A woman, head in hands, sits depressed on the forest floor

Stop Talking Smack About Yourself...What you say to yourself you'd never dare say to a good friend. ~Jen Coken

I used to be the queen of making negative comments about myself. Kind of a weird thing given I’d been coaching other people to stop doing that for years. 

But you don’t always realize what you are saying to yourself until someone else you are living with hears you and addresses it.

There I was standing in front of my full-length mirror after getting dressed, smoothing out my hips attempting to straighten the curves I’d been born with and had never been proud of. My then husband caught me doing this one day and asked me what I was doing.

“I just wish my thighs were smaller and my hips weren’t so big,” I whined.

“First, women are supposed to be curvy,” he said, "second, stop talking smack about my best friend Jen.” His reply stopped me dead in my tracks. No one had ever said that, in that way to me before.  

Whether it is complaining about the way we look, calling ourselves stupid or silly, or comparing ourselves to someone else and coming up short – we are all guilty of this behavior.

We all know negative self-talk is not “good,” so why do we keep doing it?

What we say to ourselves we’d never dare to say to a good friend.  

If we did have something to say to a friend we’d say it in a gentle and compassionate manner that was constructive, even if it was something difficult to address.

So why are we not more compassionate with ourselves? I think it is for the same reason it is so difficult to keep a promise to ourselves. No one is watching. No one is listening.  No one is witnessing our behavior.

But I want to assure you that someone is.  

You are watching, you are listening, you are witnessing your own behavior.

That’s a problem. You are the most important person in your life because you are the one who is here on this planet, in this lifetime, at this point in history to make the difference you came to make.

Every time you criticize yourself you are chipping away at your own magic. Don’t discredit the phenomenal human being that you are. You don’t deserve that. The rest of the planet doesn’t deserve that.

We need all of your awesomeness!

So, next time you catch yourself making those negative comments, tell yourself: “Quit talking smack about my best friend (FILL IN YOUR NAME). Instead, love yourself by complimenting yourself and telling yourself what a great job you are doing – even if you don’t believe it right away. You do that often enough and you’ll start to interrupt old patterns by replacing a bad habit with a good one.

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About The Author

Jen Coken's picture

Jen Coken is an author, life coach, and comedian who wants to live in a world where you’re free to be yourself and achieve your soul’s purpose—a vision that has driven her work as a Coach, Speaker, Author, Comedian for more than 20 years.

Drawing on three decades of experience as a non-profit leader and grassroots organizer, Jen helps CEOs and entrepreneurs overcome their self-made limitations and do their heart’s work.

But Jen’s impact doesn’t end there: She spent six years on the Denver stand-up comedy circuit and brings a sense of humor to every topic she addresses, including the experience of coping with her mother's diagnosis and death from ovarian cancer.

Jen’s book, "When I Die, Take My Panties: Turning Your Darkest Moments into Your Greatest Gifts" chronicles that experience and shares Jen’s core message that everything that comes our way is meant to teach us about ourselves.

When she’s not crafting bestselling books or speaking to audiences around the country, you can find Jen eating Nutella by the spoonful in the nearest grocery aisle. www.jencoken.com

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