Love Yourself First

In an article at PsychAlive.org, author Jo Barrington describes self-loathing :

“It can be subtle, we may habitually compare ourselves to others, for instance, constantly finding fault with ourselves and putting ourselves down, with no real awareness that there is anything amiss. “

As a younger woman, I never even realized how often and how severely I put myself down and spoke in a berating way to myself about myself. “What is wrong with you” is still a thought I have often – although I am getting better at catching myself before or during the “self-mental abuse”.  I say “self-mental abuse” because if anyone one else in the world talked to me like that, it would 100% be classified as mental abuse.

The sad thing is, I am not alone when it comes to self-deprecation. I have discovered that there are many women (and men) that speak about themselves very negatively and don’t even realize how damaging it is to not only their self-esteem, but to the over all success of their lives and (as entrepreneurs especially) their business.

I recently asked some of our WESOS Lifetime Sisters how they participate in negative self-talk. Here are a couple examples that I received:

WESOS Sister Paula Davis said this, “Negative self-talk and me, well, we go way back. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t allow it to limit my dreams, to dissect my accomplishments, or to tear at my self-confidence. I used to think I was alone in this.”

And Debra Hanes said, “I practice what I call “Inner Rebel Way ™. I stop and get silent, reflect on what I’m feeling without attaching thoughts to it.”

This is the same way I have felt many times as I have become more aware of the language of my thoughts. Feeling this way about ourselves could never be mistaken for love – which is what we have been talking about for decades! We must love ourselves in order to be fully loved by others and to fully love them back.

Loving ourselves has become much more than a cliché or trendy thing to say – it has to be integrated into our lives so that we can fully discover ourselves and connect with others on an authentic level which in turn will grow our networks and our businesses.

One WESOS Sister that answered my question, Marie Herman, does not struggle with negative self talk and limiting beliefs. I was very pleased to read that not everyone suffers from this ‘affliction’.

Marie Herman said, “I personally don’t struggle with this. If anything, I’m too positive with myself.”

And then goes on to give this sage advice,

“Retraining your mind to be more reasonable is the key. Instead of I am overwhelmed and I can’t handle this, replace those thoughts with “I can handle anything life throws at me. I just need to stay calm and keep focused. I won’t let my inner fears stop me from achieving my goals.”

I would like to follow the lead of Marie and I look forward to “being too positive with myself”! For now, I am so very happy that I have so many supportive, loving women around me to reinforce positive feelings of myself and my business. Hearing encouragement and positive beliefs from others sure makes being positive about yourself a much easier road to travel.

Thank you to the Lifetime Sisters, Marie, Paula and Deb for your personal stories and giving me the confidence to write this article – each of you is a shining example of getting out of your comfort zone and challenging yourselves to the next level!

Jean

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