Have you ever paid attention to your inner voice? Do you find yourself negating your own abilities, minimizing your successes, thinking you can’t do something before you even try, even if it’s something you really want? I do!
Often the negative self-talk, or “inner critic,” may sound a lot like a critical parent or a judgy person from your past. This thinking can follow the path of distortions, such as catastrophizing, blaming, and self-pity. Basically, negative self-talk is any inner dialogue you have with yourself that may be limiting your ability to believe in yourself and your own abilities, and reach your potential.
It is any thought that diminishes you and your ability to make positive changes in your life or your confidence in your ability to do so. Like saying, I can’t do this, I am too dumb to get this, I am too old to try this, and so on. Because we say these things to ourselves without anyone being able to stop us, negative self-talk can be very damaging!
But you DO NOT have to talk to yourself this way!
My favorite way to change the negative self-talk is to ask myself if I would ever say something like that to my best friend, and how would that make her feel? And trust me, some of the shit I say to myself, I would never, ever, ever say to anyone, especially to a best friend! HELL NO!!! Then I think of the things that I would say to my best friend in the given situation. This is a great way to shift your self-talk in general – after all, shouldn’t we be our own best friends?
The other day I was reading the daily reflection from The Language of Letting Go and I stumbled on this little gem! I hope you like it as much as I do because seriously, it is time to stop picking on ourselves!
It is time to stop this nonsense of running around picking on ourselves.
We may have walked through much of our life apologizing for ourselves either directly or indirectly – feeling less valuable than others, believing that they know better than we do, and believing that somehow others are meant to be here and we are not.
We have a right to be here.
We have a right to be ourselves. We are here. There is a purpose, a reason, and an intention for our life. We do not have to apologize for being here or being who we are.
We are good enough, and deserving.
Others do not have our magic. We have our magic. It is in us.
It doesn’t matter what we’ve done in our past. We all have a past, woven with mistakes, successes, and learning experiences. We have a right to our past. It is ours. It has worked to shape and form us. As we progress on this journey, we shall see how each of our experiences will be turned around and used for good.
We have already spent too much time being ashamed, being apologetic, and doubting the beauty of ourselves. Be done with it. Let it go. It is an unnecessary burden. Others have rights, but so do we. We are neither less than nor more than. We are equal. We are who we are. That is whom we were created and intended to be.
That, my friends, is a wonderful gift.
– From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie
If you, or anyone you know, is struggling with Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)*, please check out the Sober Courage menu at the top of this page for an extensive list of support groups and recovery related articles.
*Problem drinking that becomes severe is given the medical diagnosis of “alcohol use disorder” or AUD. AUD is a chronic relapsing brain disease characterized by compulsive alcohol use, loss of control over alcohol intake, and a negative emotional state when not using (Ref: NIAAA).