“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.” Anonymous
Self-defeating, belittling and shaming thoughts, are the last thing we need when we’re just trying to get through another day with the burdens of living with chronic disease, illness or other health issues.
We need resilience to cope, adapt and ultimately to prevail and thrive in our lives – thriving in a way that probably looks different than what we’d imagined for ourselves before we got sick. The aforementioned thoughts… those eat away at our resilience.
So the positive take on “defeating self-defeating messages” is really one of building and strengthening our resilience. A daily gratitude practice gradually builds inner strength. Self-compassion in the difficult moment reduces unnecessary suffering. And finally, the idea of self-blessing.
Self-blessing is an ointment to the constant driving of our ambitions – not necessarily a replacement – but a counter to the nagging. Blessing yourself for the positive act you DID or didn’t do – however small – is surely an act of self-love is it not? Sure, the nagging voice may keep at it. But you can say to it “And, I did THIS!”.
I challenge you to a daily practice of self-blessing for at least 3 things. Maybe for moving forward (e.g. added 5 minutes to exercise). Or for not going backwards (e.g. 11th night in a row in bed by 10:00). Maybe for having compassion for yourself (e.g. felt poorly, skipped my walk but didn’t spiral into shame). Perhaps for letting something go (e.g. took care of myself by not going to party last night). Maybe for kind, forgiving or generous acts to others?
You get to choose. And you’ll have to believe you deserve the blessing. Consider this a form of “self-treatment”. You got something better to do? ~Z