We’ve talked at length about the steps you can take to overcome self-criticism, and how you can make the road to recovery more completely. Last time I shared with you four tools that are essential to your recovery tool kit, keeping your inner dialogue diary, removing infinites from your vocabulary, tracking your positives, recording your negative thoughts and destroying them! These are just the tip of the iceberg as they say:
5. We all know that the negative voice won’t stop just because you shred that list from before. These nasty little negatives will continue to nag at you. Make a secondary list that you keep tucked away in a safe place, once a week take this list of negatives and shred it. But not before you read it and look back at what it was that caused you to feel that way.
6. Take a look at yourself in the mirror; look at the face in front of you as if it were someone else. You do not know that person in the mirror, you don’t know their story. Look at your eyes, your nose, your chin, and your lips. See the positive things about the face in the mirror. See the negatives, why is it a negative? Because someone told you it was? Really explore these thoughts and how you came to feel this way. Now be honest…were you able to put yourself aside and only look at the face in the mirror?
7. Listen to your emotions, when are you happy? Why are you sad? Do you feel withdrawn and hopeless? What scares you? Knowing the root causes of your feelings and emotions will help you see the changes that you need to make in your life to be happy again. You will never be able to move forward if you can’t put the past behind you and allow yourself to HEAL!
8. Listen to the voice in your head. When you hear the positive thoughts and feelings, whose voice do you hear? On the other hand, who do you hear when you hear the negatives? Look at the people who you hear in the negative thoughts, and consider how you should go about removing them from your life. Surround yourself with people who are the positive voices!
It’s important to look at the negative side of our lives and see where we came from, then take that information and remove its power to cause us more harm. By allowing our thoughts to be consumed by negative thoughts and self-talk we drain the positives out of our lives and we allow ourselves to become victims. This is the perfect atmosphere for co-dependence to sink its teeth in and grow. This is the beginning of a vicious circle in which your negative thoughts and poor self-image continue to grow.
Once you have used the tools provided you are armed with all the information that you will need to seek out professional help and begin your journey. Growing as a person with the help of therapy, counseling, life coaching, or other forms of professional assistance is essential to recovery.
While you are working through your recovery both with help and on your own there are other tools you can use to make your journey more complete.
- Meditate, take time to sit and contemplate you, happiness, and where you see yourself in the future.
- Take up Yoga, not only will yoga help you to focus on something other than your negative thoughts but it is a naturally relaxing form of exercise. Yoga will allow you to embrace a healthier you!
- Take a few minutes and help someone in need. Not in the sense that you would help an addicted partner, but instead to share your life’s journey with someone else who is going down the same road. Share your story, and know that you are not alone.
- SMILE!! Even when you are alone, stand in front of the mirror and practice if you need to, don’t just smile when you are with people. Smile when you are alone…Allow yourself to be HAPPY, And to show it.
- Leave yourself positive notes around the house, on your computer, the bathroom mirror, on the dashboard of your car, your office desk. Read positive quotes online, or in books.
- Remember, NO ONE is perfect. And I mean NO ONE. Don’t hold yourself to unachievable standards. You are human, and that is beautiful, even in your mistakes you are nothing more than human. You are not a screw up, you are not messed up, and you are perfectly YOU.
- Enjoy your hobbies. Sing, watch TV, read a book, listen to music, cook, take a class, and just allow yourself to enjoy life and the things that make you the person that you are.
- Celebrate your victories. You made a great pot of coffee this morning, that lipstick looks fantastic on you, you made it to work early. Don’t be afraid to pay yourself on the back and celebrate even your smallest victories.
The foundation of co-dependence is negativity and poor self-image. The only pay to recover and move on from this unhealthy relationship is to destroy it at the very foundation. Take away the negativity from your life, and allow yourself to find the path to a healthy and happy relationship with your friends and family. But even more importantly, with yourself.