Transform Negative Voices

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When you Stop Telling Yourself that you are Awesome:

1. DO NOT ISOLATE. Do not choose to be alone with these lies. This voice is part of a disease. It could be depression. It could mean burnout. This voice wants to fully unload all the lies under your skin and wants you to shut down so it can feed you some more lies.  Do not believe them.

Reach out: Express how you are feeling to people you love and trust, even if it feels awkward. Even if you don’t know quite what to say—say it anyway. You will not regret it. This will open the gateway to allow truth to come rushing through the doorways of your mind. People will give you advice on what has worked for them. They will remind you of your awesomeness and just how far you have come. They will show you how much you are truly loved and cared for in this world.

Remember that the courage to express your struggles can help other people to realize that they are not alone either. By express exactly where you are at, in its imperfect glory, you will realize that you are not terminally unique. This is something that most, if not all, of us have gone through, or may go through in the future.

Communication is key—use all vehicles. Pick up that heavy phone. Call a friend. Utilize social media in the most positive way. Send a message and ask questions. Seek answers. “Take the best and leave the rest.” You will be surprised about the outpouring of support you will get, whether you have 50 Facebook friends or 5000.

Write an email to a mentor or contact a professional you have been working with. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) if the voices of negativity are super dangerously strong. These people can provide you with some solid advice and help you to come up with a plan of action.

                 2. DO NOT FORGET YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS. What have you done in your life? Take a personal inventory.  Get out a fresh piece of paper and unleash a brainstorming list for at least five minutes (timed) of things you’ve accomplished in the last five years. Whether big or small, let all the dogs out of the house. Do not ignore what you have been doing right. Re-frame in the kindest, most loving way to yourself.

Did you give some encouraging words to a stranger? Smile at someone who looked lonely? Did you give a keynote speech to an uplifted audience and get positive feedback afterwards? Did you eat a healthy meal? Have you called a friend to just simply ask how they are doing, without getting caught up in what was going on with you? Were you there for someone? Did you make a piece of art? Did you write a card of gratitude to someone? What ways have you taken care of yourself? Have you maintained a schedule? A part time job? Did you take a shower today? Make a hot cup of tea? Keep going…

                 3. DO NOT BUY INTO THE LIES. Just because some voices in your head are telling you that you are a lazy piece of crap, does not mean it is so. IT’s a lie of some form of depression. IT could be exhaustion, a symptom of another form of disease you have contended with: cancer, ADHD, bipolar, workaholism, PTSD. KNOW THAT IT IS NOT YOU; IT IS THE DISEASE. You are not these horrible things that the voices are telling you in your own voice (which makes it a challenge to detect it for what it is). YOU ARE AWESOME.

Feed yourself healthy messages. Think of some key mantras of brevity: three words or less. One word mantras are ideal. They pack the punch of power with a message that can reverberate throughout your whole being. Think of a deep inhale and a deep exhale. What can you say to yourself during each of these? Here are some examples, but work to come up with your own. The more personally you get involved with getting back on the positive track, the better, the more effective.

“I am competent. I am confident.”
“Smooth, flow.”
“I am awesome. I am relaxed.”
“Smooth. Flow.”
“Successful. Peaceful.”

                 4. DO NOT MISTAKE REJUVENATION FOR LAZINESS. These negative voices can also follow a powerful productive period. It is wise that you have come to the conclusion that you need to take it easy from a super busy period of your life. Give yourself credit. When you stop running around and stop in your tracks, the impact of all the running around hits. And it can hit hard. This gives you time to think. Think too much.
Keep telling yourself that you are relaxing to rejuvenate. IT’s okay to sleep in, drink a cup of coffee and stare at the sky for a while. IT’s okay to turn your social media off to reflect on what you have done, to seek inwardly what the world has given to you.

This is part of navigating through “success burnout.” The exhilaration and excitement of breaking through into new territories of accomplishment and sky diving into safe zones of new locations of success, still use up energy. You must recuperate from them or you will be sorry. You will be exhausted beyond belief if you do not reflect upon what just happened with all your successes and doings. All the action you have taken. Giving yourself time and space does not have to equate to feeling bad about yourself . Just acknowledge it and move on. IT is easier to expand than for all the success you’ve just experienced, to contract into a place meant for self-reflection.

Make loose plans to have fun and spend some time alone. “Do nothing,” then give yourself the time to do whatever it is you want or explore. Go on an adventure in which your feet walk you to a new place around your neighborhood into a new discovery or perspective. Write about your thoughts and feelings with no audience in mind. Allow yourself to be your best friend.

                 5. DO NOT LEAVE A HIGHER POWER OUT OF THE PICTURE. Be spiritual. Whether you believe in God or the universe or Pacman or humanity at large—get in touch with that higher power. They say prayer is talking to God and meditation is listening. Do a little bit of both. Surrender the bad feelings to God—lean on God and put it all into His hands. Take this sacred time to know you are never alone and that you are doing a great job. Even for two minutes, participate in some form of meditation and prayer. You will not regret this. Let the universe reflect back what an AWESOME person you truly are.

About author

Lisa Jo Barr

Lisa Jo Barr is a prolific writer. Her articles, columns and blogs have been published online, in newspapers and magazines worldwide, and has been featured in the book Chicken Soup for the Recovering Soul, Daily Inspirations. She is currently working on her first book. Lisa has a PhD in the School of Hard Knocks. Not only has she survived trauma, including childhood sexual abuse, domestic violence and rape; but she has overcome sex addiction, as well as other addictions to cigarettes and cocaine, and has learned how to manage Bipolar I and Complex PTSD. One of the brightest beacons in Lisa's life has been a strong determination to know herself, no matter what it takes, along with a knowing that she can deeply inspire -- that her experiences can help others realize they are not alone, that there is always hope for a better future. Lisa loves to swim, travel and listen to music. She lives in Denver, Colorado.

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