I don’t know about you, but I have a really, really big struggle with negative self-talk. If you could hear the inner voice in my head, you know that I am almost constantly undercutting myself. Telling myself that I’m no good at anything, that I’m a failure, that I don’t deserve anything, so on and so forth. I don’t know when this started because it’s been there in my head as long as I can remember. And I suspect that I’m not the only one who struggles with these things.
When I went to the Birth Without Fear Meetup, one of the things we were given were some awesome birth affirmation cards. They are SO pretty. Well, not knowing when we will have another kid (or if we will have another kid) I wished there was a way that I could use them now. Most of them were pretty birth specific, however. Except for one. One little one with a sunshine on it that said “Let go.” Well, now let go, that I can certainly apply to lots of situations. I can let go of the guilt, the shame, the frustration, all the negative feelings that I hold onto that keep me from living my life with joy and content. So I decided to tape it above the changing table, a place that I would see it often. After a few days of seeing it I was like, you know what? This is making a difference. It reminds me to breathe, it reminds me to give it to God, it reminds me that these things are not worth holding on to.
So I wanted to make some more. But I was seriously blanking on what to choose. There was so many and I was feeling overwhelmed. How would I ever narrow it down? So I decided to see if my friends on Facebook had any suggestions. And with their help, I was able to pick some. You can see some of them pictured below. The one over the window is a condensed version of 1 Corinthians 13 – the love chapter. It says “Love is . . .” and then around it there are all of the things that it says love it. From not envious to kind and everything in between.
I didn’t make them particularly fancy. I just made them functional. I used markers and paper and put them up with painter’s tape in places that I end up a lot (in front of the sink, behind the stove, above our table, etc). I didn’t want anything permanent because I wanted to be able to change them out if the need arises.
I have to say, they are making a difference. I can turn to them and read them when I’m feeling overwhelmed. I can try to focus on them instead of focusing on all the negative things. And it helps fill my heart with joy and contentment and to remind me that I am a beloved daughter of the King. When I can think of myself in this way, instead of negatively, I’m kinder to my kids, I have more energy to work on the housework and to play with them, and I’m kinder to myself. It’s not magic and it doesn’t always work – I have to be willing to embrace it and not fight it – but it is making a difference.
So, tell me, what words would you choose to include if you do this? Is negative self-talk a struggle for you as well? I do encourage you to do this with your own favorite quotes or Bible verses. The ones I have pictured are only some of mine, but yours could be anything you want.