A petite, light-skinned Jamaican woman sits with her husband in a crowded beachside ice cream shop in Miami. Although she doesn’t speak loudly or occupy much space in the room, people notice her.
Her hair is long, flowing and black like a windy night. Her lips are soft and red like rose petals. Her curves are subtle, yet they dip and bend in all the right places. Her skin is smooth, brown, maple cream. And her clothes are modest, accentuating everything, while exposing nothing at all.
She knows why they’re looking at her. “It’s because I’m not white,” she says. “It’s because we’re an interracial couple and they don’t understand why you’re with me.”
Her husband groans and closes his eyes. There’s nothing he can say. They’ve already had this conversation a hundred times before. He threads his fingers through his hair in frustration and watches as his chocolate ice cream begins to melt.
Three tables over, two Latino college kids eat their ice cream cones and check out “the scene.” As usual, they’re not impressed. The women around here are too old, too young, too overweight, or…, “Wow, look at her,” the pimple-faced one says as he nods his head towards the Jamaican woman.
The prematurely balding one turns around to look. “Oh yeah, she must be a model,” he replies. “She’s way out of our league, bud…”
“I don’t think I should have to explain why this is so painful for me,” the Jamaican woman continues. “The media portrays white, blonde females as the essence of beauty and perfection. My color is simply a genetic defect.”
A chubby Asian girl, about 12-years-old, naively stares at the Jamaican woman while sipping a root beer float. Small tears stream down her face. “Daddy, why can’t I be as pretty as her?” she asks her father.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re physically faithful to me,” the Jamaican woman says to her husband. “Because with all these influences surrounding you, you’re probably internalizing your deep desires for a genetically endowed female companion. And it kills me! Don’t you understand?”
“Please honey… Are you ready to go home?” her husband replies softly. She hasn’t taken a single bite of her brownie sundae and all of the ice cream has already melted. She sighs and stands up, weakly.
Three well-dressed white women in their early 30’s talk cheerfully and sip diet cokes at a table near the door. They were all childhood friends at a local orphanage. When they were eventually placed in different foster homes, they lost contact with each other. This special reunion is their first time together in almost twenty years.
“Did you see those three women by the door?” the Jamaican woman asks her husband as they walk to their car. “Wealthy white women like that don’t even appreciate how easy their life has been.”
Widespread Feelings of Inadequacy
It might seem a bit ironic, or perhaps even downright bold, that a white man would write a story about a beautiful Jamaican woman who is heartbroken and tormented inside by her self-image. But it’s really not that ironic or bold at all. That Jamaican woman is a dear friend of mine, and she asked me to share a piece of her story with you today. Last night she called me in tears and opened up about how she desperately struggles with her inner demons.
She told me she was unfairly judged and disrespected in the distant past, and that she’s now allowing those past experiences to haunt her daily. “I’ve lost my inner compass,” she said. “I hold on tightly to the shallow opinions of timeworn characters in my past that don’t deserve any piece of me. And I’ve let their judgments become my own. More often than not, I am the one judging myself these days. This is how I think. This is how I live—in a constant mental state of inadequacy. I am now my own worst enemy! And it’s driving me, and my husband, crazy!” And then, over the course of nearly two hours, through intermittent moments of silence and sobbing, she described that heartbreaking scene in the ice cream shop.
Now, there are admittedly many ways to dissect my friend’s story, but I want you to think for a moment about how her feelings of inadequacy relate to you and your life.
Truth be told, all of us, to a greater or lesser extent, suffer in precisely the way my friend does. There isn’t a person among us who doesn’t have insecurities—some of us are just better at coping with them, or perhaps hiding them.
We worry about what other people think of us. We worry about our appearance. We worry if she’ll like us. We worry if he likes that other woman. We worry that we’re not accomplishing all that we should be. We worry that we’ll fall flat on our faces. We worry that we’re not enough just the way we are. And of course, we worry about all those foolish, thoughtless things someone once said about us.
And social media—with its culture of getting us to seek constant approval with virtual likes and hearts—with its endless highlight reel of perfect bodies and epic travels—it only intensifies the problem.
Think about it. How often has a lack of self-confidence, or a feeling of inadequacy, stopped you or someone you love?
