While I have been talking a lot about how I am holistically healing my body, I haven’t been sharing too much about how I am healing my mind. I have been working on the negative self talk that plays like a record in my head. It’s the little voice that doubts, worries, criticizes and over-thinks. I finally understand just how damaging these thoughts are and how much I am sabotaging myself.
Its taken a lot for me to actually recognize this and speak about it. I’ve done it most of my life without being aware that I’m actually doing it. Like most people it’s the little things, for example when you walk by a mirror and say,” Man I look like shit today!” We don’t think that is a form of self sabotage but it truly is.
Recognizing and accepting what I am really doing is a huge step. How do I change the negative talk and self doubt? It is a process for sure. Some of us are so used to doing this negative talk, it is automatic and we do not recognize that we are doing it. So in order to change, we must be super aware of how we talk to ourselves, and aware of the thoughts that are running through our minds. In the moment I notice the negative self talk, I stop myself and I give myself two positive comments. For every put down, I give myself two put ups.
Sometimes the best I can do is say to myself that I am doing the best I can, and that is ok. I do not need to place mountains of pressure on myself and expect superhuman feats at all times. Sometimes doing my best is more than good enough and I am learning to accept that.
Beyond changing my negative self talk in the moment, I have also been working on the real root of this criticism and self sabotage. I have discovered that the inner voice of bullshit is screaming “I’m unworthy of a healthy and happy life.” It is this belief of unworthiness that creates the negativity. For me, the root of this feeling stems from being sexually assaulted in my early teens. About 10 years after the assault, and about 17 years ago, I went to a hypnotherapist to deal with my emotional stress from the trauma. We locked the feelings and pain away where they couldn’t hurt me. I felt better after those sessions and confident that I could move forward in my life leaving the past in the past. For 17 years, those feelings, though buried deep in my subconscious have haunted me, yet I was unaware of it. Within the last year, some events in my life have brought everything back to the surface and I realized that I had never really dealt with the trauma and that in order to truly move forward, I needed to do so.
While I have worked diligently on the most obvious and outward emotional blocks that have come from such a traumatizing experience, I am just now realizing that this overflowing current of self doubt and unworthiness has been a persistent presence in my life. So how do you overcome a core feeling of unworthiness?
The first step is to identify and recognize that you believe you are unworthy. Next, is to work on changing that belief through your daily thoughts and actions. Stop the negative self talk, find gratitude for who you are, and focus on what you do have instead of what you don’t. I am working daily to build the belief in myself, it is not easy and some days are better than others.
Dave and I have worked to surround ourselves with people who truly value and appreciate us and who love us unconditionally. These healthy relationships help me to realize that I am worthy of love and happiness and not just expected to give without reciprocation. We have had to weed people out of our lives whose love and attention were conditional. With conditions comes a feeling of unworthiness, for if the condition is unmet, you are not worthy of their love or attention.
These changes are not easy and you may have to “fake it” until you truly start to believe. Tell yourself that you are worthy, that you deserve happiness, love and health. Interrupt negative self talk and replace it with kind words and compliments. If you wouldn’t say it to a friend, why are you saying it to yourself? The golden rule tells us to treat others as we would like to be treated, but unfortunately most of us treat others far better than we treat ourselves. Learn to love who you are, faults and all. Stop standing in your own way. I have come to realize that it isn’t who I am that holds me back, it’s who I think I am not.
All my love my Fabulous Fighters