I remember the massive light bulb moment when it occurred. I was casually talking with a client and it hit me! I have been the subject of manipulation and shaming in my life. And each and every time people attempt to use these tactics on me the result is exactly the same: I shut down. Therefore, anyone with a good sense of cause and effect would understand shaming and manipulating me is not an effective motivator. And yet...
I was living with this horribly abusive person. This individual was always pushing me, demanding more, degrading any little thing I did, always criticizing my body, and putting me down for having limitations. This person even condemned me for needing anything more than three hours of sleep!In short, this person was an absolute monster to live with. Let me just give you some examples: recently I came down with pneumonia, this person thought I was just being lazy and feeling sorry for myself; anytime I clean my house, this person criticizes the imperfections; every time I buy clothes, this person is constantly complaining about the size or the price of the clothing. I don't deserve to live like this right? I don't need to be constantly scrutinized, right?
I remember the day it all came to a head. I was just casually talking to a client and it hit me: I am not motivating myself by the way I treat me! I suffer from a little defiance issue, so if anything I'm doing the exact opposite! Yes, the "person" and "individual" I referred to is totally ME! After all, I would never let anyone else abuse me in such a derogatory manner, would I? I made the decision to evict my abuser in that moment and time!
The following are the ways in which I successfully evicted my abuser from my life. I no longer engage in the destructive dialogue that in the past was my moment-by-moment conversation:
1. Filtering my thoughts: I literally ran every thought I had through the filter "is that what I want?" This may seem like a no brainer, but it actually becomes a task when every thought you encounter about yourself is negative. When the opposite was no (because clearly I didn't want to be"so fat that no clothing would ever fit me") I replaced my thoughts with the positive opposite.
2. Meditation: I am a firm believer in all of the science that talks about the health benefits of meditation. I have honed meditation down to under two minutes and as such have reaped tons of benefits!
3. Gratitude: This has always been a game changer for me.No matter how wonderful or how terrible my experience in life, I aim to practice gratitude. This is partially due to gratitude being the highest vibrational experience, but it's also because it's a complete game changer for me.
4. Pay attention: I changed the recorder in my head from constantly replaying every mistake I made, to focusing on every compliment I was given. If it was a day that I wasn't given a direct compliment, then I focused on replaying every smile I received or gave.
5. Get out of my own head: This is one of my favorite go to's. Any time I suspect I'm spending too much time on me, or my issues, I reach out to someone else. I will call someone, send them and instant message, or even text them. I make the commitment at the beginning of the conversation that we will only be talking about them.
6. Practice Saying Thank You: I can't tell you how many thousands of compliments I have received and I quickly and instantly dismissed every one of them. I know this to be factual, because my husband actually talked to me one time about how hurtful my responses were.My desire and goal is to never cause anyone else any harm.
7. Hypnosis: I had so much subconscious mind programming that said how I spoke to myself and treated myself was the correct way to do it. I could've spent decades in therapy, but instead decided to get to the root of the issue using hypnosis.It's the fastest way to change the subconscious mind programming.
8. Mirror Work: Many years ago, I used to encourage my clients to do the "I'm sorry, forgive me, I love you, Thank you" in the mirror. But I made a decision to take that to the next realm. Every day I looked in the mirror and told myself 25 to 30 positive things about my body, about my life, and about my love for myself.
9. Positive Journaling: I spent a lifetime putting negative, horrible and ugly things after the words, "I am." I made the decision to stop doing that and to begin creating the life inside of myself that I desired.I knew fully that I was going to get out of this, what I put into it. I decided to put into myself love, peace, joy, hope and laughter.
10. Fake it Until you Make it: This is a philosophy I was taught well over 19 years ago, and it still holds true today. If I acted as if I loved myself, then how long would it be until I absolutely madly and passionately loved myself? Research shows that it will be less than 31 days when it becomes a habit. Isn't that what I want, after all? I want to cultivate healthy, positive, supportive and loving habits. I believe we all do.
Jenn Bovee, LCSW is a spiritual life coach and psychotherapist. She offers distance sessions to people all over the world. To learn more about her, simply go here:www.JennBoveeLCSW.com