I would guess that, for many of us, feelings of inadequacy have stopped us from:
- Stepping into new social situations where we might make new friends, new professional connections, or perhaps even meet the love of our lives
- Being confident when we’re communicating with people
- Changing jobs, starting a business, writing a book, practicing our art, or putting our good ideas out into the world
- Sticking to healthy daily rituals, like eating well and exercising, because we failed in the past (proof that it can’t be done, right?)
- Learning something new and amazing, like a new hobby or skill, because there’s a learning curve and we might humiliate ourselves
I’ve experienced all of that and then some. In fact, at an early age, when I was just a freshman in high school and struggling to find my way, someone anonymously slipped a note into my locker one afternoon. It said, “Don’t let them get inside your head. You’re not boring, nerdy or weird. You’re complex, creative and far too sharp for their small words. And for the record, you are also infinitely more attractive than you give yourself credit for.” Although I never discovered who wrote the note, I still have it sitting in my desk drawer to this day, and I read it sometimes when I need a reminder.
Last night I did my best to covey a similar reminder to my friend. But she wanted to know more…
“How do I actually overcome my insecurities?” she asked. “How do I finally become OK with myself again?”
The answer I gave was somewhat simple, but far from easy…
Practice Thinking Better About Yourself
It’s perhaps the hardest thing we all need to do for ourselves.
We need to NOT be our own worst enemies when it comes to self-image.
But that takes practice. Lots of it…
When it comes to feeling better about ourselves, and our place in the world, the biggest and most complex obstacle we have to overcome is our mind. If we can overcome that, we can overcome almost anything life throws at us.
The key is in accepting the fact that while we can’t control exactly what happens in life, we CAN control how we respond to it all. And in our response is our power to grow and move forward.
One of our first Getting Back to Happy students, who graduated with a PhD last year from one of the most prestigious universities in our country, is now an executive for one of the world’s fastest growing tech companies. Throughout grade school and high school she desperately wrestled with a form of dyslexia that made reading and writing a monumental challenge. She spent kindergarten through 12th grade in language-based ESE classes. And during a parent-teacher conference when she was in 9th grade, one of her ESE teachers informed her parents that it was extremely unlikely she would ever receive a high school diploma.
So how did she do it? How did she push herself to rise up and overcome the odds? “A mindset shift,” she confirmed with me when I interviewed her recently for a side project Angel and I are working on. “The mindset tools you and Angel set me up with, and held me accountable to, changed everything! I literally learned to tell myself that the naysayers were wrong about me. And I learned to stop naysaying myself too. I changed my mental story—my mental movie—and I started telling myself exactly what I needed to hear, every single day, to move my life forward.”
Ready to move your life forward too?
While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all way of changing your “mental movie”—because, to an extent, we all have unique stories and past experiences—there are some foundational steps Angel and I often guide our course students and coaching clients through:
- Bring awareness to the story you’re telling yourself, about yourself. — You have a story about yourself (or perhaps a series of them) that you recite to yourself daily. This is your mental movie, and it’s a feature film that plays on repeat in your mind. Your movie is about who you are: you have a chubby tummy, your skin is too dark, you aren’t smart, you aren’t lovable… you aren’t good enough. Start to pay attention when your movie plays—when you feel anxiety about being who you are—because it affects everything you do. Realize that this movie isn’t real, it isn’t true, and it isn’t you. It’s just a train of thought that can be stopped—a script that can be rewritten.
- Rewrite the script (edit the storyline of your mental movie). — Your new script will replace that played-out one that keeps running in your cerebral theater. And this time you will consciously craft it. Start with the fact that you are a good person who is learning and working on getting better. Then ask people who love you to tell you why you’re lovable. And ask people who respect you to tell you why they do. Use their stories as scenes in your new movie script. Then fill in the blanks with recent moments and outcomes in your life that you are grateful for. Try to focus on the things you don’t celebrate enough, and the things you don’t give yourself enough credit for.
- Practice your new lines. — Learn to recognize the worn-out flicker of your old movie starting up, and then stop it. Seriously! Whenever you catch yourself reciting lines from your old script (“My arms are flabby…”), flip the script and replace those lines with lines from your new movie script. This takes lots of practice, but it’s worth it. Just keep practicing, and forgiving yourself for making mistakes along the way.
