OT - Women Wednesday
I don't know about anyone else, but I'm hard on myself. Hard? Pfffft; more like downright BRUTAL At some point in my life, I decided that if I'M meaner to me than anyone else, their words won't hurt as much. Instead of talking myself UP, I've been talking myself down. In a way, I'm mentally abusing MYSELF. That is SO jacked up. Who else is a self-abuser??
But we women also tear each other down. Why? Is it jealousy or envy? Her body type is better. Her hair is longer. She has a nice tan. She doesn't have zits. She has those cute dimples. Is it some subconscious, ingrained mean girl code that causes women to view other women as rivals? I picture a pair of cavewomen checking out a mighty hunter and one pushes the other into a steaming pile of T-rex poop just before she flips her hair and bats her lashes. Fast forward to pioneers and one female secretly dumps some meadowsweet or crushed rowan berries into another woman's cooking pot. Fast forward again to present day and horrible makeup tips or telling someone an outfit looks great - when it's awful and it's an outfit with a woman hiding somewhere inside - instead of helping her find something flattering. And the cattiness...MEOW.
Okay, maybe it is NOT a subprimal urge to come out on top and get a man (or woman). Insecurity? We think she's better so, instead of imitating or striving to be better, we try to tear her down so she's "not so great" any more. We want what she has. Instead of getting our own, finding something comparable; lie, cheat, steal, hurt, tear down.
Years ago, my sister and I were a mean girl club of two. That's not to say that we went around saying hateful things to women or tried to hurt them and we certainly did NOT try to take what they had. No, we sat with our heads together and whispered or talked on the phone about a woman's faults or her awful taste in clothes or .... MEOW.
But I didn't stop there. My mean girl picked the easiest target available: ME. I beat the stuffing out of myself. And I was utterly ruthless. NO ONE could say anything to me that was meaner or nastier than what I said to myself. Nice comments and compliments did not matter because Mean Aniki wouldn't let them. They said that to be nice, but it wasn't actually true. Because you are NOT good or smart or pretty or <insert complimentary adjective here>.
Awhile ago, I decided I wanted to try and banish my inner bully and, in doing so, would hopefully banish that ugly, seemingly inherent desire to be mean to others. What a challenge! I've spent decades of beating myself up. And when my body changed (all of those fun menopause things), I found it much more difficult to find myself lovable because I most certainly was NOT beautiful or thin or... and there I was, yet again, looking for every negative thing I could to tear myself down.
Experiment time! I needed to go shopping for nice clothes instead of hiding behind my veeeeery extensive oversized t-shirt collection and told Mean Aniki she was not welcome. NOT easy and she came along anyway. BUT... Instead of trying on an outfit and saying, "gads, you are a fat pig!" I mentally bit my tongue (okay, I actually bit it for real), said, "that's not very flattering", and looked for something else. Not-So-Mean Aniki ended up with a new wardrobe that was flattering. There is certainly something to be said when you feel good about yourself: less depressed, more confident in my appearance, smiling more. My friends noticed and said how good I looked. One girlfriend even told me how sexy I was! DH, that sexy beast, must have taken some new vitamins because he's even more attentive. MeWOW!!
Are you a self-abuser? Are you your own worst enemy? Is your inner mean girl riding shotgun wherever you go? Is she carrying over into other aspects of your life?
Well, tell her to take a hike! No, you are likely not your idea of perfection (and that's probably kinda skewed), but you ARE beautiful in your own way. Build up your inner NICE girl. I bet you'll feel better. xoxo