Working on “Get Over Yourself!”

You know that old adage how people are their own worst critics? Well, I earned my PhD in that. If you’re going to do something, do it well, right? I’ve been working on the old “Get over yourself!” for a long time. Thankfully, I can say I’ve made some progress, but man it’s a long haul!

Getting over yourself

Body Image

It’s no secret that I have had issues about my body image since around age 11. Until then I had the body shape of a bean pole. I could eat and eat and eat, and I never experienced excessive weight gain.

Then Mother Nature had a good laugh and flicked that switch off.

Before I could learn to rein in my over- and stress eating habits, my flat boy chest started resembling that of the preteen girls around me. I endured so many comments and jokes (“When is your mom buying you a training bra?”) that it made my naturally shy (back then) self turn even more inward.

Obviously, those mocking remarks embedded themselves in my psyche, and I’ve had to wrestle against those negative messages ever since.

I have worked so hard on my weight. At one point I had lost a considerable amount of weight, but the only way I could maintain that was to continue running the crazy amount of miles I was doing during my days of ultra marathon training.

While I’m not happy about my girth, I have come to terms with it. Instead of focusing on losing weight, I work harder at eating healthy meals instead. That area I have more control over.

Getting over yourself


I’ve heard time and time again how sexy confidence is, and when I really think about it I can agree. Obviously, over confidence is another matter, but the times I’ve felt best about myself were when I was feeling confident about something.

When I think about all the things I’ve done, am doing, and have overcome, I kind of laugh at myself for my utter lack of confidence in some areas of my life. I know that I’m a good and caring person, and I need to train myself to focus on my recognition of that worth rather than the impression my external self makes.

Easier said than done, but it isn’t out of reach either, right?

Stopping the negative internal voice

We all have that voice inside us that tells us a variety of lies such as “You can’t do that!” “You aren’t good enough!” and so on. I’ve learned to tune out so much of that, but there are some tracks of that tape I’m still working on muting. It’s almost surprising just how hard it can be to get past those messages.

And the thing is, we have the ability to control which internal messages we pay attention to. The negative ones are just so darn well-worn and comfortable that they’re hard to shake off.

Yesterday we spent the day with some good friends we hadn’t seen in a couple of years. We were discussing blogging, video, etc. Part of me would really like to do more video, and I would really love to do some podcasts. In my life as a hospice chaplain, my whole job was aiding people in doing the storytelling of their life. I’m really good at it, and I love hearing people’s stories.

What holds me back? My voice.

Yes, you read that right. When I hear my voice, I think “Ohmigawd I sound like SUCH a queen!”

As I’ve been interviewed for some podcasts recently, I’ve been surprised to hear from a lot of people who actually liked my voice.

Those comments have been a really helpful boost to my confidence. So, I’m working on the next phase for—videos and podcasts.

Getting over yourself

Get over yourself

It’s a big challenge to turn off those negative messages; to be able to look in the mirror and not shrink back from the reflection that greets you.

When Tigger is hard on himself or uses negative self-talk, I have him tell me 3 positive things about himself. I’m trying to help break the cycle while he’s young.

But I’m also going to start taking the same medicine I’ve been prescribing. There’s too much good about life to lose any part of it to self-negativity. I’m over it. Time to kick this nonsense to the curb.

Do you have any areas of “get over yourself” that you’d like to focus on? What challenges have you already overcome?

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  1. Story of my life. I think parents and the way we were brought up have a lot to do with the self image we have of ourselves as adults. Good for you for breaking the cycle and helping your son grow up with a positive self image!

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  2. Though it’s hard to do when people are around, stamping on the ground when your negative thoughts are running out of control and yelling “STOP!” cuts them off. You may also realize this already, but there’s nothing like traveling overseas for the first time long term and going home alive to add to one’s self confidence!