- Deflect external negativity by taking it less personally. — Various kinds of external negativity will attempt to distract you from your new script—comments from family, social media posts… lots of things people say and do. When you sense negativity coming at you, learn to deflect it. Give it a small push back with a thought like, “That remark is not really about me, it’s about you.” Remember that all people have emotional issues they’re dealing with (just like you), and it makes them defiant, rude, and thoughtless sometimes. They are doing the best they can, or they’re not even aware of their issues. In any case, you can learn not to interpret their behaviors as personal attacks, and instead see them as non-personal encounters (like a dog barking in the distance, or a bumblebee buzzing by) that you can either respond to gracefully, or not respond to at all.
And if you need a little extra assistance with re-scripting your mental movie in the heat of the moment, you can use the simple phrase “The story I’m telling myself…” as a prefix to any self-deprecating thought. Here’s how it works…
Perhaps someone you just met didn’t call you when they said they would, and now you’re thinking, “They forgot about me because I’m not good enough for them.” When you catch yourself feeling this way, use the phrase:
“The story I’m telling myself is that they didn’t call me simply because I’m not good enough for them.”
Then ask yourself:
- Can I be ABSOLUTELY certain this story is true?
- How do I feel and behave when I tell myself this story?
- What’s one other (more positive) possibility that might also be true?
Give yourself the space to think it through carefully. Mull it over, mindfully.
On the average day, I bet your answer to question #1 is “no,” and your answer to question #2 is “not very good.” And I hope question #3 gives you the perspective you need to write a better script.
Closing Thoughts… On Creating Your Reality
In closing, let me lighten the mood and leave you with this…
A puppy thinks: “Hey, these people I live with feed me, love me, provide me with a warm, dry home, pet me and take good care of me…
… THEY MUST BE GODS!”
A kitten thinks: “Hey, these people I live with feed me, love me, provide me with a warm, dry home, pet me and take good care of me…
… I MUST BE A GOD!”
Same situation, different thinking.
To a great extent, we make our life stories by our thoughts.
The reality we ultimately live is a process of our daily thinking.
And when we think better about ourselves, we live better in spite of ourselves.
We would love to hear from YOU.
What’s a story (or mental movie) you often recite to yourself that hurts you more than it helps?
Any other thoughts or stories to share?
Please leave a reply below.
Also, if you haven’t done so already, be sure to sign-up for our free newsletter to receive new articles like this in your inbox each week.
When I checked my email 10 minutes ago, I had no clue I was in for this read. Wow!
Such heartfelt, thoughtful story to illustrate the point that we are often our worst enemies and critics. The self-image and skin color thing is a MASSIVE issue in the black community, and in other minority communities too. The magnitude of the problem is truly far more widespread than we’d like to admit. And it’s the perfect model of what happens when we are overly concerned about what we think people might think about us. I will spare the details here though.
In any case, I think this article as a whole an important reminder that most people are self-absorbed in their own issues and aren’t going to remember or even notice your “flaws,” which most of the time aren’t even there.
Truly a solid post, Marc!
Also, I’m going to share this with my daughter, and hopefully we can work through your actionable suggestions here together. This won’t be the first time either–we actually enrolled in your getting to happy course together last year, and implemented many of your suggested daily rituals, and held ourselves accountable to them. And we’ve both seen progress and have had many positive discussions about it. Just thought I’d let you know.
This is what I’m going through, right now. Not feeling good enough! And caring what others think is a big One. What I do is just say to myself, its actually, none of my business what others think. And being aware these thoughts is big for me. This was such a good reading for me this morning. A very good start of my day. Thank You
Also I would say what Nick said is So close to my Story. and I thank him for sharing!
The story that keeps playing in my mind is that I am not capable to change the course of my life. Its either too late or its out of my control. I keep trying different methods that I read about on the net and that sound close to my heart, it seems that change is possible but then I fall back into the “old” thought pattern. It bothers me so much!
But thanks for your article, its so clear and profound.
