You’re not good enough. You’re not pretty enough. You’re not smart enough. You’re not enough. How many of you have said these things to yourself?It may not be the exact same words, but it’s some rendition or theme of not feeling enough and letting the mean girl take over in your head. It’s your own mind telling you this. Stop and think about that for a minute…you tell yourself that you aren’t good enough.
You are the gate keeper of your mind, thoughts and self-image. Most of my adult life I’ve been a student of self-esteem. The outside tells us how we should look or behave. Our family and friends tell you who they think you should be and how you should behave. Then there is you – you have your own mind, thoughts and beliefs. It’s almost like living with two voices in your head. One voice is a nagging little voice that wants to put you down, hold you back and creates fear inside your mind – I call her the mean girl voice.
Then, we have the voice of truth, reason, and love. This voice is similar to having a best friend inside your head who loves you just the way you are.
This voice reminds you that you matter and you are good enough.
The voice of love reminds you to love yourself and accept you for who you are.
I know from firsthand experience that some days it can be hard to listen to the loving voice depending on the circumstances. Some days we are all tired or overwhelmed with life so it’s easy to allow that negative voice, the mean girl, to creep in to your mind.
From the first blink of your eyes in the morning you begin to talk to yourself whether you realize it or not. We all need to recognize our negative thought patterns and realize it is just that – negative irrational thoughts that serve no real purpose except to make us feel bad about us. Let me say it again, we all need to recognize our negative thought patterns and realize it is just that – negative irrational thoughts that serve no real purpose.
Once we learn how to recognize and identify our thought patterns as they occur we can start to choose how we react to them. I had a horrible habit of awful-izing, you know, when one thing goes wrong then the rest of your life is suddenly terrible. We think bad thoughts and we expect them to happen and nothing good will ever happen – ever again!
For example, you’re in a relationship and it’s not doing so great – maybe you had an argument. OMG, the next thing you know in your mind you are breaking up and you will never meet anyone again. It’s how your mind reacts to the negative thought process. And, nothing has actually happened yet.
Another example of negative thinking is when you constantly criticize yourself. This is an easy trap we can all fall into. We can all be unkind to ourselves, focusing in on all of our weaknesses and all our perceived flaws.
Then it gets worse, you now start to criticize others in your life. This can be the cause of tremendous strain on relationships. Negative self-talk and self criticism often results in low self esteem and a lack of confidence.
Negative thoughts often revolve around what’s wrong with your life. You become obsessed on negative aspects of your life. People trapped in negative thinking often feel hopeless because they don’t know what to do.
I am not saying just not think about things, you have to face your problems, and you have to plan for your future and you have to deal with different situations. You can’t bury your head in the sand and ignore everything. That is not what I am suggesting. And, I know trying to ‘think positive’ about a situation that is truly difficult doesn’t seem authentic either.
Below are some steps to beat the mean girl negativity talk from your head from time to time. Believe me; it seeps into my head too and affects everyone you know.
Catch Your Thoughts If You Can See if you can catch negative thoughts as they start and before they begin to take over. If can’t catch them in the beginning, then you have another opportunity to recognize them when a negative emotion arises as a response to the thought patterns. Be In the Moment Notice that negative thoughts mostly come from two places. The first is thinking about past mistakes, problems, guilt and anything in your life that did not go the way you believe it should have gone. The second is worrying about the future, fear of what may or may not happen for you. Then you’re truly in the present moment, the past and future have no power over you.
Stop the Old Record Player and Choose Your Thoughts Wisely Start paying attention to what is going on inside your mind at any given time. Become a constant observer of what goes on in your mind.
The mind is like a record playing the same old story over and over. The record will continue to play simply because the song sounds so familiar and it’s comforting if you do not recognize the same old pattern.
By paying attention to your thoughts and patterns, you become aware of your mind and then you become mindful. Eventually, the mean girl thoughts will lose their hold on you.
Build Your Mind The more you practice awareness of your thought patterns and what they’re doing to you, the faster you’ll begin to redirect yourself again to being mindful of the moment.
Use your mind like you use your muscles. You have to work out to build muscle. You must work to become mentally strong. In time the old habits will go away and you will feel peace.
I hope these few tips will help you learn how to not listen to the mean girl in your head. If you are looking for some more tips and want to boost your self-esteem, check out my book Life Happens: Bounce Back! Remember, self-love is truly the best love.
Have a beautiful day and do not let the mean girl get to you.