Tag Archive | self worth

Voices in My Head

I suffer from a problem I am sure none of you ever face. I experience bouts of low self-esteem and lack of confidence.

I know, I know, this is unfamiliar to you, but if you will allow me to share my story with you, perhaps you will have a clearer understanding.

Inside my head are a bunch of ping pong balls that bounce around triggering thoughts and ideas – sometimes they run in supercharge mode and hit all the negative nerves inside my brain …and occasionally hit on ones I didn’t know existed. These negative thoughts turn the volume up until nothing else can be heard except the slow and steady drumming. Think of that car that passes by your house with bass turned so high the windows rattle. Yeah, that’s my mind-field.

Several months ago my small group did a video study by Pastor Steve Furtick. I had never heard of this guy, but the title looked interesting – Crash The Chatterbox.

In this study he described the thoughts we have and voices we listen to as a factory, and we must maintain quality control. That was interesting in itself, but what really got my attention were the sessions where he ‘interviewed the chatterbox’. He personalized the chatterbox by having someone portray this chatterbox. He demeaned the interviewer, reminded him of his failures, and hinted at others displeasure of him. It appealed to me because, by placing a face and personality to this negative trait, it changed the way I looked at ‘the ping pong balls’.

Taking my cue from the chatterbox interview I created my own ‘chatterbox’. I used one of my teddy bears.

Are you a Star Trek fan? Do you know what happens when a crew member in a red shirt joins the away team? Yeah, that person won’t be back. The term “red shirt” is defined on Wikipedia as a stock character in fiction who dies soon after being introduced.

So, I got out one of my Star Trek bears, dressed appropriately in a red shirt, and named him “chatterbox”. When the negativity strikes I tell my red shirt chatterbox to shut up.

Occasionally, before dying, a red shirt will say something that may be referred to throughout the show. Thus, my red shirt doesn’t always stay quiet. So, I created a NO CHATTERBOX ALLOWED sign. I put the bear in the box and ban it from mind. Hey, whatever works!

Still, the chatterbox tries to call out to me. I need another defense!

This one comes in the form of a Tiara. Every woman should have a tiara.

It started in fun. I commented one day needing a tiara to remind me I am a daughter of the King and my wonderful husband, on his next trip to run errands, picked up a tiara for me.

I put the tiara on to remind myself of my worth. I am royalty! My Heavenly Father is the King!

In a quick check of google I found some tips on how royalty is to be treated. Here are a few tips I learned and modified to tell my chatterbox it was unwelcome.

• Do not initiate conversation with royalty – Chatterbox, you may not start with me

• During a formal dinner, stop eating when the queen does – Chatterbox, stop chewing on my life, my past failures, perceived indiscretions, and inaccuracies.

• A non-royal must never touch a person of royalty – chatterbox, keep your distance; and stay out of my head!!

• Most importantly, take the lead from the royal person – Chatterbox, please leave me alone.

Speech_8_photo-9x6Yes, this is silly. But when I get a glimpse of myself with my tiara as I pass a mirror or see my reflection in a window or even in the monitor of my computer, I get a little smile. I stand a little taller. I walk with a surer step. I have the strength to block the chatterbox out.

Is it silly if it works? Yes, it is probably still silly. But there are is so much negativity around us it seeps into lives and can take over. We must find ways to see beyond it, to change the focus and the self talk.

For me, it’s a teddy bear in a box with a not welcome sign on it and a tiara on my head. How do you destroy the chatterbox in your life?

Confessions of a Recovering People Pleaser–Making My Own Decision

You probably don’t have to think extra hard to think of someone in your life that always knows what you should do.  One person in particular has an overwhelming personality and insists you do what they say is right you. Because you don’t like conflict or perhaps the other’s fierce determination they know what is best, you question your own judgment and do as they advised.

Can you relate? Or is it just me?

Part of people pleasing is doing things to make other people happy. Some people (speaking of myself here) will set aside their own decision making abilities and do as others insist, hoping the other person will like or even love them.  But it doesn’t work. Three things I realize in giving up my best judgment and doing what someone else has suggested.

  • Using the ‘doing what so and so told me to do’ takes the blame off you and you can now be a victim.
  • If things go well, the other person often enjoys taking the credit, reminding you how they knew best and often causing you to go deeper into questioning your own self worth.
  • If things don’t go well, the other person usually doesn’t take any responsibility toward it, opting out by saying something like “I was just giving you a suggestion, you are the one who made the decision” now adding frustration, guilt, and discouragement to your continuing self doubt.

I must stand firm in my beliefs and in my self worth.  This does not mean I cannot or will not change my mind. But changing my mind should come from considering valid information received, not pressure.

In Genesis 3 Adam and Eve are in the garden. Satan speaks to Eve and asks her a question. Not sticking to full truth in her reply satan asked her more questions and she followed his persuasion towards a decision that changed everything.  How often do we (speaking of myself here) allow others to persuade us toward something we are not fully comfortable with yet feel – at the time – it is the right thing to do, because while I am unsure that other person appears to be quite sure.

I am making an effort to slow down all conversations leading me toward another’s decision. In order to do this I have to remain focused: on my beliefs, on my desires and goals, on the direction each conversation is going.  I have to commit to MYSELF first. This isn’t easy, but it is worth it.

This is my life.  God gave me a brain and the ability to think for myself. I have the strength and ability to do what is right for me, even if someone else doesn’t agree.  This also means I have the strength and ability to deal with whatever consequences that come from my decision. 

I run the risk of not being like by someone, or being shunned by them. This fear of rejection is strong. What if they don’t like me anymore?  What if they tell other people how stupid they think I am?  In my heart, it hurts, but I have to remind myself, this isn’t a real ‘friend’ if they have to control me like this.

It also means I have to be careful in how I speak with others so I don’t lead them down the same path.

Look out world! A stronger me is emerging. You may not always get your way, and you just might be surprised by the results of me following my own path instead of the ones created for you.

Confessions of a Recovering People Pleaser – an Introduction

My name is TerryAnn and I am a People Pleaser.

If there was an anonymous group for this, I would be a charter member. 

I have lived my whole life trying to do what others wanted me to. I would then be in turmoil when the desires of 2 more differed or it wasn’t something I wanted. I would have this internal battle over why these people had a control over me. What made them or their opinions and desires more important than mine?

One day I was listening to Aaron Wilburn tell the story of “Hiny The Mule”.  (see the presentation via YouTube here).  It was a funny look at what it is like to please everyone. YOU CANNOT DO IT!!!

HisApproval The struggle to please everyone took away the inner peace I desired.  Christ promised us in John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”  He promised HIS peace. I wanted that peace. So I started to look to Him instead of others.  It wasn’t and still isn’t easy to do. I struggle daily with it. But I realize it is a decision; a decision I must make numerous times a day. I feel burdened when I have done something I think might even slightly displease others. Then I started comparing that to the burden I feel when I don’t have peace about that. Though both burdens are heavy, the conflict and inner turmoil within myself was heavier.

That person I didn’t please (or thought I didn’t please) will have forgotten the situation long before I do.  I am hurting myself more. Sure, some people will reject me. Rejection is hard. Were they really someone whose opinion of me is important enough to live with the inner turmoil?

The hard realization is: it is MY decision.  No matter what others say, my actions are my own.  I am responsible for them, not everyone I hope to please. So I am intentionally adjusting my focus from people pleasing to God pleasing.

Are you on this same journey?  Will you join with me?  We can walk together on the path toward God’s Inner Peace.