S/ Toronto, ON
Sharmila Jappie says
Sorina it is never too late to change your perspective on anything. Every moment you have breath is an opportunity for goodness and happiness. Going back to old mindset isn’t a train smash, because you do have an opportunity afterwards to reset your path. Just forgive yourself for going back. But constantly tell yourself what you deserve and strive for it. Change comes in baby steps. It doesn’t happen overnight. It takes work and desire to change. Value the little things you do to change . never steer off the path because of challenges. Each one of us is unique and our set of challenges is unique to us, andbour recovery path is unique to us. Don’t give up and you will get there, you will get to happiness. Because happiness is your state of mind. Contentment is your state of mind. Success is your state of mind. Just as failure is your state of mind. Being stuck in the past is your state of mind. It is all your choice. Only yours. You need to choose every moment of every day that you deserve change and then go for it one tiny step at a time, one tiny ritual at a time. Sometimes we fall into our old thought process. Do not let it overcome you. Acknowledge that you have faultered, forgive yourself , picture what you want and continue on the path to healing. The past is sometimes deep within us, comfortable for us . change is often challenging, taking us out of our comfort zones. But in the remembrance of what we desire for ourselves and how much hurt the past has caused us we can propel ourselves to a better life, a happier life a more fulfilling life. Don’t give up. Many of us have been there , are there where you are. It is normal, we are human . see your happiness in the moments that you can and strive for it. I believe that you deserve happiness. Start believing in yourself. You deserve it. You can change every moment now through your outlook. You can choose goodness today, tomorrow and every moment after. Happiness lies only in your hands by your choice. By the will of God.
Marc Chernoff says
Kelly, it’s been a pleasure working with you and your daughter. And thank you for sharing your sentiment here.
Sharmila, I agree. 100%! Thank you for these words.
Nick Davidson says
Such a thought provoking opening story. It really made me think. And the simple strategy of re-writing our mental movies also struck a chord with me. That phrase and questions you’ve provided will certainly change my thinking and spare me some pain in those moments when I tend to dump on myself. Too often I take things personally and feel self-conscious. For example, if my girlfriend pulls away from me, or if I feel like a kiss I gave her isn’t reciprocated, I tend to feel insecure and unneeded. In the heat of the moment, the story I tell myself is that I’m not enough, when in fact she’s just dealing with her own issues–her own bad mood and insecurities.
Thanks, as always.
Oh, and are you two working on a new book? I thought I read somewhere that you were. I have your 1000 Little Things book and I love it. And I’d love to be one of the first to get my hands on the new one too.
Just want to thank You for sharing what you did this morning. It is So close to my story.
Marc Chernoff says
Thank you for sharing a piece of your story, Nick. I’m glad this post resonates. 🙂
And yes, we are writing a new book. It will be out next Spring. Make sure you’re on our email list and we’ll update you on our progress soon.
I agree with the above comments–such a poignant story that perfectly illustrates the breadth and power of perception.
And I’m just as guilty as anyone else. I often catch myself telling myself that I’m not enough for certain people and opportunities.
Truly, we all need to keep in mind that everything we experience is simply a matter of perception. With that life lesson firmly planted in our minds, and with practice, it becomes relatively easy to change our perceptions, change our self-talk, change our mental movies, and ultimately change our experiences.
Cheers, M&A! And I look forward to seeing you at your seminar in San Diego next Feb.
Marc Chernoff says
We’re looking forward to seeing you in San Diego too, Victoria. 🙂
I really needed to read something that hit home the way this did. For a long time I have been battling with my inner demons much like your friend. Comparing myself to others, wishing I was stunning like them, more sociable, popular and wanted. I have been feeling inadequate for so long, craving some sort of validation from outsiders. Reading this has cleared my perception. Thank you.
Marc Chernoff says
I’m so glad it resonated.
Marylyn Bull says
Oh thank you for this read it all makes sense I WAS my own worst enemy but from this moment on I AM going to change and make my new movie I am 65 on the 26th October and have wasted a lot of time but boy am I gonna make up for it
Marc Chernoff says
Happy early birthday, Marylyn. 🙂
I was called ‘the ugly duckling’ in my family. The last of four, one prince, and two beautiful princesses ahead of me, I became less social and lost myself in nature growing up (a good thing). I could never accept compliments later in life when I somehow ‘transformed’. I was definitely insecure!
