If I spoke to the people in my life the way the voice in my head talks to me I would surely be friendless! It came as a real “aha” moment this morning while working with my personal coach, that I am just downright mean to myself. I suddenly began to understand why it is that I am unable to achieve certain seemingly simple things in my life… I fail to action so that the nasty little voice in me can shame and guilt me for NOT achieving something as “easy” as going to the gym after a 12-hour working day. It’s the same voice that chatters away to me when I am unable to resist the chocolate cake, but is oh so quiet when I do succeed in a myriad of other things during the day or the week. It sits silently by when I receive praise, waiting to pounce at me with some derogatory afterthought as to how I could have done better.
It’s not a kind and loving voice, it’s harsh and critical, echoing failures, but never sharing triumph. I thought about where it was born while I was working through my realisation this morning, and came to the conclusion that I may never know, but it is time to do something about it. The most humbling part of the experience was not that the voice was there, but that I’d recognised it so often in my coaching clients, yet failed to hear it for what it was in me…Limiting in its beliefs, stagnant in its mindset and cruel in its choice of language.
It’s the part of me that never truly celebrates all the wonderful things I have achieved, but rather looks for the cracks. It slides through my mind like volcanic lava, burning the positive thoughts to ashes and leaving nothing but destructive ideas and feelings in its path. It’s just always been there…the never good enough in me. It doesn’t speak up when I am feeling grounded and empowered, but waits for a moment of uncertainty when it can lash out with its vicious self-deprecations and taunts. So although there is a certain curiosity as to where it came from, I am choosing to focus on “retraining” my voice. Sending it out into the world of gratitudes, teaching it to be softer, kinder and more self-loving.
Because the sudden and profound awareness that it exists and the nastiness of its existence has been a dramatic shift for me today. I suddenly feel a little more deserving of personally affirming myself. Because after compliments do come my way, the voice shrieks…and it’s not a display of humility but an inability to be able to practice humility. There are plenty of areas of life that I have succeeded. The mere fact that I have been in recovery for this long surely deserves to be celebrated. My few, but wonderful friends speak of many years of love and connection and deserve to be heard. Living courageously is where I want to be moving forward, my own voice my biggest fan. The one that is as fiercely loving and compassionate with me as I am with others…
I feel that through this deepened understanding of self today I have truly stepped into a new dimension of myself and it’s a place I want to slowly explore. Building on the tools and resources learned to this point, shaping the future of my life with a gentler set of words and ideas. Rather than the river of fire that burns and destroys, I want the recesses of my mind and soul to be a gently running stream of mindfulness and conscious awareness. Ever present in my own set of positive beliefs and candid encouragement, I suddenly understand the real work that lies ahead of me and I feel blessed, grateful and truly grounded. Tonight the soft whispers that drift through my mind are light and ethereal, like mischievous nymphs seeking adventure, and their gentle laughter soothes my soul. Tonight I feel as though I have started to find my way in the world, with nothing but the truth of who I really am to guide me, and I feel at peace.