Tuesday, March 27, 2012

a girl of surpassing beauty: part 4 {how to cultivate proper self-talk}

We need to start loving and seeing ourselves the way God loves and sees us.
= the brunt of this series.

In the first 3 parts of this series {here, here and here}, I have been explaining that we need to saturate our minds with the things of God.  When that happens, your world view begins to conform to the views of God RATHER than the views of the world.  You begin to understand that TRUE BEAUTY is a heart hungry for Him.  A life lived to glorify God. 

I know what you're thinking...that's great, Michelle.  I agree with you.  But I still feel ugly!  You don't know what I see beneath these clothes!  

Can I tell you something?  When you start to filter your thinking through God's Word...the "world's" idea of beauty will slowly begin to fade away. {note:  I said slowly.  this process doesn't happen overnight, girls!}  And as a result, you will GLOW with TRUE JOY for God and this life.  A joy that can ONLY come from God.  That glow will radiate to others.  And people will be drawn to your God-given beauty.  TRUST ME.  You will feel beautiful.

Because it's not about looks. To prove this, think about it:  isn't it true that you can tell when someone has had a very bad day before they even open their mouth?  How about someone who has lived a long and hard life? Doesn't it just show ALL over them??  Even if they are considered "attractive" by the world's standards?  It's even common to hear the phrase "ugly" used to point out a person's nasty attitude, That girl was acting so ugly... That's because the INSIDE affects our OUTSIDE.  The most beautiful people are the ones who are CONFIDENT and CONTENT.

But as I mentioned in the last post, this process can be so hard:
When an infection is found inside a wound, it must first be removed before the healing process can begin.  As we actively renew our minds, we must also learn how to beat down and fight back all the years of pain, hurtful comments, and false truths that have been told to us.
Mike is a strong advocate for the "replacement theory" {<-----that's not an official name, just a name we affectionately call it in our family...in fact, if you were to google that...it would NOT mean what I'm about to say it means!}  He has taught me how important {vital!} that "theory" is in the process of true change.  Here's what I mean:  whenever a bad habit/behavior leaves, a good habit/behavior must take its place.  Otherwise, the bad habit will never truly leave.  In fact, it will mostly likely return.

All that to say, we must re-learn how to talk to ourselves!  We must exchange wrong thinking with right thinking!!  Here's some tips/suggestions that were inspired by the book, Get Positively Beautiful by Carmindy, on how to cultivate proper self-talk and repair your damaged self-image {this list is not exhaustive}:

1) Stop tearing yourself down!
Stop being mean to yourself.  Just because Suzie in your 4th grade class embarrassingly pointed out to the entire school that your left thumb is slightly larger than your right...doesn't give you license to join her in the mocking.  Ignore 4th grade Suzie. Don't give her the control over your self-worth.  Steal it back and start being KIND to yourself.  You are going to be with yourself for all eternity...so start getting along!  Start reminding yourself that you are a child of God!  God loved you enough to send His only Son to die for your sins (including self-hate)!!  Sit and ponder and try to wrap your mind around that concept!  He loves you JUST THE WAY YOU ARE.  Start loving yourself in the same way.

2) Drop the flaw focus!
"Don't take over the role of critic and turn up the volume."  Start celebrating your individuality and focus on enhancing/praising your unique qualities!  Speak sweetly to yourself in the mirror each morning.  Rather than saying, ugh.  another blemish!, start saying, my green eyes sparkle today!  Rather than saying, no one likes me!, start saying, God has blessed me with ___________ allowing me to bless others!

3) Kick away corrosive comparisons!

a) This is a DANGEROUS game, my friends.  This is what affects me the most.  How about you? Can I assume that you feel the same way?  I start comparing myself to other girls in church, in magazines, on T.V., at the grocery store, on their blogs(!), and almost any other place a female might co-exist with me.    
b) Stop comparing to stop despairing!! 
c) WE are society, girls.  The media will change if we change!  A Proverbs 31 woman is NOT APPRECIATED in our culture.  But the lady who lives those principles out, THAT is beautiful in God's eyes.  We can be the pioneers to set such a standard. 
d) Revel in YOUR fantastic features/qualities.  Because there is no set standard of feminine beauty.  There really isn't!  Every. single. woman is born blessed with SOMETHING she can claim as beautiful.  Tuning in to what is special about you, turns on that inner light that transforms into a thing of beauty.   
e) "Recognize that there will always be someone more this and someone less that.  BUT the one with the most confidence wins every time - so stop keeping score!  "The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we are comparing our behind-the-scenes with everyone else's highlight reel." {source Pintrest}
f)  And finally, do you even know how much it costs Jennifer Aniston to be Jennifer Aniston?  If you don't, let me tell you:  approximately $11,933.90/month.  (say what?!?!)  You heard me read it right.  That means it costs that girl about $141,0377.97 per year to be that "beautiful".  "So the next time you're sighing over a photo of Aniston's face/legs/butt/whatever, consider that with the money she spends to look beautiful for a year, you could: purchase a home in the Midwest, send a kid to college for (almost) four years, buy six Honda Accords, or fly roundtrip from Los Angeles to New York -- in first class -- 44 times! Kinda puts things in perspective, right?" {source via} 
{source via}

You need to stop believing the lies and start listening to the truth.  Pray and ask God to help you to do this.  Because God doesn't make junk.  That means YOU aren't junk.  And God saw everything He had made, and behold, it was very good.  Genesis 1:31

Come back tomorrow for part 5 where I discuss {how to find the beauty inside}.  It's already there!  I promise!

Sunny and breezy.
But it feels like 25° in the dead of winter!
Had a lunch date with an amazing friend today.
Rejoicing with her over good news about her internship!

Writing with love to an audience of One,

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Love is to the heart what the summer is to the farmer's year - it brings to harvest all the loveliest flowers of the soul. -Unknown