Welcome to day 24 of Project Cheer! And Merry Christmas Eve! Today's cheer is brought to you by Jeffrey Platts. What's Project Cheer all about? Read this!
Cheer #24) Help someone be kinder to themselves
What's a simple (and free) gift you can give someone any time? The gift of loving and appreciating themselves. One quick way to do that is to bring awareness to their negative self-talk.
Imagine a four year-old child walks up to you and says, “I am stupid.” What would you do? Would you tell them, “Yes, you ARE stupid!”? Or keep silent and ask them if they want to a cookie? I sincerely hope not. Then why do the same thing with an adult?
All of us have some level of self-talk that is self-defeating and negative. Talk that tells lies about our innate goodness. Most of the time we keep it in our heads. But sometimes it creeps out in passing comments we say out loud. And if you’re like me, when a friend says a self-defeating thought, you’ll often just let it slide or maybe change the subject.
Let’s say your friend says one of the following:
"I'm such an idiot."
"My family is going to hate this dinner I just cooked."
"No one is going to come to my holiday party.”
“This outfit makes me looks fat.”
When this happens, take a moment and bring awareness to the message they just told themselves. “What do you mean, ‘You’re an idiot’?” And then just see what they say. Your pointing it out to them might be enough. For some people, it might even be the FIRST time they’ve ever taken an objective look at one of their own thoughts. If needed, share with them how you view them, the positive truth about who they are.
Don’t approach this as you’re trying to fix or change them. Nor are you responsible for how other people see themselves. Come from the idea that you care about them, you appreciate them and you see them in their true beauty and goodness.
Help spread holiday cheer by making sure we’re all loving ourselves as much as possible. The more love and kindness you have for yourself, the more you have to give to others!
Jeffrey Platts blogs about relationships, dating & wellness. He also teaches yoga. Find him on Twitter at @JeffreyPlatts or visit his website.