The other day, hatred for myself kept creeping into my thoughts. In fact, self-loathing has been especially strong the past few weeks.
A coworker gave me a helpful tip. “For every bad thought about yourself, think two good ones,” she told me.
Is that really possible? I doubted my ability to do this. However, she simplified this coping skill by having me choose two things that I liked about myself and concentrating on them throughout the day. My thoughts were that I liked my hair and love of learning.
This helped immensely even though it did not take away all of my bad thoughts. Here are some examples of how you can use this coping skill for yourself when you are struggling with negative thoughts:
If you think, “I hate my body,” instead think…
- I like my hair, smile, eyes, etc.
- My body is strong, helps me to move, helps others, etc.
If you think, “I am a horrible person,” instead think…
- I am kind, caring, funny, smart, quick-thinking, etc.
- People enjoy my humor, gentleness, hugs, laughter, etc.
If you think, “Everyone hates me,” instead think…
- Other love my jokes, cooking, sensitivity, listening, etc.
- I love my tidiness, messiness, fancy style, sweet personality, etc.
If you think, “I always fail,” instead think…
- I succeeded at getting A’s, making swim team, receiving a promotion, etc.
- My failures taught me to try harder, laugh at myself, etc.
If you think, “No one would care if I died,” instead think…
- Amanda, Morgan, Mom, Dad, Mario, Christine, Mario, etc. all care about me.
- I have my job, theater, my family, my dreams, school, etc. to live for.
What are some negative thoughts that you have, and how could you respond to them with two positive thoughts?