What do you say (to yourself)?
How would you describe your inner voice? Is she a supportive personal cheerleader, one who lifts you up with positive words of encouragement, or is she constantly criticizing your every move? If yours is the former, consider yourself blessed.
Some of us (I’m one of ’em) have slightly less supportive inner voices. Mine’s a perfectionist, and I appreciate her chiming in when I’m working on a big project with lots of details to manage; other times, though, she can be a real pain in the @ss, pointing out my faults and reminding me of everything I do wrong: “God, you’re so dumb,” or “That was the worst possible choice you could have made,” or “Why even bother? You’re never going to get your crap together.”
It comes down to a question
For most of my life, I let my angry inner voice be herself. Then I read an article a few years ago about being mindful of the things we say to ourselves. There was a woman in the story who talked about having a critical inner voice like mine. She only realized how badly she’d been speaking to herself when her therapist asked, “Would you talk to your child the way you talk to yourself?”
Ouch. Ever since I read that article I’ve tried to keep the critical part of my inner voice in check. Truth be told, it’s not always easy, but now when I feel the urge to tear myself down, I think about that therapist’s question. I can either treat the child with kindness and patience, or sink my claws into her and beat her down. Most of the time, it works.
Words matter, even the ones we use when we’re talking to ourselves.
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,