Every day I talk to clients, friends, and family members who are faced with the same issues you and I are dealing with. Every one of us has weaknesses, faults, flaws, etc. and yet we expect everyone around us (and ourselves) to be perfect and don’t give ourselves a break. We are judgmental and critical and can often have a really mean and nasty inner critic who loves nothing more than to keep pointing out all our flaws. And, because we think we should be perfect, we highlight and focus on those flaws and believe we are unworthy, unlovable, undeserving. Sound familiar?
You are a beautiful and unique individual. You were designed to be different. We are all meant to have weaknesses and flaws. And, you have incredible strengths and resilience that will help you overcome any of life’s challenges. They work hand in hand. You are already gifted with everything you need to overcome and conquer. You just have to reach inside, tap into it, and bring it out into the light.
So the next time something happens and your negative inner dialogue tries to bring up your flaws and shortcomings first. Stop the tape. Rewind. And think about how you are uniquely gifted in a way that sets you apart and allows you to handle whatever challenge you’re facing with your inherent strengths.
“I will never be as thin as so and so is…” can be turned into, “I will face today as a new challenge and keep making healthy choices. I will put myself first because I know that being healthy from the inside out is the best way to care for my family. Any setbacks are learning opportunities on how to succeed more tomorrow.”
“I am a failure as a parent. My ex and I couldn’t make it work. Now my kids are living in two homes…” becomes, “I will make every interaction with my children as loving and meaningful as possible. I will call them daily, have special outings, and be fully present and engaged with them every time I am with them. All of my interactions with them will be focused on showing my children how their parents can successfully work together to co-parent effectively.”
Or, “I will never learn this, never graduate, and always be part of the working poor just like the rest of my family!” You can take control of that thought and tell yourself, “I will study; I will reach out to classmates, professors, and tutors; I will practice; and I will learn this college material, graduate and have a rewarding career. I control my future and my success.”
In any difficult situation tell yourself, “I am enough!” No matter what your circumstances in life, you are strong enough to live through and overcome them. It may not be easy, but it is absolutely possible. Your challenges can be a natural outlet to let your strengths shine through if you let them. You just have to learn how to harness them and not give up. Remember to embrace your gifts AND your flaws! We all have them so stop insisting you shouldn’t have any. And, don’t allow your inner critic to be mean and nasty to you because of them. You really are whole, perfect, and complete…just as you are.