Stopping the Hate Talk: 5 ways to a Better You!

When you look in the mirror, what do you see?

“I hate my hair, my arms, my legs.” I look so fat in these pants.” Why can’t I look like that other girl? She always looks so perfect; she makes me sick. ” If I had all the money in the world and could afford a personal trainer, I could look like that too.”

How many times do we say these things to ourselves or about others? Why are we so degrading to ourselves and other women? It doesn’t matter your age: young girl, teenager, young adult, older adult, pre baby body., post baby body. When does it stop? When do you decide that you are enough and that God made you the way you are. As a teenager, I thought myself pretty; I thought myself confident. It wasn’t until middle adulthood that I started to doubt myself. There have been plenty of times that I have looked in the mirror and thought that I did not like the way I looked. Part of my problem is that I have not been treating my body right and I have had two babies and it really does change your body! What do you hate about yourself? What do you love about yourself? Which one do you think about the most?

Self-worth is defined as the sense of one’s own value or worth as a person; self esteem; self respect. Do you place value in yourself? Do you have respect for yourself? Do you think of yourself as worthy and beautiful?

All this self degrading hate talk stops here. IT STOPS HERE!I challenge you here-forth that when you look in the mirror you find one thing you like about yourself, just one. Daily. Yes, DAILY!

There is nothing that can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8: 31-39), but He still wants us to take care of ourselves and our bodies. The following things help me to take care of myself and help me feel good about my own self-esteem.

1.GET UP AND MOVE!  Whether it is taking a brisk walk around the neighborhood, an aerobics video in the comfort of your home, or training for a race, get up and move. Start TODAY! Even ten minutes a day can make a difference. Make it work. Maybe that means climbing stairs during a short break at work or parking in the furthest parking lot. Sometimes, for me that means having a dance party with my 3 year old. Or I have an aerobic app on my phone that lets me choose 5 to 10 minute increments. Sometimes my 3 year old and 5 month old join in the fun. One ting I’m going to try in the next few weeks is running before my husband leaves for work!

2. EAT HEALTHY! Of course there are lots of arguments about what is the best diet or supplement our there. Think before you eat! Is this particular food going to make me feel good or energized? I’m not saying to never have that piece of chocolate, I’m just suggesting you think twice about it. This is definitely one of my biggest challenges. I have a huge sweet tooth! It’s about lifestyle change. While I don’t follow it strictly and I am not an expert, my personal belief is that a plant based diet is best for health and energy. Commit to make a change. Just eating more veggies and fruit can make a difference! Progress not perfection!

3. CHALLENGE YOUR MIND! Take time to learn. Read, whether an actual book, a website, eBooks, newspaper, or a magazine. The world is full of great minds. You are one of them!

4. FEED YOUR SOUL! This is the most important point. Make time to pray or read your Bible and talk to God. I try to get up before my children in order for this to happen. Now lately, that has not gone like I planned. I have an almost 6 month old who wakes up in the middle of the night, and well, I am grumpy if I don’t get enough sleep. On those days, I try to read while I’m nursing him. Many times I’m praying in the car on my way to work. Those two things, especially the prayer, make a huge difference in how my the rest of my day goes, and how I feel about myself as a person. I am a much better mom, wife, and friend, when I make time to pray and read God’s word. End of story.

5. TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF! I don’t care what that looks like or how much time you say you don’t have. For me it looks like time to write or time for a hike, a walk around the neighborhood, sipping on a hot cup of tea or coffee on my back deck. Coffee or lunch or breakfast with a friend, even if it has to be over the phone. Perhaps you can wake up 10 minutes before the rest of your house, just to sip and drink your coffee. Maybe once a month, you can find a babysitter or your significant other can watch the children, and you can go get coffee, by yourself or with a close friend. Find a  walking partner. Train for a race with your co-workers. Sometimes, I take an extra long shower because that may be the only time I have had to myself that day. I breathe in the steam and take pleasure in the solitude and not having to explain what I’m doing. Everybody leaves you alone when you are in the shower (most of the time).

Challenge yourself to love more. We don’t need all the hate talk. Life is hard enough without being so mean to ourselves

What are some tips you have on increasing self-worth?

Thanks for reading! Please share with those extraordinary women you think need a reminder of how awesome they are!

I have purchased my own website now, so I will be getting away from word press and starting my blog over there! It’s still a work in progress, so be sure to join me at ExtraOrdinary Living  to see what adventures lie ahead.

 

CELEBRATE YOUR CURVES

Beauty in So Many Ways

Beauty in So Many Ways

I was driving home from work the other day when one of my favorite songs came on the radio. I had not heard this song in forever!  When you hear the title you will know what a sap I am for lyrics.  The song was “This One’s for the Girls”, by Martina McBride. I think I heard the song in my early to mid 20s. I would sing as loud as I could in my little sedan. It always gave me goose bumps. I felt it could relate to the depths of  my very soul of being a woman. It always makes me so sad when I hear women insult themselves or even others. That is not how God made us to be, but yet it is so prevalent in our culture. Each section of the song touched me in different ways. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTowId2CWHA

I think that now is actually when I need this song the most. I don’t recall very much lack of self confidence when I was a teenager or even in college and my early 20s. Somehow, I knew that all the things that people think others notice are not usually discernible to anyone but yourself. Very few people notice that zit or that you hair is too straight, or that you have one more roll or wrinkle than the person next to you. They are usually too busy thinking about their own flaws. I always knew who I was and to Whom I belonged.

It hasn’t been until my current years that my self esteem has started to plummet. I guess we all reach that stage at different points. You see, I was the girl that was skinny and didn’t have to worry about what she ate. While I was introverted and shy, when I made the effort, I could make friends easily. I put myself in situations where I would make the friends I wanted. It’s not that I wasn’t self conscious at times, but it was usually a fleeting thought, quickly brushed aside as being silly.

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You would think that now, in my 30s, would be the least likely time for me to have self esteem problems. But now is the time when my body has changed the most. I have been through one pregnancy and am currently pregnant for a second time. I felt confident I would lose the weight I wanted with my first child, (after all, I was going to breast feed) but I didn’t.  I was able to breast feed for over a year, but I have yet to lose the weight I wanted. I eat healthy; I exercise. (granted I could do better at both). I know in 10 to 20 years I will laugh at my 30 something year old self.  I have a beautiful daughter and a husband who loves me and adores me and thinks I’m beautiful all the time. But it is not enough for him to think that or say that, as much as he wants it to be. I have to believe it. And I have to remind myself of the beauty in myself and more importantly, the beauty that God sees in me. After all, He is the one who made me.

2103“O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me… You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand! I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence! If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. If I ride the wings of the morning; if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me. … You made all the delicate inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous-how well I know it. …You saw me before I was born….How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand!  And when I wake up, you are still with me!…Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” Psalms 139

IMG_1018 Everything He makes is beautiful. What I see are extra curves, but God sees hips that gave birth to a miracle and Lord willing a second healthy miracle. When I see my laugh lines, I see wrinkles, but God sees memories and love. When I feel that minor back pain, I feel hurt and frustration, God sees a healing back who stooped to help others.  Where I see ugliness, God sees beauty. In the near future, I may see gray hairs, but God will see wisdom. I may see arthritic hands, but God will see hands that provided comfort. Who are we to mourn our lives, we should be celebrating. Celebrate every curve, every gray hair, every wrinkle, they all have stories to tell. Know that it is okay to not be your same size you were in high school or college.

You are beautiful! God declares that you are precious!

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