Getting Rid of Negative Self-Talk
Our lives are always usable by God. We need not always be effective, but only transparent and vulnerable. - Richard Rohr
I was feeling sorry for myself the other day about something or another, and I started talking poorly to myself about myself.
I don't mean that I was actually talking to myself out loud (although there are times for that, too), but I was "saying things" about me in my head--things that were untrue and hurtful.
And in those moments when I'm feeling sorry for myself, it can feel like more than just a whisper or a casual comment, it can feel like there's a Greek chorus in my noggin reeling off litanies of evidence to remind me of how truly inept I am at life.
I hope I don't offend anyone with what I am about to say next, but there's no better way to put it. I had a therapist tell me once that the Greek chorus in my head was called an I.B.S.C. which is short for "Itty-Bitty-S****y-Committee."
Some of you have been waiting your whole life for a way to refer to your own Greek chorus. You're welcome.
I've come to realize that most of the negative choruses from my I.B.S.C. tend to have a familiar theme: Not Good Enough. It's not particular cheery to hear what the Committee has to share on the subject, to be honest. And if I let them, the I.B.S.C. can really wreck my day.
Maybe your I.B.S.C. has a different kind of theme, but you get the picture.
The hard truth is, we can make a habit out of listening to the I.B.S.C. too much, and then those choruses can become the soundtracks of our lives. In essence, we can definitely choose to be guided by negative self-talk rather than the truth about ourselves.
So what is true about us?
Only that we are beloved, precious and amazing in the eyes of God. So much so, that God gave up everything to become one of us for the purposes of saving all of us.
This news should send shockwaves through us as we step further into the season of Advent--shockwaves big enough to jar us loose from negative self-talk and the bad habits that accompany it.
To that end, I also urge you to remember these life-changing words from renowned theologian Walter Brueggeman, who writes about letting go of the negative and staying focused on what's good, true and beautiful during this season of expectation:
Decrease what is old and habitual and destructive in your life so that the new life-giving power of Jesus may grow large with you.And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.