How many times have you ever told another person they are worthless or stupid? No right, you just wouldn’t. It’s not appropriate, it’s damaging and downright hurtful – so why is it ok to say it to yourself??
Conversation with another complete introvert who has also struggled on times and we were howling at the things we say to ourselves yet give each other wonderful compliments because what we see in others we cannot see in ourselves. Many of you will be uncomfortably smiling at this thinking, yep I do that too! You’re not alone, we seriously are our own worst critics!
Ok, hands up if any of these have been uttered by yourself to yourself:
You truly are a horrible person
You are a worthless person
You’ll mess it up anyway so why bother?
You think they like you?
And now put your hand down because it would never enter your conscious mind to say it to anyone else. We did compile a very big list while giggling but it would become rather depressing so not going to list all that we said, but you get the idea. And I bet many of you can add to our list quite easily depending on your own personal demons. Because that’s what they are, the little voice inside your head that negatively takes over and for some reason we find that voice easier to believe than the one that says positive or happy things. It’s all very weird, and the worst part is you are absolutely aware of it!
And here’s another thing, just how many self help books do we need??? And how many of them have you actually read properly and stopped buying the next one?? Yep. I’ve had loads over the years, they’re all very pretty and say helpful things but clearly didn’t help because I still went on to buy the next one and still said negative things to myself.
If you’ve read my previous entry you will know that my depression manifests itself in the way I view myself physically and my poor relationship with food so most of my self comments are around appearance and how I think I’m perceived. Two totally different things – as you know too! You don’t need me to reinforce what you already know.
What helped me? A couple of things, yes the photography and art works I created were a major moving forward but it took a long time. If you’ve suffered for many years then you know it’s not going to be an overnight fix. We have to change internal habits, especially the damaging ones. Yet sometimes those damaging habits are what we rely on in a twisted way. They almost become comforting, as if it would be too scary to see what life is like without them – it might be even worse is what the negative voice says to you.
And an outsider looking in can often suggest things you can’t see, like photography being suggested to me. Keeping that happy diary, haha tried that!! Managed about three days, that one where you’re supposed to write down things that made you happy or things you like about yourself. Yep, think it was all of three days, and then I cheated and on day four said ‘I managed three days’.
So, all I can suggest is that you put a picture of someone you’re close to, family member or friend, on the mirror you talk to so next time you’re tempted to say something negative look at them not you. Would you say it to them? No, then don’t say it yourself either, well try not to, and if you get to day five in the happy diary well done you!