How do you feel about yourself? Are you sure in your words and actions? Or do you flounder, falter, hang your head and default to the ideas and opinions of others?
Society has molded us to believe that we must act and be a certain way. The shoulds and oughts are strongly ingrained.
- “You’re supposed to do it this way.”
- “Follow this authority.”
- “Do as you’re told and don’t question.”
- “You are not worthy to receive.”
All this ends up doing is inviting others to take advantage of us.
If you grew up in a family or culture where there were a lot of oughts, shoulds and guilt trips, let it all go.
As a grown adult living a free life, you now have the ability to make your own choices.
Do you walk around feeling guilty and apologizing? Just forget about that.
Unless you have very clearly brought pain and suffering upon another person, there is no reason for you to get caught up in guilt or feelings of inferiority.
What things do we say to ourselves, and to others about ourselves, that communicate our sense of unworthiness?
“I don’t know what I’m doing.”
It’s true that most of us do not know what we are doing, at least for a good portion of the time. Then after we learn, we actually do know what we are doing. That’s how life goes.
Saying it, especially in the company of others who either act like or truly believe that they know better than you do, will make them assume a dominant position over you.
So drop the humility… or at least limit your use of this phrase to the times when you truly are confused and in need of some direction.
“I don’t know what’s going on.”
A lot of people get caught up in the sense that everyone else has information that they need but did not get. Life is a grapevine, bound to get confusing, likely for the message to grow distorted as it moves from person to person.
If “I don’t know what’s going on” becomes one of your catch phrases, people will believe that you are senseless, foolish, or lack intelligence.
Why give them this false perception? Maybe it’s better to say “Please tell me what is happening here”, or “I need more information.”
“No one ever tells me anything!”
You probably have said these words in response to someone who told you what was going on. So clearly, you were told.
If this is a perception that you have, just let go of it because it’s causing you to walk around feeling uninformed or misinformed. You might even perceive you’ve been passed over by others who have some sort of insider scoop that you do not have.
This is also false, and there is no need to let such a notion contaminate your mind.
Of course there are times when it’s good to apologize. If we’ve unintentionally caused minor harm or inconvenience to another person, it might be good to say you’re sorry, and explain that this was not your intention.
But walking around saying you’re sorry all the time when it’s not necessary or warranted puts you beneath others. Apologize often enough, and you will soon start to believe that there’s a reason for you to be sorry when there is not one.
Being humble is a good thing, but only if we are all humble in our imperfection together and at the same level. If you find yourself apologizing needlessly, look around and notice that you are the only one doing this. Then stop!
“Shame on me.”
Truth be told, someone else’s utterance of this phrase sparked me to write this article today.
A person on social media used the phrase “Shame on me” for being long overdue for an appointment to have their teeth cleaned and taken care of.
“Shame on me,” what does it tell others? It says “please scold me,” and is there really a need?
Shame doesn’t make anybody feel good and it certainly doesn’t help people solve problems. So let go of the shame.
If somebody flings shame at you, picture yourself swinging an invisible baseball bat at these negative words coming at you. Shaming is 100% unnecessary, and a put-down that smacks of arrogance.
“I’m an idiot.”
People say this about themselves when they mess up, fail to understand, confuse instructions and other things that everybody does because we’re human and we make mistakes from time to time.
You’ll notice that the people with the biggest egos never call themselves an idiot and won’t let others do it to them, either.
If you don’t know something, then you don’t know it. The best way to know it is to learn it and try again.
If you find yourself thinking or saying that you are an idiot, a dope, or some other derogatory term, remember your rules for treating others and holding them in high esteem. Then do the same for yourself.
Conduct yourself in your life in the best possible way. Do good in the world. Live by the simple Golden Rule of treating other people the way you would want to be treated.
Forget judgment. Forget condemnation of yourself and others. Make the best choices that result in the best outcomes. Let logic, reason, information and evidence define your decisions.
Live by experience, not by what someone told you you should do and then tried to make you feel bad about.
Get out of the habit of speaking to yourself negatively, the way you may have been spoken to in the past. Reject the negative messages, cast them away.
Being kind to yourself will also elevate your manner of dealing with others as well. Good begets good.
Rise to a new level of freedom and personal power in your life!
Dina Gio is the owner of this blog and a long time copywriter and content marketing expert. Her strong suit is ghostwriting positive psychology articles and ebooks for life coaches. Contact her to book writing or marketing services here.