Self Care and Nurturing ~ What is Your Self Talk Like?By Darlene Ouimet
How do you talk to yourself? Are you loving and patient with yourself or are you the evil boss in your own life? Are you understanding and nurturing towards yourself or are you constantly nagging and reprimanding?
When you think about re-parenting yourself, do you think about the kind of parent that you would have loved to have or the most loving perfect parent that ever walked the earth and then BE that parent to yourself, or do you treat yourself the same “not good enough way” that you were treated somewhere along the line in the past?
What role do you play in your own life?
Paying attention to my “self talk” has been and continues to be a huge part of my process. And self talk is sneaky; if I don’t stop the spin long enough to get quiet and LISTEN to what is going on “back there” in the depths of my own mind, I don’t even notice when I am being hard on myself.
I have been suffering from a little “burn out”. I knew that I was working too hard and that I needed a vacation and I bargained with myself that I could take two weeks off but when I came home from my totally nurturing holiday and found that I still needed more time for myself I started to reprimand myself . I got impatient with myself. I told myself to shape up and get with it. Read the following “self talk list” with the totally inappropriate and impatient voice infliction laced with a big dose of exasperation.
Myself to myself: “WHAT?? You need MORE time off? Jeeze.. What is wrong with you? What are you so tired all the time? You just had a vacation!” How much time off do you NEED?”
What the heck is in your way now?? Why do you always have to be ‘processing’ something? Why can’t you just be normal?
“When are you going to finish that book? I bet you are not EVER going to finish it. What the hell kind of ‘example’ are you being to your readers? Why don’t you just give this up?”
“What?? You are hungry again!?”
“OH OKAY fine then take more time off… jeeze…frick… you just…. grrrrr”
This kind of self talk is not rooted in love. This kind of talk is invalidating. There is no acknowledgement in for how hard I work or how much I have accomplished these past few years and when I feel this way towards myself I DON’T acknowledge any of my progress because it isn’t enough anymore. This kind of self talk reinforces the exact same beliefs that I have worked so hard to overcome; the belief that whatever I do is “not enough” and “not good enough” and it invalidates my needs by actually questioning them and even questioning my right to have needs. This talk has its roots in the way that I was taught to consider myself and my needs and it still rears its ugly head when I am tired or not paying attention because that kind of treatment and self disregard was with me for so long. It isn’t my default mode anymore, but it was for so long that it still comes up.
This kind of self reprimanding and discounting self talk/self-thought is not beneficial to the formation of freedom and wholeness and does not produce the desired results leading to self love and self care which are the path ways to self esteem recovery and emotional healing.
I still have to take a step back and listen to what is going on “back there”. Telling the voices to “shut up” is still abusive towards ME. I find it works much better if I listen closely to what is going on with me and find out what I am actually saying to myself. Then I can find out where it is coming from and usually it has its roots in the past. In this case I had decided that a two week break would be “long enough” and I was impatient with myself for needing more time to rejuvenate. The root of this however is found in my childhood history. The way that I was regarding myself had actually been taught to me. It was the same way that I had to accept being regarded as a child from teachers, adults, aunts and uncles. I learned to treat myself that way and unlearning it has been a huge task. Once in a while I still have to “cement” the new belief system I have been forming for the last 7 years by continuing to acknowledge and override the old belief system.
What is your self talk like? Do you speak to yourself with a loving attitude or do you constantly ask yourself for more, never measuring up to your own expectations? Where do those expectations come from? Do you regard yourself with patience, accepting yourself for where you are at, or do you reprimand yourself with thoughts filled with impatient frustration?
The way you regard yourself is what you will communicate about the way you want to be regarded.
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