Entering week three of my twelve week challenge I have come to realize the biggest ‘change’ I need to make is in my mind. What do I hear and receive internally that keeps me from being the person I want to be mentally/physically/emotionally?
It was another busy week working with a few new survivors and a few that I am working with on a continual basis to achieve their personal goals. I did an exercise with them that had them think about the internalized messages they are hearing. If you’d like to consider ‘re-training’ your mind to embrace the positive God-given messages then take time to do this exercise:
Answer the following questions:
- In regards to negative thoughts when I was a child or teen I was told or heard (this can be from family or friends) about myself:
ex: “Suck in that tummy.” or “You’ll never get him as a boyfriend.” or “Shouldn’t you drink diet coke?” And it might be worse for some: “You’ll never amount to anything.” or “You’re pretty but not smart.” or “You’re a waste or lazy.”
2. I still think that:
As adults we can embrace the logic that those were lies told by people to hurt us or harm us, however, unless we re-train our minds to embrace the positive we continue to think the negative subconsciously. Ex: “I’ll always be fat.” or “I’ll never be good enough for ____” or “I’m not smart enough.” and anything that begins with “I can’t.”
I know in my case I subconsciously embraced a specific negative: “I’m not good enough.”
Why might I embrace that particular message? I am not a psychologist so I won’t try to give a specific answer, however, I can say from the wisdom and understanding I’ve been given by God I believe that is the underlying message I felt as I tried to live to others standards. There were many incidents in my life when people (friends, ministers, etc) outside of my family made comments that left me feeling less than, not as good, or as accomplished as others.
I had to re-train my mind and embrace the truth of who I am. I am good enough. By walking in God’s will I have the security of his grace to give me the abilities needed for what he leads me to accomplish.
3. Make a list of positive statements about yourself. If you can, try to find the opposite of the negatives you wrote down.
Ex. “I am smart and beautiful.” or “I can do anything with God who gives me strength.”
Two of the women I met with this week have an assignment to look in the mirror and look at themselves. Each was given a positive statement that pertained to re-training their mind and they are to say it out loud to themselves as they look in the mirror. Might sound simple but for most who struggle with overcoming abuse or insecurity find it hard to really look at themselves in the mirror. The biggest battle is accepting who you are and loving yourself.
Finally, that last thing I want to hear is, “I’m this way for a reason.” or “This happened for a reason.” I can’t stand that statement. It goes against our free will. We make choices and we live the consequences. Other people make choices (some devastating choices) and we get caught as innocent victims in the midst of their choices and consequences. What is true is God brings a greater good from everything when we give it up to him.
Think about these statements this week in your personal challenge. You don’t have to be ‘stuck’. Re-train your mind, listen to the positive, and give God the ‘ok’ to turn the bad into good.
PS. Happy Father’s Day!!! Love you DAD!!!