This is a topic that has come up a few times this week. Negative stories we were told as children about ourselves or we believed to be true about us but were not. Things that adults say because of their own insecurities or illnesses that stay with us into adulthood. Those ideas that we carry with us as facts when they were never really true and hold us back from being our best selves today.
As children we are vulnerable, we trust what is said to us, or shown to us by those around us by the adults in our lives and by other children we may encounter. Those events or words many times sear into our being and continue to replay over and over as we go through adolescents and into adulthood. They get in the way of our goals and healthy relationships if we continue to listen to the falsehoods of our past instead of asking ourselves if they are true today, or if they were ever true. We don’t investigate the true nature of the circumstances of why something untrue may have been said to us, why someone may say something negative or why they would want to keep us down. The reason typically has nothing to do with us, yet we carry around the baggage from those exchanges and allow them to mold who we believe we are.
I know for myself that I carried around a lot of false stories and beliefs about myself until I sought help for my mental illness. I believed I was less-than, not good enough, different and weird and that I did not deserve good things. I let those false stories drive the narrative of my life and allowed them to get in the way of opportunities and success instead of sharing my gifts, talents and who I really was. And I put myself in situations with people who would continue to drive those negative stories home and keep them alive. Even writing about this now I feel pressure on my chest like an unforeseen force pushing me back, but I know that that force is within my control and it is not my truth today. When I began my journey in recovery, I was told to write down the truths about myself, most of whta I wrote was negative, and then I was asked how many of them were true. I of course thought they all were. But when I was asked to back them up with facts the only things I could come up with where my own behavior I participated in to make them true, they, on their own, in fact, were not true, and many never were, they were projected on me by others who were fighting their own internal battles.
Today I look for the facts. My truth. I can sometimes still be plagued with stories from my past trying to convince me of their value, but because I’ve done the work I have I know the root of those stories and now use them to look into why I may be feeling that way, using them as a tool to keep myself and my own mental health in check. I can use those stories of my past for good today, as a tool to help me overcome what I may be in fear of or apprehensive to try and most past it. I also have been able to break the cycle of my past and find new and healthier ways to live my life and choose healthier relationships that support the person I am and my truth.
Today I am creating my own stories, ones of love, overcoming obstacles, and ones of hope. I know that I can accomplish almost anything I set out to do and continue to challenge myself to try new things and say yes when challenged. Those stories may still be a part of me but I don’t let them control me, and I use those stories of my past to fight for that little girl who didn’t know better and trusted what she heard and saw, I keep her safe today by honoring my truth and loving myself through my words and actions.
Let go of the stories of your past and start telling the ones that truly tell your story today. SLAY on!
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you allow yourself to get stuck in old stories from your past that may not be true? What stories do you still believe or keep alive in your life today? Are those stories true today? Where they ever true? What can you do to stop the cycle of living in the past that may not have been your truth to begin with? And, even if some of those stories were true, they may not be true today. We are meant to grow, to change, to discover who we truly are, we have the power to stop the cycle of our past and learn to be our best selves. Who we were yesterday is not who we are today, unless we allow ourselves to stay stuck where we are. We get a fresh start each day to make a positive change in our lives and to participate in positive acts that reflect who we are and that is loving to ourselves. What story tells your truth today?
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you