Along with my birthday quickly approaching, it is my common practice to spend time reflecting on past years and how I want to spend my future. I have been dedicating myself to reading more and listening to podcasts (apparently they have been around for a long time and I’m just now jumping on the bandwagon) and I’m realizing with a cowering lower of my head that my self-speech the past *almost* 36 years has been…..
Well, it’s been shit.
I’m sorry for the swear word, but you know what, I can’t think of another word that carries the same weight for what I’ve been saying to myself; in my head; on repeat for over three decades now. Listening to a recent podcast by the lovely Jenna Kutcher (GoalDigger Podcast) I learned that women have between 60,000-80,000 thoughts. This translates to 60,000-80,000 times that we can be really nice to ourselves…..OR 60,000-80,000 times that we can be absolutely awful to ourselves.
I started paying attention to my conversations with other women. I noticed that there was a lot of self-destructive talk that was merely uttered without thought. Such as the “I’m sorry” a million times over. What are we so sorry for? “I’m sorry for being such a bad friend.” “I’m sorry for always being late.” “I’m sorry for my hot mess hair – it’s been a morning!” “I’m sorry for the kids being so whiny, no nap in three days!” “I’m sorry I’ve been MIA!”
GIRL- STOP WITH THE I’m SORRY’s!!!!!
Seriously, I think I can speak for every single woman alive when I say “WE GET IT!” We know how hard it is to just EXIST some days. Literally, I have had days where I cannot even process the idea of my feet hitting the floor because it would require me rolling over in my bed and that process was far too strenuous for me at the time. And if you have never had that kind of day, then perhaps you have had a day that started out just like every other one, but you got news of a loved one or for yourself that turned your world inside out. I read a statement in Cleo Wade’s book “Heart Talk” that made my soul melt.
Each person’s life is so much more difficult that we could ever imagine. – Cleo Wade
It’s easy to get swept up in the “her life is so easy” thought process because of what we see on the outside or on social media. This is where my age has made me appreciate this perspective. I know that for every beautiful scene photographed are a dozen snapshots that happened before that were a complete disaster. While photos can be whitened, brightened, tweaked, and cropped – a person is still a person and her life is so much more than can ever be told by just those photos.
I am no expert on self-confidence, but I do know a thing or two about looking at a photograph of myself and picking every single flaw apart. I have walked into a room feeling pretty good about myself in a new outfit and a fresh brow wax and then because of low self-worth I saw the girl 10 feet from me who looked stunning and immediately felt less-than-stellar.
Do you know what I know NOW?
That woman in the photograph I was picking apart was just lovely. Sure, there are fine lines, tummy rolls, and a crooked smile….but when my daughter looks at that picture she is going to say “Mommy, you look beautiful.” And that girl 10 feet from me? She was feeling insecure and afraid she was going to trip over her own heels.
Why are we so afraid to love ourselves? Why are we constantly saying “I’m stupid.” “I’m an idiot.” “I’m sorry.” “I’m not enough.” “I’m not pretty enough.” “I’m not thin enough.” “I don’t have a degree.” “I don’t have a career.” “I don’t have enough time.” “I’m too busy.” “I am too tired.”
Tomorrow I turn 36. That means that I have been on this earth 13,140 days (give or take a couple of days due to leap years – I didn’t count those. HAHA). I am going to use this year to be kinder to myself. To speak gently to myself. To treat myself with the respect and love that I deserve.
What about you? Will you lock arms with me? Will you start a brand new day tomorrow? Will you learn how to shut out that inner bitch of a girl who keeps telling you those mean things? I’m happy to help you give her a punch in the face. Multiple times, if necessary. Let’s go, girl! Let’s grow and get happier.