Then I had kids (yes, I was confident enough to get married), and everything changed. Well, not everything. I was still insecure, but I started to feel good about myself. It was the unconditional love of my children that opened a door: I had dreams that shifted my perception to my own heart. I saw my heart, a read heart-shaped diamond cut bulb, in the middle of a room with only four walls, and the walls were crumbling. That was the beginning of self compassion.
Many years later, I am better than ‘ok’. I have actively done things so that I would ‘know’ myself, including no longer colouring my hair (and I love me better this way), to posting photos of myself that are both flattering, and sometimes ‘not so much’. I found that ‘seeing myself’ as all that I am is the best way to ‘come down’ from worrying about whether I am beautiful or not, etc. I just AM now. And I love it.
The beauty of my experience is that it gave me something I could use to help others.
This article was a reminder and a refresher. It is a wonderful tool. I am about to share it with my children, who, while ahead of where I was, are ’not there yet’. Thank you.
Marc Chernoff says
You are welcome, Y. And thank you so much for sharing your story. Such a beautiful transformation of self-image. And the fact that you are doing your best to assist your children with these lessons … that just makes me smile. 🙂
Dee Barnes says
What an interesting article. This woman perceived and created an imaginary prejudice in her mind that wasn’t even happening. How very sad. She then turned and made an unfair judgement call on the other women. She assumed something about them without even knowing their stories. I wonder how many times this is happening on a daily basis. Thus racism continues to fan its flame.
I have friends in almost every race, religious belief, age group, education level, income bracket, and sexual preference. Even though we all have our insecurities, we are friends because we are kind to each other. I don’t know what others think, but when I greet someone, none of the things above are important. What I notice is the person’s response to my greeting. A smile is equally beautiful on everyone. A bad attitude looks the same on everyone as well.
When you said “Wealthy white women like that don’t even appreciate how easy their life has been.”
It literally sent chills down my spine, and brings tears to my eyes. The way our own demons can antagonize and belittle others, is just so goddamn cruel on this earth. Skin, beauty, age..all of it only exists in the egoic mind.
Thank you for sending out your emails and helping people. The more we acknowledge that we are all just souls having an experience, the better.
I subscribe to your newsletter and have been reading it for … a long while now. I also follow others, read voraciously and have my own practice and I have to say that you two do a wonderful job of making some very deep concepts extremely easy to access. Your “teaching” which are actually quite profound, are always beautifully illustrated in real-world scenarios and stories that make them easy to relate to.
THANK YOU for what you do, for inspiring and improving the well-being of so many.
I am a big fan of your work! However, this piece is dripping with the exact reason why people second guess themselves. The fat shaming undertones and stereotypes- making sure we know her curves are “subtle” and the poor little chubby Asain girl. What if she really was, god-forbid- fat?? (She “could have been a model!”Such praise!) These details reinforce exactly why people become insecure and believe that some people will value them more or less based on physical appearance.
I love y’all! I needed this! Favorite tidbit… That’s just a dog barking in the distance’! It’s not about me!!
Wow. I would have been one of those people staring at your friend. And here’s why: I have rosacea. A white woman with red blotchy, acne prone skin. I have painful laser treatments, use medication daily, and struggle with self-confidence issues due to it. When I see women of color with their beautiful skin — I’d give almost anything to have it.
We all have our demons. I have to remind myself, sometimes hourly, that what’s important is on the inside, and if someone judges me for something that I can’t fix I can’t do anything about that. I’m doing all I can, and I leave the rest. But boy, it’s hard. I’ve never had self confidence issues before in my life. But when you wear something on your face that you can’t change, it’s hard to go out into the world with confidence. People judge you by the way you look – full stop.
Trishla Tyagi says
This is what I needed exactly today! Such a therapy it was for the soul.
I am struggling with over-thinking for quite some time now. I have been reading your blogs and you guys have really helped me with your blogs.
Looking forward to your book
Usually I really without a doubt enjoy your articles. While, I do appreciate the message about “Thinking Better of Yourself”, the story as it was presented was very problematic for me. I anticipate bringing this up, is not going to be popular. I find it problematic that the message is that the way this woman’s perception is shaped is wholly her problem to correct. While I agree we should not take personally the messages barraged at us from social media, that is a survival technique for our own mental health and well being. It however, is no reason to excuse it. This article in my perception, hedge very closely to dismissing very real social issues that are inexcusable.
