This world can be very abusive. With so many struggles and obstacles, life can beat you down and leave you like a puddle on the floor. But even with all of the external struggles that we face on a daily basis, oftentimes our absolute worst enemy can be ourselves. We can allow internal dialogue to tell us things that we would literally slap anyone else for saying to or about us. We let our inner voice sew doubt and indecision into every move we try to make. We disrespect ourselves and our abilities by allowing negative thoughts to run through our minds. How many times have you said things to yourself like:
- I’m not good enough.
- I’m not smart/skilled enough.
- I’m not successful enough.
- I’m not attractive enough/ I’m ugly.
- I can’t.
- I don’t deserve good things.
- I’m not worthy.
- No one could/should love me.
- I’m a bad person.
We compare ourselves or our lives to those around us, to celebrities, to strangers we see on social media or as we go about our day and always find some reason to put ourselves on the short end of the stick, always lacking something, never winning out to the idea of what/who those other people are or how their lives must be. We don’t acknowledge that just as we put on a social mask and attempt to show the outside world our best selves, so too does everyone else. We don’t realize that the minute glimpses that we get to see of the lives of celebrities and strangers are purposely and masterfully orchestrated to show them in a good light. When trying to sell apples, you never put the bruised ones on the top of the barrel after all.
If someone else ever said any of the negative things listed above to you, you’d protest and argue, maybe even fight them. How dare someone else say those things to you?! So why then do we allow it from ourselves? Why do we not fight and protest just as hard when the words are coming from ourselves?
Negative self-talk can start at a very young age and often becomes an ingrained part of most of our lives well before we reach adulthood. Worse than habitual, negative self-talk can and most of the time does become automatic. We find ourselves saying negative things to ourselves without even thinking about it. It can strangle the life out of an idea and drain us of all inspiration and energy. If you’re anything like me, you’ve decided against trying something new or different that could make you happy simply because your inner voice raised so many doubts that it became too scary. Most of us have done it. We’ve chosen to stay in less than ideal relationships or careers, not to ask someone out on a date, or not to make a financial move because our mind is telling us to doubt the outcome or that we aren’t good enough in the first place.
We have to stop it! Each and every one of us deserves kindness from the rest of the world but most of all from ourselves!! We are worthy of love and kindness for no other reason than the fact that we are living, breathing beings. The external world presents enough challenges, we should never compound them by beating ourselves up internally.
Be gentle with yourselves!! Show yourself kindness! Stop berating your appearance or status. Stop degrading your achievements. You are made in the image and by the hands of the most powerful entity that has ever existed. The universe itself took the time to orchestrate time and space so that YOU would be born into this life. Everything about who you are is exactly as it is meant to be. Believe in your soul that you are worthy and replace those negative thoughts with affirmations of that fact.
“You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.“Desiderata by Max Erhmann