What Do You Want To Give Your Child?
A big concern that many of my clients have had is how their view of themselves is affecting their children.
Deep breath. This is such a struggle. We are inundated each and every day with messages that we are not enough. Different kinds of abuse exacerbate our struggle. Our bodies are not enough. Our skills are not enough. We are not perfect enough. Not enough... not enough... not enough...
I know how desperately we want our children to grow up FREE of those limiting beliefs and mindsets.
And so we tell our kids to love themselves and that they are beautiful and perfect and enough. We speak life and encouragement into them.
The struggle though is not about us not telling our kids good things, or not affirming them. The struggle is what we are saying to and believing about ourselves.
We want to give our kids something more. Something balanced and beautiful.
But dear, dear woman: we cannot give to others what we don’t have ourselves.
Cringe. Know my heart and know that this is not about shaming and blaming. Because girl, I HAVE BEEN THERE. Sometimes I still go back to that place.
The feeling of desperation and helplessness. The feeling of shame because we don’t measure up to the unachievable standards we have set for ourselves. Standards based in perfectionism, fear, anger, and unworthiness. Standards that are reinforced by our culture. Impossible and unrealistic standards.
These beliefs are deeply imbedded in our minds because they have been developed over YEARS of conditioning. We have heard these messages directly or indirectly since childhood. To think that we can transform our beliefs in a matter of weeks or even months is just not realistic.
But just as our minds have believed what we’ve been told for decades, we can change what our minds believe by telling it a different story. A new story about who we truly are.
We must begin replacing that old story- those shame based, limiting beliefs- with a new story. One with a foundation based on our inherent worth and sense of self. The true selves that God created us to be.
Ok so how do we do that? Hang with me for a second. I know this may sound wierd and feel uncomfortable but try it consistently for a few weeks and observe how helpful it is.
Start speaking specific, life giving words to yourself. Out loud. Start by getting 3-5 sticky notes and writing one phrase on each of them. Put them in places around your house that you frequent and every time you see them, say them out loud.
What things would your best friend say to you to affirm your importance and worth? Things that you might not even really believe? Who does God say you are that you might not believe? Write those things down. And say them. I cannot emphasize enough how fundamental this is to changing your mindset. Your brain NEEDS to hear YOUR VOICE tell yourself these things!!!
The changes begin when we take action. We can see small shifts each day and week that we practice. And as we continue, over the months and years, we gradually transform our minds to see ourselves from a place of appreciation, acceptance, and worthiness for who we are as women- the daughters of God.
Our children see this happening. They see and hear the words we speak to ourselves. They internalize those messages- be it positive or negative- and those beliefs become their truth.
This is not to place blame and pressure, but to help you develop awareness as to the gravity of the kinds of stories we tell ourselves.
Start now. If you say 2-3 things to yourself 1-2 days this week, it’s progress!!! Take the small wins. Continue to develop consistency. You WILL see changes. Your mind will change. Your relationships will change. Your life will change. Because YOU chose to be brave and take action.