We all have that inner voice that whispers “Keep going” when the going gets tough. Unfortunately, for some of us, this voice also whispers horrible things to us throughout the day. I’m sure you’ve heard it before. It is that voice that tells you “ugly” when you look at the mirror. It is that voice that tells you “you’re a failure” when you make a mistake. We all have it, and it abuses you in different ways, at different levels, during different circumstances.
This Inner Abusive Voice keeps us depressed and anxious. And who wouldn’t? If you were constantly told that you’re ugly, fat, a failure, and/or unlovable, wouldn’t you feel sad? Yet, most of us have an inner abusive voice that is ready to constantly put us down.
I don’t have an answer as to how to silence these inner voices, as I am working on that in therapy, but I do have a little bit of an insight.
If Jesus is able to love us with all He is, and with his infinite compassion, why can’t we try to imitate him and love ourselves with such infinite love? He did tell us to love one another as He has loved us. It was His commandment. We know we can’t love others if we don’t love ourselves, so why not start by loving ourselves a little more, so we can love our neighbor a little more, more Christlike?
We can start by having compassion for ourselves. Maybe next time you make a mistake and you hear that snarl of your inner abusive voice saying you’re a failure, show yourself some compassion and correct that voice. “I am not a failure, I am only human, and, as such, prone to mistakes. Nobody is perfect, and neither am I.” Maybe, next time that little voice is saying that you are ugly, you can correct it and say, “I am beautiful as I am, for I am made to the image and liking of God.”
These corrections are actually much better than the abusive alternative! Maybe something to work on…