Talking to a 4-Year-Old might change your life.

 
I love getting together with my friend Molly. We’ve managed to squeeze in some coffee dates in the last couple of weeks and we always have such great conversations. I love that she’s a crazy just like me and we can laugh about things like crying over sponges. (The sponge-crying is all me, but Molly has a story even better that I’ll have to make her share sometime!)

Well we started talking about the gut-renching, soul-stirring, life-changing book Carry On, Warrior, and we eventually landed on the idea of self-forgiveness.

Self-forgiveness, or in other words, something I’m terrible at.

You see, I’m rather forgiving, but when it comes to myself? Nuh-uh. I am my own harshest critic. I judge and I criticize and I obsess. I insult myself and doubt myself and

Beat

My

Self

Up.

Well Molly listened, and sympathized, and then told me something that will stay with me for a long, long time.

Imagine yourself back when you were four years old.

And then whenever you talk to yourself, ask:

Would you say that to little 4-year-old Andrea?

Wow.

That changed it for me.

Some of the things I’ve said about myself-

Well they’ve been downright cruel.

And there are many things I tell myself daily,

that I would never, ever, ever say to a little girl,

let alone my little past self.

You see,

It’s a simple switch in how I relate to myself, but an important one.

And one that I think will help me on my journey to

self-forgiveness

and

self love.

So from now on, I’m going to try to talk to myself as if I was speaking to this little girl:
 
photo1 (2)
 
And say things like

You are beautiful.
You are limitless.
You can do anything you set your mind to.
You are good.
You are worthy.
You can get up when you fall down.
You are strong.
You are courageous.
You will do better next time.

And believe it.

 
 
 
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  • http://www.baretribe.blogspot.com Britney

    What a sweet thought! And it really does change your perspective. We want to defend, protect and empower little girls… but not so much ourselves. I always tell my 5 year old that she is a little woman, I’ll have to start telling myself that I’m just a big lil’ girl. ;)

    • http://andreaenright.net Andrea Enright

      Yes, yes, yes. We defend and protect and come to bat for our little girls but can forget about ourselves in the meantime. And I love “big lil’ girl.” Aren’t we all?

  • http://aroadofonesown.wordpress.com Katie K

    Thank you for this! You’re 100% right – there’s no way I’d say the terrible things in my inner monologue to the fearless 4 year old me. Just imagine myself doing it and I felt a deep recoil against it. I’ll try to remember in my dark times.

    • http://andreaenright.net Andrea Enright

      Oh yes, it will definitely horrify you when you catch yourself in the act of negative self-talk. Glad this is something you think will stick with you!

  • Pingback: Sunday Best 3.16.14 » honesty with andrea e.

  • Anne-Marie

    Oh my Andrea – this last part, and the pic? Gave me CHILLS.
    So great. And please do tell about the crying sponge story? Left me dangling.

    Thanks for this beautiful link-up. And boy do we all bash ourselves so way too much. Hope you are finding your way to a gentler voice. I was just writing about that whole thing for my April post at Sheloves.

    Thanks for linking up.

    • http://andreaenright.net Andrea Enright

      “Finding a way to a gentler voice.” I just love that. THAT is what I need, a gentler voice when I speak to myself. So thankful for your thoughts, Anne-Marie. And the sponge story? Gosh I’m going to have to remember that one. It’s one of those things that is just SO ridiculous to cry about that I can’t even remember! It was THAT dumb and THAT insignificant. Hah!