Less Negativity, More Affirmation

Less Negativity, More Affirmation

I recently realized that, for being a relatively happy, upbeat person, I’ve been carrying around a little 5-foot-tall crochety old Italian guy in my head.

Well, I’m not sure if that’s what the voice sounds like, but it’s nice to give it a familiar persona. I’m visualizing my negative thoughts kind of like my paternal grandfather.

We loved him thoroughly, but, let’s face it, he wasn’t your typical warm-and-fuzzy grandpa material. There was no doubt, he would tell it like it was {and whatever it was, it was going to be sprinkled quite liberally with choice adjectives}.

“What are you doing? You’re wasting time again?”

“Look at this house — it’s a mess! When was the last time you cleaned the baseboards? I bet {fill in the blank here} doesn’t have dusty trim.”

“Why can’t you have any self-control and just limit your computer time? Figure it out, c’mon! You should have some kind of schedule where you only check social media at 7:15 am for 15 minutes before you wake the kids, and then for 15 minutes during nap-time and then after everyone is in bed.”

“I can’t believe you’re not cooking a ‘real’ dinner — again!”

“I can’t believe you just spent the entire morning cooking and cleaning up the kitchen — aren’t there better things you could be doing with your time?”

“I can’t believe you spent the entire naptime working around the house when you should’ve been writing!”

“I can’t believe you fell into bed at 10:00 p.m. without spending any quality time with your husband!”

“I can’t believe you spent that entire naptime on your computer when you should’ve been relaxing — you need a break sometimes too, you know. Why can’t you kick back and have a cup of coffee and just read home magazines, instead of always being ‘on’?”

“Why do you keep putting off working on your book projects — what, are you afraid? You’ve got to suck it up, just do it. Sometimes, you are just the worst procrastinator ever.”

“Why do you constantly ignore your kids? Look how sweet they are and how fast they’re growing up — you’d better work harder at enjoying them. You’re not doing good enough.”

These negative thought tapes play over and over in my head sometimes, on a continual loop. I just can’t win with myself. Seriously.

I criticize myself no matter what I do. It’s never enough.

And, the strange part is, this internal dialogue is so ingrained, I don’t even recognize it for what it is. I don’t even realize what’s going on.

But, unconscious or not, this negativity takes a toll. I start to feel negative. I become convinced I’m going to forever be on the losing end of time and effort, never doing or being enough.

Even when I start my day in God and in His truth, the continual drone in my head often washes away the truth that I am always enough in Him.

A few years back, I came across this scripture:

All the days of the oppressed are wretched, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast.

Proverbs 15:15

The perfect recipe for wretchedness consists of continual negativity mixed with a healthy helping of convincing yourself you’re oppressed. But, cheerfulness — deliberately and daily choosing joy despite circumstances — leads to abundance. <—Tweet This! And, not just any bounty, but a continual feast.

I don’t know about you, but I could get used to that.

So, I say:

“I’m glad you decided to pick up takeout tonight for dinner because you deserve a break.”

“You are right where you need to be today, and I’m proud of you.”

“You’re not perfect, but that’s ok. We’re all works in progress.”

“You are pursuing your dream, with your God, and that’s all that matters.”


This post was shared gladly with Holley Gerth’s God-sized Dream Team and Jennifer Dukes Lee’s Tell His Story:

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  1. Preach sister! He’s not 5′ and Italian, but I know that voice. And Deep Thoughts? STOP THE MADNESS!!!
    Love you, girl-thank you for this word.
    Peace and good to you.
    Chelle recently posted..Rest (Five Minute Friday)My Profile

  2. I love that verse!! I am going to write it down and carry it with me today. My negative tape sounds very similar, and it truly never lets me get a break. Your words were perfect for me today because I let myself sleep in and as I woke up I was doing my usual berating of myself…but no. I needed that sleep. The time change + getting up at 5am daily + having a hard time falling asleep equalled one tired mama. When the alarm went off today, I turned it off. And slept THREE more hours! Thank you for these wise and timely words!
    Amy Corley recently posted..he loves me wellMy Profile

  3. Well that verse just went on a note card on the prayer board in front of my desk. I’ll see it every day. This post is why we’re friends. Let’s both tell that voice to jump in a lake. We like our dusty baseboards. (And if you ever need to feel better, message me, I’ll immediately take a picture of mine and send it to you…I guarantee you’ll feel better. Bahahahaha! I could name mine and take them for a walk.)
    Christine Wright recently posted..A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to a DreamMy Profile

  4. That is a perfect scripture verse! And I am so glad you decided to start treating my friend better, like she deserves;) Great post, Elizabeth!
    Mandy recently posted..Papa FrancisMy Profile

  5. Beautiful verse. Perfect more of. Me too.

  6. Oh, those negative thoughts are soo much like the ones I hear in my head!! thank you for sharing that verse with us, dream sister!!
    Julie Anne recently posted..Five Minute Friday: RestMy Profile

  7. What beautiful thoughts…thank you for sharing. As I was reading through your words, I thought about a period of time recently that was really, really hard and full of self-doubt. It helped me to take time each day to slow down and simply count the good things in my day, the small things, the reminders of why He loves me. It’s something I still try to do, at least in my head, every day…and sometimes I write them down. 🙂 Elizabeth, I just love reading your space…blessings, sweet sister!
    Mel recently posted..Five-Minute Friday: RestMy Profile

  8. I’m catching up on your posts:) This kind of honesty is what drew me to your blog (what feels like!) so long ago. I am so grateful when women share. It takes a brave-by-God heart to do that. My internal dialogue is so, so similar. You are so where He wants you Beth! Thank you:)


  1. […] While the skit pokes fun at affirmations — with Stuart often breaking down into a whiny, negative mess — I’ve been coming to terms with my need for more affirmation and less negativity. […]

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