If you loved the movie Bambi as much as I did when I was little, then you’ll recognize this, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” Thumper’s momma knew what was up, speaking negatively hurts those around us. But speaking negatively to ourselves only hurts us.
While I may have taken Thumper’s momma’s advice to not say hurtful things to others, applying that rule to how I speak to myself is much harder. And there is no one else around to point it out to me, when it is all happening inside my head.
I grew up with someone in my life who constantly spoke negatively about themselves out loud. As a child, I didn’t quiet understand because they said words about themselves I wasn’t even allowed to say. In essence this person was their own verbal abuser.
When this person verbally praised me, it never felt authentic. If you can’t say anything nice about yourself, how am I to have confidence in the words you are speaking about me? Do you talk about me the way you talk to yourself?
I don’t believe it is Christ-like to talk yourself down. Christ is our light & our life, He wouldn’t tell us we were dumb or stupid. Instead we’re called to lift one another up, with words and with works.
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up…1 Thessalonians 5:11
To make a long story short, due to moving, jobs, and finacial reasons we’ve never bought a home. We’re in our mid-thirties renting an apartment, and this feels like a failure in my life. I should have my life together by now right?
The negative talk I tell myself most often is:
1) “I’m not successful”
2) “I’ve let people down because I <insert reason>”
What proves the first statement wrong is I have been married to my husband for nearly 13 years, our marriage and relationship has lasted longer than many of our friends.
We are successful. While most people, including myself, relate success to financial stability and freedom, I have a hard time remembering being happy is also a success in this world.
Instead of “I’m not successful” I say “I am proud of myself and all I have accomplished” because I’ve done alot. I’ve been given awesome opportunities in my life to try new things and live in amazing places. I began this blog with no expectation and is now a huge source of pride.
What makes the second statement wrong is that I am letting myself down by comparing my life to other people.
No, I don’t own a home but maybe that isn’t part of the plan? No, I don’t have a full time job with benefits, but I am building my passion by writing and sharing with my audience, selling fair trade made goods that empower women, and styling clients with stylish pieces that make them feel confident and strong at home and at work.
And instead of “I’ve let people down…” I say “I am creating my life exactly as I want it.” I am creating my own opportunities to own my business & make an impact in the world.
A little over a year ago, I bought a set of mindset cards from Abundant Affirmations, it was a suggestion from my husband’s therapist for him. But really, I love them and use them more than he does.
How we speak to ourselves, our loved ones, and our neighbors matters on a very deep level my friends.
To use our words to hurt ourselves and others: “My soul is in the midst of lions; I lie down amid fiery beasts— the children of man, whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.” Psalm 57:4
Or to build up one another: “She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.” Proverbs 31:26 and “May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus” Romans 5:15
How will you use your words today, this week, this month, and this year? To build up or to tear down?