Friday, April 19, 2013

The voice of self-hatred wasn't me

So, there's this video going around right now that actually changed my life...my future... 

It's the "Dove Beauty Sketches."

If you haven't seen it...it starts off with some women going in and sitting down beside a partition with a man (sketch artist) on the other side. 




The woman is then asked questions about what she looks like and the man draws what she tells him to...



After she's done, another person who was instructed to spend time with her earlier is asked the same questions about her. Now there are two sketches. One is how the woman sees herself and the other is how others see her...


The one that is done based off of what the woman says about herself is not as good. 


The women are then brought back in to see the sketches. This lady's reaction really hit me and made me cry...because it was at this moment I realized something...




As I watched the video, I realized where Dove was trying to go with this...that "you are more beautiful than you think." They were trying to show us that others see us more favorably than we see ourselves and that our view of ourselves is lower than reality. But...what really hit me was...

I realized that if I was to sit across "from you" having coffee and was to describe myself, I'd say things like...that I have a nasty double chin and my eyes look so ugly and weirdly shaped when I smile. My skin is getting old looking. My teeth are all messed up in front from drinking soda my whole life and..." the list would go on. And, I realized that were I to go off to this sketch artist in my normal way of describing myself...that he would not draw an "accurate" picture of me. I would look at his drawing and see that it was "not me."

Being sort of a "perfectionist" in some areas (like formatting my posts, etc.) this really hit me because if I was to instruct him on how to make his final product "accurate" I would have to describe myself completely differently.

See, the revelation for me was not in that others see me differently than I do...it was in realizing that I see me differently than I do.

What hit me was that I don't actually see myself the way I think I do. I already know that the way I describe myself is wrong. What then makes me speak of myself as I do? Why do I think I see myself so poorly? Why do I think that every part of me isn't good enough and doesn't measure up and "is ugly?" 

Because of how I was raised.

I was "taught" to see myself this way. I was taught that I was not good enough. I was taught that when I look in the mirror that person staring back at me doesn't measure up in any way. That's what was pounded into my head over and over, day after day, my whole formative years.

And, that belief that was put on me...that belief that was given to me...isn't me. Those thoughts aren't mine. Yet, somewhere along the line I adopted them as mine. I took them as my thoughts and those thoughts literally almost killed me so many times in my life...

Times that I've gotten SO LOW because I was overwhelmed with feeling inadequate and I was totally focused on all the things I can't do...don't do...won't do...times when I was focused on all the ways me, my body, and the way I live my life are not good enough...those times weren't ME. Those times were "that voice" that was put inside my head. Not me. 

I've been allowing someone else's voice to "possess" me in some sense and I've been believing a lie that that voice is me. The voice of self-hatred is not a voice of "self" hatred at all. It's simply "hatred" and it came from outside of me and it isn't ME. 

I don't hate me.
I don't think I'm good-for-nothing.
I don't think I'm worthless.
I don't think I'm inadequate.
I don't think I don't measure up.
I don't think that nothing I do is good enough.

And, it was in those short 3 minutes of watching that video that this hit me...

And, it was during those short 3 minutes that the 44 years' strangle hold that that other voice had over my life was taken away from it...

Sorry, other voice, but your time of controlling me is over...




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