing the truth of your words.

    You’re so right. As adults we forget we are already perfectly made. We judge, critisise and doubt ourselves. What a great way to remind ourselves that we need not do this. As you say, just remember that flawless baby we all were!
    Hiten recently posted..NLP Presuppositions Part 1My Profile

    • Kaylee says:

      Hey Hiten! Thanks! And he’s only gotten cuter. :D He smiles a lot more now, especially when you tickle his cheeks. I’m melting just thinking about him!

      Thanks for the compliments on the post, my friend. The thought of you smiling makes me smile. I’m glad it resonated with you. =)

      Hope all is well!
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  12. Amit Amin says:

    Yes, I would criticize that baby. He needs to be over here giving me a hug, instead of you!

    I practice love-kindness meditation, which is all about loving yourself. Dang those Buddhists, how come they never taught me this trick?

    Loving myself is a new concept – even now, 2 months after I’ve started the practice, still very tough. Now, whenever I’m having trouble (which is often!), I’ll give this a try. It worked just now; hopefully it will continue to work.

    How did you think of this brilliant idea?
    Amit Amin recently posted..The Science of Accomplishment – 30 Motivational Skills To Get Your New Year’s Resolution DoneMy Profile

    • Kaylee says:

      Haha, no hugs for you! He’s alllll mine. <3 He just giggled for the first time yesterday, apparently..Getting cuter everyday!

      Loving yourself is a pretty neat trick, right? I'm definitely still working on it - it's hard to love yourself when you feel like you're gonna bust outta your jeans, but we deserve love no matter what our thighs look like... Right? I mean...right?

      I hope the idea is still working for you, imagining yourself as a cute little babe. :) Though sometimes it's hard for me, I'll think, "I was sooo cute as a baby! What happened?" Haha..

      How'd I think of it? It just kinda came up...The precious miracle that is my nephew has made me more appreciative of just about everything. And more loving, too - even towards myself. But hey, thanks for calling it brilliant. :D And for stopping by!
      Kaylee recently posted..Would You Criticize This Baby?My Profile

  13. Evelyn Lim says:

    Hey Kaylee,

    I enjoyed reading your post tremendously. Your post certainly got me thinking. I will never criticize the looks of a baby. Yet, why do we go into self-criticism as adults? Somewhere along the way, we seem to have forgotten our basic nature. We develop the tendency to judge harshly.

    Your nephew sure looks cute!!

    Evelyn Lim recently posted..How to Heal Childhood Trauma QuicklyMy Profile

  14. Kim Thirion says:

    Awesome is awesome. Truth is we do it to ourselves, we do it to others, and it’s gotta stop. Gosh if only we recorded everything we said to ourselves. It wouldn’t be pretty!
    Kim Thirion recently posted..How to Love When It’s the Last Thing You Want to Do (Fight Back With Love Pt 2)My Profile

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