Do you speak to yourself unkindly? Do you speak to yourself in a way that you would use with your loved ones? I’m wondering how many of you – much like myself – speak to yourself in your head when something hasn’t gone right or you’ve done something wrong, whatever the case may be, very unkindly, like in a way that you would not speak to your partner or your children, but we say those words to ourselves. I do it. I know I do it even not meaning to do it. Being unaware of how much I do do it.
So today, I wanted to talk about how self care is speaking kindly to yourself. That doesn’t mean you can’t give yourself tough love, that doesn’t mean you can’t get on yourself for not being where you wanna be in life, but man, can we be super, super unkind to ourselves. And really, if we were to speak that way to anyone else, we know it doesn’t serve them. It would be out of anger. It would be to hurt that person, but we do it to ourselves all the time. You know, when you step out of the shower, you check yourself in the mirror and you go, “Ugh, disgusting.” I know I’ve done that before.
Or when you screw up, you do something terrible, you do something you’re not supposed to do, you forget something, and you are talking to yourself going, “God! I am the worst mom ever! How stupid could I be?!”
Really? I highly doubt you are the worst mom ever. And I’m also saying that to myself ’cause I subconsciously say these things without even thinking of ’em, thinking about what it means and how it’s affecting me because at the end of the day, thoughts and words affect us and if that’s how we are always speaking to ourselves, if we are constantly beating ourselves up and beating ourselves down really, with that kind of language, with those kind of words. I mean, it’s no wonder why your self-esteem may drop or you won’t feel great about yourselves because, okay, you screwed up, but are you really the worst mom in the world? Are you stupid? You may have made a stupid mistake, but that doesn’t make you stupid.
Words matter. How we use them matter. The things that come out of our mouth or the words that we place on ourselves affect how we feel about ourselves. And honestly – I know me – I so casually think these things from time to time and I’ve had to really make a conscious effort of recognizing when I do it and changing how I’m speaking to myself, you know?
When I look in the mirror and I don’t like what I see – like, “Okay. Man, your legs are looking fabulous today. Let’s see what we else we can do to get this tummy back.” That’s a different way instead of saying in the mirror like, “God, this is just disgusting.” That’s not serving me in any way.
We can want to change many things about ourselves, but we don’t have to talk down to ourselves in order to achieve those things. As a matter of fact, I would personally say that that works against you – makes you feel worse, doesn’t motivate you. So when you catch yourself speaking to yourself in that way – I know y’all are guilty of it, you may not even be aware that you’re doing it. I guarantee. You’re not even aware of how much you do it. I wasn’t.
Catch yourself in those moments and change the words that you are using with yourself and try speaking kindly to yourself. So instead of going, “Oh my God, I’m so stupid,” – “Ooh, that was a mistake. Okay. I’m gonna do better next time” or “Oops, I did not mean to do that. That wasn’t smart.”
Don’t call yourself stupid. You’re not disgusting. You’re not the worst mother ever. And any of the other words that could possibly enter your head that you say to yourself when you are not happy with how you look or what you did or the mistake that you made. We will never ever speak to your children or our partners that way or our friends that way so why are we speaking to ourselves in that way?
So this week, when you catch yourself speaking to yourself in that way, just stop yourself and change the wording, change how you approach it and try speaking kindly to yourself. Instead of calling yourself stupid – maybe you did do something stupid – call the act stupid. “Oh well, that was a stupid mistake. Hm. Okay. Know better for next time.” It doesn’t make you stupid. We all make stupid mistakes, it doesn’t make the person stupid.
Our children make stupid mistakes, but I try really hard not to call my child stupid. The act can be stupid, the forgetting something can be not a great thing, but check how you are speaking to yourself and just make that small transition, acknowledge whatever it is that you don’t like in a more positive use of words and more effective use of words. Because beating ourselves up – man, are we our toughest critics. But, really, beating yourself down is not helping. It’s not. It’s not making you feel better, it’s really the opposite of self care, and it’s not gonna move you forward. It’s just gonna drag you down.
So let’s change that self talk – make it positive. Make it something that will actually move you forward. Have a conversation with yourself about what you’re gonna do differently the next time, but just beating yourself up? Not effective. Not good for your self care nor your self-esteem.
So I have tried my best to become very aware of this. Remember, it is a practice. It’s something you’ll have to do over and over and over. You’re not always gonna do it right, especially if it’s a natural habit for you to beat yourself up. Become aware of it and start changing the language that you are using on yourself. I’m in this process and I just wanted to share it with you guys, too.
So, happy Selfcare Sunday, mamas! I hope you have a wonderful week. Practice speaking kindly to yourselves.
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