We can’t always rely on approval from others. We need to encourage ourselves.
Did you grow up in a home where you were encouraged every day? If so, that is awesome. Most of us did not spend our days hearing positive and uplifting statements. Your parents did their best and may have been loving, but didn’t have the tools to motivate and inspire their children.
Studies suggest we need as many as eight positive statements for every one negative. It is highly unlikely that this is what you experience daily. Not only do others tend to be chicken little, but we are also our worst enemies when it comes to positive talk and thoughts.
If you need to be encouraged far more than discouraged, don’t leave it up to other people who are fighting their own battles or living with a Beast.
Be responsible for your optimism by learning how you can empower yourself. Here are four ways to encourage yourself:
1. Replace your thoughts. Whenever a negative thought about yourself comes to mind, replace it immediately with a positive, and speak that new thought out loud. There is power in the spoken word. (See this post on Kicking the Negative Attitude Habit for further reinforcement).
2. Correct your words. When those self-defeating thoughts come flying out of your mouth, follow them up with an uplifting declaration.
3. Get in front of the mirror. Each morning, get in front of the mirror, and start telling the beautiful person staring back at you why they are so amazing. Speak out loud and with passion as if you were talking to the most valuable person in the world (which should be you).
4. Accept compliments. We tend to discount compliments; this is especially true for women. Consider that these are precious gifts you are throwing back into the giver’s face. My friend, Adrien, is on the autism spectrum and is very matter-of-fact. When I tell him he is looking good, Adrien responds with,
Be like Adrien and be honored by the kind words. Take them in and start believing them.
Do not be afraid to love and value yourself, and to allow others to know that you do. Why not start today? Make this the day you begin encouraging yourself using these four ideas. Do it multiple times a day, and your self-confidence and value will increase by multiples.
Your Story Matters…Live it, Courageously.