Isn’t it crazy to think of the emotional roller coaster we can put ourselves through when something we are working on doesn’t go as expected? Whether it’s due to an unintentional blunder, variables outside our control or maybe just a plain old mistake on our end–do you love yourself and move on or out of fear do you move into self-attack mode?
Well friends, some food for thought— How we meet ourselves when we make mistakes not only feeds our self-esteem but also empowers those around us to potentially do the same.
Over the years, I’ve learned that we are our harshest critics, and can hold an emotional grudge against ourselves longer than any rival. When I say an emotional grudge, I mean we have the ability to beat ourselves over the head with things like, “what was I thinking”, “how could I let that happen”, “I knew I couldn’t do it”, “I should have tried harder”. If left unattended…these thoughts can get ugly.
Flipping the Script
So in recent years I’ve been proactively trying to flip the script.
What would you say to a co-worker who’s upset because a presentation didn’t go as planned at work, a friend who’s embarrassed because of a meal she prepared was a flop or to an aunt who’s disheartened because the scale is not moving in the direction that she hoped it would be moving in?
Would you be judge-y?
Would you be compassionate?
Would you help them find the silver lining?
So, why not do all of that + more for ourselves?
I’m not sure where our inner harsh critic comes from, but I’m beginning to think it’s a self-defense mechanism–maybe if we put ourselves down before anyone else does, it’ll be easier to take if someone says something, holds it against us or judges us for it. Basically, out of fear, we’ll poke a hole in our self-esteem before someone else does.
Unfortunately, the holes we poke are usually much deeper and much more often…therefore making us that much more vulnerable when someone does take a jab at us.
Making a mistake and taking responsibility for it not only takes a lot of humility and courage, but I think is more effective when we can do it with self-love…because after all, these incidents are just a reminder that we are all human.
So friends, instead of meeting ourselves with criticism, judgement and negativity in situations that can already be hard, wouldn’t it be great if we each made a conscious choice to meet ourselves, wherever we are— with love, compassion and kindness like we would a friend, a sister or co-worker. That way, we can grow from these experiences; and as our self-esteem, self-acceptance and self-love become stronger, we empower those around us to do the same.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, so leave a comment below!
Lots of love,