When people that I love believe things about me that aren’t true, I blame myself for not being able to express myself clearly even though rationally I know that I can’t control other peoples perspectives.
Still though, I need to learn not to beat myself up so much.
I do have a big problem with talking to myself negatively. It comes up when something happens that didn’t go the way I had planned. So someone thinking something that isn’t true about me after a conversation I’ve had with them, triggers that negative self talk.
Awareness helps yet it doesn’t change the frustration I have trying to explain to someone that they’ve misunderstood. It’s a lot like this…
Me: I love the yellow of that flower.
Other: Your favorite color is yellow!
Me: No, it’s blue. I just think the yellow in that flower is really nice.
Other: You just said “I love the yellow”. Why are you going back on what you said now?
Me: Because that’s only part of what I’m saying? You left out “of that flower”
Other: Flower, car, hat, whatever, if you love yellow then that’s your favorite right?
Me: No. There are degrees of appreciation. I can love yellow, but not as much as blue.
Other: I can’t talk to you about this. This conversation is going nowhere.
When people form opinions they get aggressively locked into them. You can tell them that they’ve misunderstood until you’re blue in the face but peoples desire to be right will more then likely block any rational discourse. As someone who tries to be aware of their own bias, I see this in others all of the time, and even myself.
My problem is that afterwards I automatically assume that it’s my fault. I didn’t explain myself in a way that was easily understood. I’ll even go as far as to tell myself something like “Next time be more specific. You should have said “although blue is my favorite color, I love the way the yellow looks on that flower.” I can’t believe I was so dumb! ” and then I’ll spiral into self loathing.
Like I said before, rationally, I know that I can’t control others perspectives. I know that the other person is just as much to blame as myself. Sometimes more so. The only thing I can control though, is myself. So that means I give myself all of the blame. Even when I know I shouldn’t. That’s ridiculous right?
I am trying to be more aware of when I’m not being kind to myself. I try to catch myself when I’m doing it. Trying to talk to myself better. Anna Akana over on Youtube has a great video on the topic of negative self talk…
Someday I’ll break this horrible habit. It’s a process. I just have to keep trying and keep pushing forward.