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  3. Lovely writing Talon! I think at some point everybody had to deal with similar thoughts and issues, I had and still do at times. I like your idea of countering the negative with “3 positive things”, it’s something I have to try myself! I love your attitude, stay that way! 😉

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    • Thanks, Franca! Yep, everyone has a similar challenge to varying degrees. It’s surprising just how hard it can be to get those internal messages to stop playing.

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  4. My challenge has been and still is that pesky negative inner voice. I have got better at quieting it quicker as I’ve gotten older although lately it’s become more challenging. I surprise myself sometimes with how hard I can be on myself.

    In my career in Management I always loved supporting my team and my colleagues. I found it so easy to believe in other people but still struggle with believing in myself. As you said Talon, it’s a long haul to to switch your inner voice from critic to supporter. Reading posts like this help me to wake up realize it’s time to change my thinking:)

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    • Isn’t it interesting how it’s so easy for us to be able to believe in and support other people, but when it comes to how we treat ourselves it’s a completely different story? So weird.

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  5. That’s it! I’m officially getting over myself! Seriously great and fun read!

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  6. I think that self-doubt is unfortuantely a part of life although you can definitely learn to lessen it. Mine was at my worst when I was a teenager and in my early 20’s but now in my early 30’s I have so much more confidence. I think that travelling definitely helped me to become more self confident

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    • It definitely is part of life, but like anything that doesn’t really help us move forward we can learn to tune that unhelpful voice out. Just takes time. ARGH! 😉

      Travel definitely can have a major impact. Absolutely.

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  7. Great post! We can all relate in some way and it is a life work to “get over yourself” as you say. I like your idea of countering the negative with “3 positive things”. I think I’ll use it on myself. thanks!

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  8. Every parent needs to help their kids build self-esteem as this is difficult for 90% of children. Because I felt like a dork through those difficult years, I made it a point to help my kids. Keep up the good work and it’s a proven fact that no one likes the sound of their own voice so you’re not alone.

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    • I’ve heard so many people make similar comments about their voice. Or about how unphotogenic they are. We sure are hard on ourselves!

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  9. I grew up as a fairly homely child; skinny, dark circles, buck teeth and then glasses in 6th grade. I grew into having a good figure and was always good at anything I did (intellectual, not physical) but lacked self confidence until age 30 when I had my teeth fixed. I blossomed and so did my personal life and career.

    But those negative thoughts and self doubts continued for many years, even as I climbed the work ladder to a VP level.

    I’ve done things others think are courageous and adventurous but I consider myself neither. My novels have been well received, I started writing fiction in 2012, but every time I worry if I’m any good.

    I think all of us have these doubts. It’s great that you are spending time helping Tigger work through the negative feelings about himself!

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    • It’s definitely something everyone experiences, and in some cases those self doubts can challenge us in a good way. The trick is not falling for the message. That can be so hard.

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  10. This is a beautiful share. Self-talk and self-image are things we all struggle with. I like how you organized your thinking into three main focus areas to work on. We are our own worst critics and chances are others rarely see us as negatively as we do ourselves. I try to remember this, particularly since I’m “of a certain age” now. LOL

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    • Did you see the experiment where an artist sketches women according to how they describe themselves and does another from a stranger’s description of the same person? Some really powerful stuff.

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  11. You could have been writing parts of this about me. I think everyone has self-doubt about certain aspects of their lives. As a young adult I was average weight for my height, somewhat on the slim side. Pregnancy pretty much did a number on my body and I’ve fought the weight battle for the past 30 years. Obnoxious isn’t it? About 3 years ago I lost 42 pounds and have managed to keep it off, but it’s a daily thought in my head, it never goes away. We recently celebrated a wedding in the family and just received the professional photos, which are beautiful! But what did I do? Oh yeah, look at my arm, look at my calves, whatever. And then I asked myself, why do you do that? Look at the joy in these photos! Yep, it’s a constant dance, I hear ya!

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    • Oh man! I can completely relate. I know when I look at photos that I’m in my eyes go to the three areas that bother me the most about my physique. Definitely more important to look at the other parts.

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