The real impacts of negative self messages in our lives – by Ross Gordon

When we send ourselves negative messages about ourselves, we can do so forgetting two things:
 
  • They came from us, they’re subjective, and 
  • If we say them, we can un-say them.
 
Negating thoughts may have started from something said by another, or a broadcast message propelled by someone’s desire for us to buy their product or service, but it is what we do with them that gives them their dangerous clout.
 
We attach a special significance to these judgments. They slide easily from being one view coming from one person at one time in one place, to being “facts”. We collect these facts believing they are about us in some meaningful way: they are “facts about us”. We feel they touch some truth about us, or about the world, and once we give them that status they can easily become thoughts and views that may never be questioned.

 

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In effect, we build a jail cell, incarcerate ourselves, and throw away the key. That it is a containment of our own construction eludes us — and we are no less prisoners for it.
 
This process occurs not just in regard to the bodies we inhabit. We collect evidence against ourselves, and tote it around with us wherever we go. Funny trait, that. Not funny ha ha. These kinds of judgments cost us in a number of ways.
 
They get in the way of us experiencing ourselves as great. They exist like asterisks should we get too fond of ourselves, reining in our joy and self love. They deprive us of aliveness, of joy, of spontaneity. They take us from the world and from ourselves. They take up valuable and finite emotional real estate. They draw energy away from other things.
 
 
role models group

The Fresh Collective Role Models program is all about showing our outfits on a range of bodies and shapes. Seven lovely real women from Toronto model and promote fashion for real, grown up women with real busy lives. This is one of the ways Fresh Collective is showing a commitment to celebrating a range of beauty for women. For more about the Role Models program, click the picture.

 
When we sit in our mental cells, grimly contemplating our limitations, we miss opportunities to enjoy the greatness that resides in others, and in ourselves. When we scribe our shortcomings on a papyrus scroll and tuck it under our arm, we remove ourselves from the world.
 
These complaints about ourselves might also seem to be a laundry list of things to fix, however, they tend not to get fixed or reversed, and their most onerous price tag is that they become permanent blocks to unconditional self love. They are costly.
They cost us, and they don’t have to.
 
If we are willing to cast these things aside (and there are ways to do this) we open ourselves up to a new world, literally. Flowers smell sweeter, colours are more vivid. Our lives get more meaning and purpose and we can live lives from that context.
 
It is that big.
 
When you find yourself critiquing yourself and your body, such views might seem like mere observation of fact. They could be, but they could also be the very things that have you struggle to see yourself as a beautiful gift to the world.
 
And what would life be like if you saw yourself as a beautiful gift to the world, every day?

 

What would that make possible?

 

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Join us June 6, from 7 pm to 9 pm, for a conversation about creating a real mindset shift around the negative messages we send ourselves. If you, like so many of us, look in the mirror and see a list of things to fix, or think you’ll be happier or dress better when you “lose the weight”, stop waiting for life to start. Learning to love yourself and your body unconditionally can be a life changing experience. 

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