Do you ever think about the words that you speak over yourself? The Bible says that we have the power of life and death in our words. Many of us have no problem with speaking positive, encouraging words over others but not over ourselves. “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks”, is true but what if we have contempt for ourselves? One of the biggest hurdles some of us face is loving and forgiving ourselves.I believe that there are four basic reasons why this is true.
We Know Our Own Shortcomings
We know our faults, shortcomings, struggles and weaknesses. When I look at you, I may or may not know some of your struggles but I can be objective and positive. You may be struggling but I see your strides to change and to grow and am able to call out your strengths and your efforts to change and to become a more whole person. When I look in the mirror, I often see the flawed human being that I am and how I wish that this person were struggling less or were nicer. I know ever scar and wrinkle. I know that I have nice eyes but that they used to be brighter or bolder. I see the lines on my neck that I used to notice on my mother and remember how I thought that they were strange.
We Hear the Negative Words Spoken Over us in Childhood
Those words in our head about ourselves often come from childhood. Even if we have made a choice to not believe them, they still creep in on occasion. Maybe your mother told you that your sister was the pretty one and she worried if you would ever find someone to love you. Maybe your father rejected your dreams of being someone successful by telling you that you could never live up to your dreams. Maybe you were told that you had to keep up your appearance because you weren’t smart enough to accomplish anything and had to depend on your looks alone.
We Find it Easier to See and Believe the Negative
Human nature makes it easier to find and acknowledge the negative than the positive. Think of how often you point out what your child is not doing rather than acknowledge what they are doing, or your spouse or co-worker or friend. When I ask a client to name five things they like about themselves, most struggle but if I ask for five things that they dislike about themselves, they often list ten.
We have an Enemy of our Souls
The Bible calls Satan the Accuser and the Father of Lies. He constantly speaks lies and accusations to us and about us. He often uses others but sometimes He speaks to us directly through those channels which He has created in us from childhood known as triggers. “You are a failure.” ” You never get it right.” “You always blow it.” “You are so dumb.” “You are ugly.”
What are you speaking over yourself? Do you know that it takes five positives to counteract a negative remark? Do you know that you will never be able to have another person see you in a positive light if you don’t see yourself that way? Do you know that it is harder to love someone who doesn’t love themselves? We have to begin to change the way that we speak to ourselves and about ourselves if we want a positive life and if we want to live out our destiny.
Think about a positive thing that you would like others to say about you and speak it over yourself. I often ask clients to write it out and tape it to their mirror. Read it out loud to yourself. It will seem odd at first but you will begin to believe it and feel differently in a short time. They say it takes 28 days to establish a habit. Why not begin today to develop the habit of encouraging yourself. It’s great when other people encourage us but why wait. Let’s begin to speak positive, affirming words over ourselves. “You is smart.” ” You is kind.” “You is important.”