I’m quick to praise people.
When someone does something that moves me- I can rave about it for years! Literally. Ask my friends and family, they’ll tell you.
However there came a time I realised that I was never that quick to praise myself.
No matter what I did- I could pull apart any achievement- belittle it as nothing and never appreciate the feats I’d accomplished.
I discovered that I was super critical of myself- if I made a mistake I’d blow it to unreasonable magnitudes…
Just recently I’d done something that, had it been anyone else who had done it, I would’ve been super impressed!
I would’ve written a blog post about what they’d done and sent it to you all via email- contacted my media friends about it- I mean, I would’ve been shouting it from the rooftops- because it really was that impressive!
And yet- the person who had done this thing was Me- so what did I do?
Instead of praising myself- I highlighted every mistake-
I scolded myself about everything that could’ve been done better and began to go over and over it in my head-
Eventually I poured out my utter disappointment in Myself to my husband-
As I was speaking with him it hit me! This was a very common habit of mine!
As I was speaking about how terrible I felt- I stopped myself- and said to my husband: “You know what’s so bizarre? Had someone else done what I did, I would’ve been blown away! I would’ve been so very proud of them- Why can’t I do that for me?”
Then we spoke about where this destructive behaviour may have stemmed from- we may have found the source- or not- I don’t think it really matters.
What does matter is that for the first time I realised that this was a self-destructive pattern I fell into every single time I achieved something- usually I’d be so very disappointed with myself for something I’d done that I would just never do it again.
And thus progress was difficult.
After I realised that this was merely a very bad habit and not the truth of the way things reallywere, I stopped criticising myself for this incredible feat I’d just achieved. What happened next was lovely: I genuinely felt so very proud of myself.
I even wrote Me a thank You letter!
In that letter I praised myself. I highlighted the amazing things I’d done. I told myself, “I’m honoured to be You!”
It felt good. So very good.
I could feel my Self enjoying the praise and exuding a deep sense of gratitude for being appreciated- finally!
We hear about folks writing letters to their “Younger Self”… here’s the thing-
Your “younger self” no longer exists.
She’s long gone.
Nothing you say or do now will ever impact her.
But there is someone who is super keen to hear from You- and would greatly benefit from you writing to her.
She’s done amazing things throughout your life.
She’s the one person who’s felt every thing you’ve ever felt-
She’s never left you- never turned her back on you-
even when You’ve criticised her and told her repeatedly that’s she’s not good enough- she’s faithfully woken up every morning and walked each step of your days with You.
She’s hoped for You.
And in those moments when you thought you couldn’t anymore- she got up time and time again- without a word- and she continued breathing for you- and walking- and doing this very hard life with You.
She needs to know that You see her.
Honour her by recognising all she’s done for You.
Praise her, very specifically for the amazing things she’s done.
Write a letter to her telling her how grateful You are for her- and how honoured You are that this incredible, phenomenal, tenacious, mind-blowing human being is You!
I Send You Love,