WHAT YOU WHISPER TO YOURSELF MATTERS
They say you become who you surround yourself with—specifically, your five closest people. This statistic can be given with two motives. One is to scare you into finding nicer friends. The second motive, which is the one I stick to, is a reminder to look for the awesome qualities in your friends. Your friends don’t have such awesome qualities? Maybe go back to motive one. But I have friends with the brightest hearts, & to think that by spending time with them means they may rub off on me, well sign me up! We all have our gifts—our strengths—our own version of beauty– & seeing the goodness in our friends isn’t meant to make us feel bad about ourselves or think we need to become a clone to be good enough. Recognizing the bright in someone makes us a brighter version of ourselves. It was Rumi who said, “The beauty you see in me is a reflection of you.” Our friends don’t need to be less than for us to feel worthy, & we don’t need to be better before we’re good enough.
I’m part of a supper club consisting of four couples. My three girlfriends in the group are gold– & they’re all different. One conquers the world. She’s up before the sun every day, works in the big city, & takes care of her baby girl at night. Another is the closest thing to a human Pinterest board I’ve ever seen. She makes having three kids look breezy, & you know a gift is from her because her calligraphy is on the custom name tag. The third makes your heart grow three sizes every time you’re with her by the way she builds her life around kids and single moms in her community.
Do I become the best version of myself and love these females best by wishing I was just like them and wearing myself out trying to mimic everything they do? Or do I admire their beauty & let their qualities influence me to be the best version of myself? And you know what else? We need to practice speaking beauty into our own lives. I bet you have thought something negative about yourself within the past hour—but when is the last time you thought something kind? I listened to a podcast a while back, & the guest talked about how she was practicing being kind to herself. One tactile way she was practicing was by wearing an elastic band around her wrist, & every time she thought something negative about herself, she would give the band a light pop. When she started this practice, she counted over 400 pops a day. That’s an average of 17 negative thoughts about herself an hour. When she was on the podcast, she was down to around 30 pops a day. And she was still practicing.
It shouldn’t even have to be said, but I think we all need to be re-taught how to look at ourselves and talk to ourselves. We don’t become our best selves by talking crap to our hearts. We become our best selves by loving who we are today & by letting the beauty in the people around fill us up. We don’t finally get to love ourselves when we’re on a level just above everyone else. It’s not a competition. That is a lie we’ve been fed since we were knee-high, & it’s time we told it to go back to hell where it belongs.
Practice with me. Start telling yourself things you love about yourself—not what you wish you could love about yourself—but what you love about yourself right now. You were created with such care. Treat yourself as such.