Ever since I can remember I have had “trust issues.” I struggled trusting anyone. There wasn’t anyone out there that I could count on but myself. But in the past couple of years I’ve come to realize, I had very little trust in myself.
When I took the time to understand where my negative self-talk was coming from, I realized I didn’t trust myself. My inner victim (inner child) always stepped in to protect me from myself. “Don’t do that, you could get hurt.” A pattern I had developed long ago. The more I observed these interactions between my inner victim and my current self I realized, this was the root of so many of my struggles.
This lack of trust in my true self had manifested in so many ways throughout my life. It had kept me in abusive relationships. It perpetuated the idea that I needed to be someone else to get people to like me. I didn’t trust myself to stand on my own. Therefore I was always in a relationship.
I had to repair this relationship with myself. Knowing I needed to do it and knowing what to do were two totally different things though. I wasn’t sure where to start.
Visualization really helps me here. I visualize that negative (victim) voice in my head is a person. Then when the victim speaks up in my head, I can visualize it more like a conversation.
For example, my inner victim loves to compare my current self to my ex and his girlfriend. They do things with the kids that I can’t as a single person. When I notice this happening and the negative self-talk starts, I picture this inner victim and start a conversation. I remind her of how great I am doing. I tell her I am grateful the kids have two different experiences and that one isn’t less than the other.
When I first started trying to stop my negative self-talk, I took a tough love approach. I thought if I just made it stop things would be better. While it helped some, I realized this wasn’t helping build trust. My inner victim reacted this way because she was scared of being hurt. I wasn’t showing myself any compassion.
That realization brought on real change. I still have conversations with this inner victim. But now they are more understanding. I’m building trust. “I get that you’re scared doing this alone, but we’ve got this. Trust me. We are stronger than you think.” This is usually accompanied by imagined hugs.
I know that might be a little far fetched for some. Visualization might be too much for you. But try and understand where your negative self-talk is coming from. Maybe you just need to show yourself some compassion. ❤️