I appreciate this so much. Right on time for where my head is at. I know my mental chatter and negative self-talk, personal doubt is what really closes me off.
I have been divorced for a while now but in a healthy long-term relationship with a man who loves me and my daughter fully. I plague myself with the “waiting for the other shoe to drop” syndrome. I can’t figure out why I don’t feel worthy and why I can’t just enjoy this blessing without worrying that it will all crumble. I do know I waste the present moment goodness.
I need to stop the negative chain. Thank you for this message today
Thanks a lot M&A.
It’s always, always and always a pleasure to read your mails. The impacts they make in our lives can never be over-emphasised. Keep up the good work!
Jeanie Bailey says
I just read this and was almost brought to tears.. a month ago this was me, for over 2yrs, being in an abusive relationship I felt like NOTHING, I felt old ugly trapped and useless, all I had was my family and my FAITH, God was carrying me, I got away from the abuser and then the depression hit me, what now, I’m nothing but a used up ugly old lady, I’d been dreaming and praying for love but was too scared to meet anyone.. the only way it seems was online and that was terrifying, not only because of my fear of men but also rejection, having nothing to offer, just a shell of who I was, but Our Merciful God did put that dream in my heart so my faith tells me to BELIEVE, I always try to please God, without Him, what are we, the ONLY GOOD THING ABOUT ME IS THAT I AM A CHILD OF THE MOST HIGH GOD, so I kept praying, even saying Father I know love won’t come knock on my door, please guide me, my birthday was getting near and I was going to be yet another year older, living with my brother, unable to work due to disability..I kept knowing in my heart, people met before computers were invented and besides if it’s His will, it will happen when He has planned, my son took me to a dinner for my birthday, ( I didn’t want to go but I couldn’t let him down) and at the restaurant was my sister, brother and a great friend I had known for about 17mos, I was trying to be a friend because his wife of almost 40 years had went to be with God, we became great friends, and he was at my party! I never let myself hope he would ever be mine, I knew he would eventually come around and end up with a woman he’s known for years but would find happiness, guess what God blessed ME, I am his happiness! Yes my prayer was answered, I’m told every day I’m beautiful, everyday I’m worthy, everyday how blessed HE IS TO HAVE ME! I believe him, I love him and I Thank God, the moral for me, your mind can make you believe anything but reach for God because He can & will disprove those thoughts! Thank you, I hope even one person reads this and opens their hearts to Father.. it will change your life! Thanks you both?
I have been receiving your emails for a number of years and I enjoy them immensely but this one spoke to me like no other. I have been replaying the same “Lifetime” movie about myself in my head for years. I too have :held tightly to the shallow opinions of timeworn characters in my past that don’t deserve any piece of me”. They never did.
Characters who broke my nose with their fists, who held loaded guns to my head and said that I was stupid and ugly and would never make anything of my life, people who spit in my face and said I would never be good enough.
Those are the characters who appear in my movie everyday, all day. I was laid off from my job a year ago and I am still looking for a job. I have gone on countless job interviews only to be rejected over and over again which have added to the voices in my head, the voices of my past that constantly tell me I’m fat, I’m old, I have nothing of value to give to anyone. I believe that in my heart of hearts.
Reading your article today made me realize that I am the author of my own story, good or bad, and that if I want to see a new movie it’s up to me to get out of my seat, leave the theatre I have been sitting in and pick a new one.
I am my own worst enemy and I am full of demons and I have thought about ending my life almost everyday the last year because I don’t have any true purpose in my life. No job, no children, no husband or partner to lean on who will hug me and tell me it’s going to be ok. I have only myself to rely on and I need to change my mindset and your article gave me a lot to think about. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Your story makes my heart ache! All children deserve love (but this is not a given, sadly). Praying for you! I know that you are special and that you CAN succeed. I’m cheering for you and sending a hug your way :)!
