I’m a total self help junkie. Not sure why, exactly, but I know that I always have been. Anytime I’m facing a personal problem I can’t solve on my own, or simply want to understand myself a little bit better, I pick up a book and get to thinking.
In terms of bang for your buck, a self help book and an open mind are where it’s at when you need to get your shit together. I’d say on average I take one or two key points from each book to assimilate into my world. Over time, a few takeaways from a few books really add up, and before I know it, I’ve changed.
Oh. And Podcasts. If you’re looking to make a change, they help too. I listen to podcasts by people I respect, and so often they have great book suggestions. Once you’ve found a couple of books and a couple of podcasts that speak to you, the rabbit hole you can find yourself in is pretty intense.
So anyway, like I said, I’ve pretty much always been this way. But it wasn’t until recently that I really began to embrace the nerd inside of me who just wants to read and work on herself. I was listening to the Jillian Michaels podcast a few years back, and she had Tara Mohr, the author of Playing Big, on her show. I don’t remember what they were talking about, but I know it spoke to me enough that I bought the book. This was the one that sent me down my rabbit hole.
I could spend a ton of time spouting off all of the takeaways, but there is one chapter that resonated with me immediately. It was the catalyst I needed to make some major changes.
You guys. We are so MEAN to ourselves!!! I’m not talking about the collective we being mean to the collective them. Although that is definitely a thing, too. I’m talking about the fact that we talk so much shit to our own selves in our own heads. It’s ridiculous. I had no idea how hard I was on myself and how rarely (if ever) I cut myself a break.
Not only did Playing Big teach me how unkind I was on myself in general, but it also gave me tools to spot the times when I’m being unkind (because if you can’t recognize it you can’t stop it), and then the tools to change the dialogue inside my head. This in and of itself is pretty profound if you ask me.
But the magic of it all happened after I got in the habit of not being a jerk to myself. My confidence skyrocketed. I’ve come to the conclusion that when we're talking down to ourselves all the time there is no room left in our head for all of the good stuff we could be telling ourselves. We can’t simultaneously build ourselves up and tear ourselves down. It just doesn’t work that way. We kind have to choose one or the other.
I mean, I’m not saying I’m perfect. I have my insecure moments every day. It’s just that being kind to myself helps me believe in my own amazingness, and that belief then helps me to move past the insecure moments with greater ease than before.
I definitely have some specific tips that helped me start to make this change. I will compile them and share them on an upcoming podcast episode.
But the short of it is this: pay attention to how you feel. When you're feeling a crappy about yourself, that’s the time to ask “Hmmm...what am I saying to myself right now?” Chances are whatever is going on in your brain ain’t nice. Once that’s confirmed, think about how you’d respond to a trusted friend who was saying the same things, out loud, about herself. Then, respond that way to YOU.
I know it might sound a little bit silly and kind of woo-woo affirmation-y or whatever. But seriously, it works. We all deserve to love and trust ourselves. We all deserve to feel confident in our own skin. And you guys, world deserves what we have to offer when we are confident, when we love and trust ourselves. In my experience, there’s just no way to do any of this if we are constantly talking down to ourselves.
So, do yourself, and the rest of the world a favor. Be nice…to YOU! You deserve it.