“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.”-Carl Jung
Judgment Detox, oof. We’re talking about an everlasting project of a constant rewiring of our brain to remove the lifetime buildup of negative self talk + thought patterns, as we bring these thoughts to our conscious mind, we begin to realize how deep these sabotaging beliefs lie.
Negative Self Talk: As I got ready this morning, I was trying to be more intentional about what I thought about myself as I got ready for the day. I thought, with a little manifestation, I could put some positive feelers out there to improve my hair + skin. Knowing how powerful words can be, I chose to be more intentional about how I acknowledge things about myself. I thought this would be a fun exercise, but instead what happened was startling, I was overwhelmed by the constant chatter of negative self talk going on in my mind all the while I had no idea I was doing it.
As I began to put lotion on, I stared back at reflection in the mirror, taking inventory of the parts of me I didn’t love. As I begin to brush out my hair, I thought about how my hair will never grow past my shoulders and as I took a closer look, I noted the damage from years of coloring it. As I brushed my teeth, I wished that my teeth could be whiter, I inspected my skin, wishing my tone was brighter + skin was more even. Then I felt frustration, asking myself how can I be 37 and still have to deal with breakouts, this went on to every part of me, my eyebrows, my eyelashes, as if it was a never ending laundry list of picking myself apart unconsciously also sabotaging any chance to change it.
This wasn’t even something I was aware that I was doing. While I consciously feel differently most of the time, we have to recognize that our mind doesn’t understand the difference between the two realities of our conscious and subconscious thoughts. We must be careful on how we choose to feed our minds as they will not only dictate what we receive but how we are perceived based on our projections.
Negative self talk isn’t always about vanity, I’ve found myself in situations where I’ve regretted things I’ve said, regretting things I’ve done as well as things I didn’t do. I’ve overanalyzed the way I handled myself in particular situations, wishing I could have handled it differently. I’ve felt small in meetings, weak in group settings + have felt imposter syndrome a hundred times over, yet I can only name a handful of times where I felt proud of myself, loved the way I looked in the mirror wholeheartedly or truly felt confident in my skin.
Why do we do this to ourselves? As Carl Jung pointed out-what we don’t like in others often is a reflection of the parts we don’t like about ourselves, yet the same can be said for what we admire in others. When we see someone we’re influenced, inspired or proud of, we often see our own reflection and the repressed traits we have within ourselves. This can sometimes show up as jealousy. The duality of these repressed feelings are known as our Shadow Self. The parts of us we refuse to acknowledge and as a result, we cause chaos instead of harmony each time. Rather, if we chose to look inward with more kindness and compassion, we would only find more peace within when we encounter these traits manifested in others.
If you believe in a higher power, no matter the form to which you believe they exist, Universal Law states We Are One. You are the same as I, only to separated by our human experience. We are all connected by One Source. If you would rather think about this from a scientific view, consider the atoms that are currently moving around inside of you, they have existed for thousands of lifetimes before yours, inhabiting oceans, plants, trees and humans who have lived before you. You literally have millions of lives living within you that have once taken on a different form. You are quite literally many other people.
Not to mention your body is made up entirely of energy that somehow exceeds thousands of miles outside of your physical body. How else can you explain the synchronicities between two people even when they’re a thousand miles apart or feeling a person’s energy from across the room.
If we are truly one entity, then why do we spend so much time being mean to each other? Eckart Tolle sheds light on this in his book A New Earth, he coins the term “pain bodies.” stating we often react to situations based on the pain we carry inside of us, projecting our fears and negative beliefs among the people whose familiar pattern triggered the unresolved pain within us.
I’m first to admit that I’m no saint here, but I have tried extremely hard to consciously change my implicit thoughts and patterns on how I view myself + how I view others, but as I mindlessly scroll through social media, I find my mind drifting to a familiar place of negative thoughts before I even realize what I’m doing. A similar thing happens when my mind is on auto pilot, as I drive along the freeway I’ll start to think about a friend or acquaintance that I have unresolved feelings for and my natural reaction is to start thinking about the parts of them that I’m frustrated with. While I hate when these thoughts exist, they often become our golden ticket to figuring out what changes we need to make within ourselves.
For example, I follow this particular account on Instagram, she’s someone I have followed for years and I’m truly in awe of what she has accomplished during that time. But for unknown reasons, I’ve always had a problem with her messaging. It can often be direct + abrasive, and when this happens I find myself annoyed. I thought the best move for this situation would be to unfollow her, instead I allowed myself to sit with it for a minute, I tried to understand why I felt triggered. Suddenly it became clear, I have struggled with years of caring about what people think of me that I actually envied her ability to speak her truth without giving a fuck about what people think. Which is quite literally the person I want to be when I grow up.
Pay attention to these little nuances. If I find myself annoyed by someone’s inconsistency or lack of accountability, it’s likely because I am carrying a pain for people in my life not showing up when I needed them to be there. If I get defensive when I feel like I’m being criticized, I immediately go to a place where I feel defeated because I’m doing my best yet somehow plagued by a feeling of inadequacy rooted by a fear of unworthiness.
Hopefully by my detriment you can see a pattern. We have a lifetime of pain to unpack from our oversized bags, but if we want to change, we have to start looking within. Take a couple minutes to sit with your feelings, give yourself some grace as we process and heal from our experiences from pain we convinced ourselves otherwise didn’t exist.
Once we manage to treat ourselves better, we must then turn to each other. We have to stop talking shit about each other. When we find ourselves consumed by feelings of anger, annoyance or resentment, we must ask ourselves if it truly makes us feel better? I can assure you that in moment it may feel that way, but in actuality it stays with you and does the exact opposite for your peace of mind. The feelings remain, as they store with the rest of the pain we carry + as we look outwards for validation, our hope for someone to understand us + feel our pain instead invalidates our human experience and will prevent our ability to heal. Brianna Wiest shares in her book, A Mountain is You, “when we cannot validate our own feelings, we go on a never-ending quest to try and force others to do it for us but it never works. We never really get what we need. This looks like needing attention, affirmation, compliments, but it also looks like being dramatic, negative, and focusing disproportionately on what’s wrong in our lives.”
The only way to uplevel and change our world is to take time to heal + offer ourselves forgiveness. We can chose to love instead, not only loving each other but more importantly, loving ourselves. As Gabby Bernstein shared ” I’ve gotten into the practice of witnessing by judgemental thoughts + quickly forgiving them, I silently say to myself: I forgive this thought and I choose again (Judgement Detox)”
& with that in mind, let’s leave the Judgin’ to Jesus.
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