“I am worthy of receiving all the good that God has so generously provided!” I repeated the phrase over and over again. Each time I said it, the rawness of my emotions stunned me. Each confession brought on new tears as years of feeling unworthy of the “good things” in life were agitated by the power of my own words. Initially choking on “I am worthy,” I found myself wanting to believe I was. Supported by my peers who repeated my affirmation back to me, I became open to the idea that maybe… just maybe I was.
I was at a speakers’ conference and the session was aimed at addressing public speaking fears. I was skeptical when they broke us off into groups for the “reprogramming” exercise. In fact, you may be too as you read this. I didn’t realize that my negative self-talk had programmed me to question my value in ALL situations. I believed God was a giver of good things, but I didn’t think I deserved them. Thoughts of unworthiness derailed me daily.
The reprogramming exercise did have an effect. I became more conscious of my head chatter and began diligently choosing to speak the words that affirmed my strengths and values. Because I wanted more out of life, I could no longer blindly accept the words and thoughts that took me away from the life I wanted to live.
We must address our negative self-talk by confronting the following:
1. Feeling Rejected: We all love belonging. So it hurts when the people or things we want, don’t want us. But we must learn to weaken rejection’s sting by recognizing that it only has the power and meaning that we assign to it. Rejection should not be interpreted as a measure of our personal value. Instead, it should be viewed as a sign that something “more” or something “better” for us is coming. Solution—Recognize that rejection only gets its power by the value we give it—don’t allow it to diminish your worth!
2. Complaining: We complain because we feel as if we are being treated unfairly or made to suffer something we shouldn’t. You can’t spend too much time complaining without eventually believing that you are a victim. To accept a victim mentality is to give away your power! Solution—Practice gratitude. It will move you into your place of power. A heart full of thanksgiving leads to a mind filled with possibility—one that is strong enough to take the risks that your dreams require.
3. Downplaying Our Strengths: As adults, we rarely give ourselves the affirmation and encouragement we need. Most people downplay their strengths trying not to be perceived as arrogant. There’s a lot to be learned from children. My little niece expects praise for every step and fall she makes. Solution—You don’t have to be arrogant—but practice tooting your horn when the right opportunities present themselves. Healthy self-worth requires that you acknowledge your strengths. Get comfortable verbally affirming your value.
Do the work! Select the area where you need reprogramming the most. Manage your self-talk by developing a list of 15-20 positive affirmations. Make a recording of them. Listen to the recording in the morning and just before going to bed. To jump start your recording, practice the affirmation: “I am worthy of receiving all the good that God has so generously provided!”
Recently named the “North America’s Next Greatest Speaker” by eWomenNetwork, Felicia T. Scott is a Certified Empowerment Coach™ who empowers her clients to turn their Worth into Wealth as she partners with them to DISCOVER their WORTH, DO the WORK and DEFINE their WEALTH. Follow her on Twitter for updates regarding her newly released seminar THRIVE! 7 Strategies for Extraordinary Living DVD and CD.