I made some offhanded self-deprecating remark the other day, probably about my weight, and it brought tears to a friend’s eyes. That stunned me. I don’t always think about the impact my words have. These were tears of frustration that I don’t see myself the way that she sees me.
I tend not to take myself very seriously, so when others do, it takes me by surprise. And in this particular incident it really made me think. If my words about me were toxic to her, how toxic were they to my subconscious? How much damage am I doing to my psyche when I self-insult? Does my heart take me more seriously than I do?
And I’m fairly certain when I do this, more than half the time I’m not even aware of it. It’s like I’m injecting myself with carcinogens in my sleep or something. I really need to pay more attention.
I have another friend who is downright brutal to herself. And she’s a kind person. She would never talk about anyone else the way she talks about herself. Why? Because she wouldn’t want to hurt someone. Why does she not deserve the same courtesy? If you can’t be nice to yourself, why should anyone else be nice to you?
Yes, I’m a flawed human being. Yes, there are things I’d love to change, but probably won’t. But the truth is I’m actually pretty great. I’m loving and intelligent and funny and compassionate. I need to start saying these things out loud more often. I deserve to hear it. We all do.
So give yourself a compliment. Right now! Good habits have to start somewhere.