Lots of us have voices from the past that are haranguing us, every day, about how we’re not good enough.
Sometimes they speak to us clearly, as in, we hear actual voices.
Sometimes it’s more of a feeling or a vibe.
But the message is consistent: those voices from the past tell us we ARE our “worst” qualities.
Those voices from the past tell us we ARE our failures or mistakes.
Those voices from the past tell us we ARE what happened to us.
Very often the voices in our head tell us that we’re only worth the value or pleasure we bring to other people— that if we’re not making someone else feel good or serving a purpose for them, than OUR lives are meaningless. That our value runs out when we’re no longer attractive or useful to someone else.
It’s not true.
It may FEEL true. It may feel VERY true. It may feel so true that me disputing it right now may feel like I’m trying to “trick” you just to make you feel better.
But those voices in our heads that try to convince us we are objects to be used and discarded are NOT telling you the truth.
Why do we have those voices in our head?
Most often it’s the result of early, consistent programming.
Maybe we were abused or neglected at home. Maybe we were bullied at school. Maybe we experienced physical or sexual abuse. Maybe we simply didn’t get the support and guidance we needed to form a strong, stable sense of ourselves.
What we need to remember is, our head doesn’t play those “greatest hits” because they are TRUE.
Our head plays and replays and replays our programming and conditioning.
It’s NOT evidence that we ARE as bad and unworthy and hopeless and helpless as we FEEL.
It’s evidence that those messages were repeated and reinforced over a long period of time.
Very often we will have experiences later in life that seem to confirm our worst fears and beliefs about ourselves.
We’ll have a painful experience, we’ll make a mistake, we’ll fail at something, and we’ll think, well, this just CONFIRMS all that bad stuff I always THOUGHT about myself, doesn’t it?
Humans make mistakes. We fail. We experience pain. The “best” human being you know, the most successful, the most moral, the nicest person you can imagine right now, has had those human experiences.
We don’t experience pain because we are “bad.” We don’t make mistakes because we are unworthy.
Those things happen because we are human.
To be human is to be imperfect.
But to be imperfect is NOT to be “unworthy.”
You, sitting there, reading this, are JUST as “worthy” of feeling good as anyone who has ever existed on this planet.
You do not have to “earn” the right to be free from pain or fear.
Because you have experienced pain in your life doesn’t mean you “deserved” it. The most amazing (and the LEAST amazing) people on the planet experience pain.
The voices in your head are not an infallible guide to truth.
They are echoes of things you were told and made to believe.
When we grow up believing we are unworthy or hard to love, the voices in our head will work overtime to reinforce those beliefs. They will selectively point to certain memories and reactions and events and be like “SEE? I TOLD YOU!”
Remember: it’s propaganda.
It’s fake news.
Even if it FEELS real, all it is is OLD patterns.
Don’t mistake what is familiar for what is true.