{Are You a Hater?}
An inspirational entry from a recovering self-hater

The worst day of my life was the day I said I hate you. To myself.

I remember it clearly. It was a first: saying out loud what my mind had been screaming to my body for years. But it wasn't a last. I didn't like my body as a teenager and it seemed the best way to handle that was to say it. I cannot count how many days I looked in the mirror and spit venom.

"You look disgusting."
"That outfit is gross."
"Take it off. It's too small. Of course."

Counselors call this self-talk. It can be healthy and good. As a teen and 20-something, it rarely was for me. I used self-talk as punishment. My twisted wounded brain believed that saying mean stuff to myself would change my behavior. Maybe lose some weight. Maybe pick better outfits. But I never did. I just broke my own heart over and over.

Years later, it is something I still work on. Daily. I have to ingest God's Word like it's a meal. I have to cling to what the Bible says is true about me, not what I hear in my head.

And I have changed. I am changing. I'm being nicer to myself.

Just last week, I couldn't believe the kindness in my voice. I looked in the mirror and something just didn't seem right. I couldn't identify the issue—was it the fit of the jeans? The shape of the shirt? The fact I was seeing my crush in approximately 42 minutes and whatever I wore would be the deciding factor if we fell madly in love forever? {I'm a bit dramatic.}

Whatever it was, I hated my outfit.

I looked in the mirror and said, "You've got plenty of time, Annie. Why don't you try something else?"

Like I was talking to a friend.

"It's no big deal," I thought, "if you want to change into something different. Sometimes things look weird one day and fine the next."

So I changed. I put on a green shirt with a grey cardigan. It looked significantly better and I was at peace.

I'm learning that if I'm going to love my neighbor as I love myself {Matthew 22:39}, I have to love myself. And you don't say rude things to people that you love.

So I'm learning to speak kindly to those that I love... meaning me.

Something Else...
All beautiful you are, my darling; there is no flaw in you. ~Song of Solomon 4:7

Francesca Battistelli Free to be Me

Annie Downs is an author living in Nashville, Tennessee. Her first book, From Head To Foot, explores this topic more deeply... as well as provides some great recipes. Read more at annieblogs.com.

Check in with Annie over at She Seeks.

© 2012 by Annie Downs. All rights reserved.

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