Tuesday, March 5, 2013

9 things you need to stop thinking

I've been thinking a lot about destructive thoughts lately. (And doing my darndest to not actually think them, of course.) But really, it's so easy to head down that miserable path of "I'm worthless" and "I did this and this and this wrong". The thing is, these thoughts are not even partially true. So, why think them?

  1. I am not attractive/beautiful/pretty/handsome. 
    Here's the thing, all too often physical attractiveness is based on a standard that no one will ever live up to. We've all seen the photoshop videos, right? Even if you're not comparing yourself to a photoshoped model, you're still comparing. Beauty isn't about comparison. Stop trying to be the same kind of attractive someone else is. You are uniquely you and YOU are beautiful. 
  2. I shouldn't have taken that risk.
    "Why did I text him, he probably didn't want to talk to me anyway."
    "I can't believe I asked her on a date, I knew she'd reject me."
    This is something I really resonate with. So often, I avoid taking risks because I fear the heartache of rejection and failure. It's much easier to play it safe. But here's the thing: the greatest things in life happen because of risks. Risks make you vulnerable, but it's only through vulnerability that you learn to love and care. If you're always playing it safe, you're never growing.
  3. Nobody would like me if they knew who I really was.
    I go down this path a lot. I definitely have "oldest child syndrome" and an unreasonable need to appear perfect to everyone around me. So, I put on that front. Then I spend time thinking about how if only people knew what I was really thinking, if only they could see what a mess my room is, if only they knew that I had to google a tutorial to be able to finish that design... they wouldn't be so impressed by me. No matter who you think you really are, I think you'd be surprised to know how much people actually know about you and still love you for.
  4. Life sucks.
    It does not. Plain and simple. The fact that you are breathing, walking, singing, eating, seeing, caring, loving, growing, etc. is SO beautiful. What a miracle life is. How is it that our fingers work, our voices produce sound, our eyes have the ability to view breathtaking vistas and sunsets? And maybe you're tone deaf, or maybe you can't walk. But you are still here, living. And you will always have the capability to love. 
  5. I don't deserve __________.
    Since when is life about deserving? And who gets to decide what you do and don't deserve. Don't we all deserve the world? We have the right to have everything we've ever wanted. And maybe we don't get everything we ever wanted. But we are uniquely blessed in exactly the way we need. Perhaps one of the greatest lessons my dad ever taught me is that life is not fair and if it was perfectly fair, we'd never be happy, because we wouldn't have what we want OR what we need.
  6. It's my fault.
    Stop blaming yourself for everything you think is wrong in your life. Yes, you are accountable for the choices you make, and if you're making bad choices, you're going to have some uncomfortable consequences. But you can't sit and blame yourself for everything that is seemingly wrong in life. There is nothing productive about letting yourself sit and feel guilty. There is productivity in righting wrongs and moving forward. 
  7. I'm not as good at ______ as they are.
    Again with the comparisons. They're pointless. We all have different talents and abilities for a reason. If everyone was a rockstar graphic designer, we'd have a whole lot of pretty packaging and zero food to put in it. The world needs both rockstar graphic designers AND rockstar butchers/bakers/candlestick-makers. You can't be good at everything everyone else is, so stop trying and work on being good at what YOU are good at. 
  8. I'm not good at anything.
    False. It's just plain false. You're good at something. Maybe you haven't found it yet, but part of life is trying new things and practicing and learning. Even babies are good at something, those things can cry like they are getting paid to do it. But even they had to find their voice. 
  9. I would be happier if I were _______.
    Life is far too short to wait for happiness. Happiness is a choice. It's something you do while you move to the next step in your life. It's something you do despite any trials or challenges you are facing. Happiness is never a destination, if it was, you'd get to the peak of the happiness mountain and you'd go right back down the other side. Happiness happens through the hiking, the suffering, and the living.
I could list more destructive thoughts that you should remove from your life, but frankly, I'm sick of thinking about them. Nothing good comes from allowing yourself to dwell on these things. You guys, life is good. It's so good. Let yourself believe it, hold on to the things that bring you joy, let yourself think thoughts that will build you up. 
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