How you treat yourself is a choice. It’s YOUR choice.
No one, unfortunately, can choose for you. And I want you to consider that this is critical. That how you treat yourself creates the foundation upon which you interact in the world. The bad news is, sometimes we have to untangle thoughts and experiences that are in the way of us treating ourselves kindly and with respect. AND the awesome news is YOU have all the power here. Really.
It’s not about letting yourself off the “hook.”
When I say get off your own back, I don’t mean let yourself off the hook from making the progress you want to make. I mean change the conversation you’re having with yourself. Rather than attacking and judging, which we all do and need to stop immediately because it serves absolutely no purpose, but to keep us down. Think about it. NOBODY really grows this way anyway — by beating themselves up. But I have a lot of clients who would resist me on this idea, until they start to do the "Thought Work," I teach, and then it's gleeful "a-ha's," all over the place...
"You mean I can stop beating myself up and my life will not fall apart, but actually get better?" Heck yeah, sister.
If you practice the model, as I teach it throughout my blog, you will see what I mean too. Start supporting and encouraging yourself. Strangely, sometimes, we don’t do this because that means we have to really get into action, instead of indulging in not liking ourselves.
The criticism or shame we THINK will help us get back on track and get our behinds moving, actually, has the opposite effect.
Take a look at one of my coaching client's model. By the way, anytime I share a coaching client's model with you it is always with their permission. So here we go.
My lovely client has achieved a lot of success and continues to do so. But finds herself working long, long hours and is wanting to change that. Initially, she thought the circumstance was “My schedule never works for me.” Remember, Circumstance equals “just the facts.” One could actually argue her schedule works very well for her. Not the one that is on her Google Calendar, but the internal one she’s been operating from for quite a while. Here's what I mean by this.
Ask yourself, "what seems like it's not working for me?"
It's usually the thing(s) you complain about, feel bad about, beat yourself up over, and indulge in massive amounts of confusion and overwhelm. Got your thing?
Now ask yourself how is this "problem" of mine keeping me safe?
And by safe I mean a false sense of security. It feels safe but it can be quite poisonous actually. What do you gain from having this problem? Most times you'll find it's keeping you in the familiar, keeping you stuck, keeping you from the soul searching you really want, but are too afraid to do. Ultimately, it's keeping you from your juicy dreams and desires.
Model your thoughts and your life WILL change.
So back to my coaching client's model below, as you can see what she gained from staying in frustration about her schedule is that she "got to stay busy," and avoid the uncomfortable process of figuring it out, which would mean she was getting on with her bigger dreams and that scared her.
Remember as you read this:
A= Actions, Inactions or Reactions
Recall Circumstances are facts, they can be proven in a court of law. Because not everyone agrees that her schedule doesn’t work, the circumstance simply translates to: C = I have a schedule.
When we’re saying “It never works for me,” generally our brains are trying to help us kick ourselves into gear. To not let us get complacent about the change we’re wanting to make. But the thought, "It never works for me," is ACTUALLY driving the result of “staying busy and over-worked.”
So take a look at the above model again. Look at the intentional model on the right side. Look at what not indulging in self-criticism can create. Wow!
Examine the difference in results she creates for herself by looking at her current thinking and then choosing a different, more supportive, thought. Volia! She figures it out.
You have so much power to create in your life.
You just need to remember to pick it up, your power that is! Over and over and over again. Others may label you, have opinions about you, and think they know your next steps. That’s fine. And that totally doesn’t matter. Martha Beck has a saying I love, “I respectfully do not care.” It's your business, nobody else's. Let this encourage you to let YOUR internal compass be your guide as to how you treat you and how your journey is going. Not how others feel about it. You have no control over that anyway, and so it's a total waste of energy.
Have your own back, instead of being on it.
The better you treat yourself, the more room you find to grow, the better you treat others and the happier you begin to feel. And the first step in doing this, is becoming aware of what you are thinking about yourself right now. Because once you do that, you realize you can choose again. This is the beauty of our thoughts. You can choose to think ANYTHING that you want.
You can choose to give up ALL criticism of yourself. Draw a line in the sand right now, and say, "NO MORE!"
You would not let others treat you the way you are treating yourself, and I can bet you would never dare talk to anyone as harshly and as critically as you talk to yourself. So maybe you can say, "yeah, the first part of my life I was really critical with myself and then I completely gave it up."- like you might decide to give up sugar or fast food.
That's a crazy concept to me, "just give up criticism." But I love this idea and practice it everyday. Believe me mama it's a practice, but you can do it, and it feels so much better. And by the way, I have not given up on my goals and become a couch potato. I have more space for my dreams and goals, and some of those just might include curling up on purpose on the couch to just do nothing for an hour too. It's all part of the game.
THOUGHTS ARE OPTIONAL!
What a concept huh? You can think anything you want to, so why not focus on all that is GREAT about you and take a break from the self-judgment and see how your life changes for the good, forever. Don't just read this blog, do the work, try it out each week.
Get out a sheet of paper and write 50 things you like about yourself. If you can only come up with 5, keep a log and add to it each day. It can be little stuff like, "I like my eye brows," all the way to the big stuff like, "I have a compassionate heart."Dig if you need to, your brain is not used to focusing on the positive, so don't feel bad if this is not easy for you. Just know it's part of the proess and you are normal. Lots of love.
Let me know how it goes.