Nancy, I am so sorry about your past experiences. Abuse continues to damage lives long after the abuse actually ends. Your willingness to look at your old story and work to change your mindset is incredibly encouraging. My I offer a few lines for your new story? You aren’t alone. You don’t have just yourself to lean on. You found this blog and this community. I hope you continue to reach out online or in your community to find people with which to connect.
Nancy, I’m so sorry for your pain & suffering. I pray God will tenderly speak to your heart & let you know you are made in His image, loved by Him and deliberately created for His purposes, whether you are aware of them or not.
I read the Bible & try to write down the loving verses from God to people. They are there, although I naturally see & focus on His anger & judgment and condemnation. It’s my default inner magnet to see how awful I am! It’s an unfair perspective I’m working to change.
With His help, we can do it!
Marc and Angel, thank you for a great article : )
Erik B says
Absolutely positively nailed it! Completely nailed it! Great job, Marc. I’m glad to be a part of this positive community, with like minded people who want better. Peace
I feel like you are talking about me. Since my childhood I feel insecure about my body, feel neglected and unfit in almost every aspect of life, except my studies. Start to create barrier between me and other peoples because I think they hate &belittle me. Now am 26 graduated in civil engineering, but my negative taughts keep following me. I always fear to submit my Cv to big companies and opportunities I judge before I try. I fail to overcome these feeling by reading motivational articles and books. As you said I should rewrite my inner story about myself. Thank you very much for your important and inspirational news letters.
Hey I just want to say I really appreciate this article. I’ve seen at least 6 or more counselors/therapists off and on through my life from the age of 5 to 27 (I’m 33 now) and I know they mentioned elements of doing things along these same lines before. I seem to need a lot of reminders about things to do that will help me feel better about myself and life, I’ve never really had much support (certainly not from anyone older than me in my family overall, and basically no friends) so that has also hindered my ability to apply these ideas to my life.
In any case, in terms of the question you asked at the end (what’s a story you often recite to yourself that hurts you more than it helps?) there are a lot of diff. things for sure but I guess one that really does bother me a lot is one that was ingrained into my head from the time I was about 7 (maybe younger but don’t really remember a lot before that) which was hearing my mom saying how men only fell in love with blonde-hair, blue-eyed women and saw them as the best with the most, that they were the ones they almost always wanted to marry and they desired them more than they did most brunettes with brown eyes. I haven’t told many people about this at all but the few I have have all thought it was crazy which has confused me a bit because I think it seems quite true most of the time. They certainly seem to be worshiped a lot more and are pretty much always the type who play “popular” girls in movies & even books are infected with that coloring.
I don’t feel like it even is a matter of belief it is a matter of my observation as well as life experience. When I see women with that coloring (the pretty ones that is, I know there are lots with that coloring who are not very pretty at all) I feel an absolute hatred of them 99.99% of the time. I know most people (especially women with that coloring far more often than not) would say “oh you’re just jealous because you wish you had that coloring too” but believe me when I say that is the not the case at all. I hate them because of how they have let it go to their heads (acting like they are the best thing that ever walked the damn planet) and because of how undeserved the worship is most of the time. They are almost always given way more credit than they deserve. It’s also kind of made me hate most men too because of how they react to that coloring most of the time. It is just far more often than I think is even remotely fair and I think the media promoting the women with that coloring as being so great is a huge contributing factor of that kind of follower kind of thinking. Far more people need to really take a stand against the promotion of that coloring & stop selling them as being the best there is.
Anyway to sum up, I really think it needs to be more balanced. I know life is not fair and all that but this is something that something can be done about if more people will be braver & speak up rather than just trying to kiss their butts and stay on their good side in hopes that it will bring them more money, power, attention, recognition and/or popularity or fame. A huge part of the world’s problems, esp. mental, would improve hugely if there wasn’t such an imbalance in this area. The distribution of life happiness and satisfaction with both genders would ultimately be much higher as well I think. This CAN be done but people need to start realizing how extremely important it truly is. This is not something that can continue to just be ignored, denied or brushed aside.
Mary Stephenson says
LOL Oh how true of what we think of ourselves … and the fact that no one is really paying attention.
But I absolutely love the ending … MY CAT really thinks she is GOD.
Thank you so much for taking your time to post your teachings. This makes so much sense. Starting from now to write my beautiful movie ??????????. God bless ??