It’s a cloudy and weirdly temperatured Tuesday in Nashville. You know, that “it looks like winter but feels like thick summer” thing. So, the worst.
Luckily for me, my job does not involve the outdoors at all! I sit at my dining room table for approximately six hours a day! (Those exclamation points are obviously sarcastic because sitting for six hours a day isn’t good for your body or your soul.)
The benefit of my indoor-ness is that I can tell you lots of awesome things that are happening on the internet!
–> MY NEW WEBSITE! I know, it’s been up for about six weeks, but I’m finally getting around to telling you about it. There’s lots of info and clicky places and I’ve tried to fix all the tiny broken corners and empty spaces, but just like with any new house, there is bound to be some issues here and there. So feel free to let me know if you find something out of place.
–> I haven’t read my friend Matthew Turner’s book Our Great Big American God, but I have and I plan on it and it releases today so you should plan on it too.
–> I had a BLAST being on Jamie Ivey’s Happy Hour Podcast last week. Take a listen!
–> Today at noon central I’ll be on the Finding Balance Webcast. The password is lf032. Grab your lunch and let’s eat and chat and such.
–> Have you finished reading Let’s All Be Brave? It would be super rad if you could take a minute and leave an honest review at Amazon and/or Barnes and Noble. For people who have never read the book or heard of me, it helps a ton for them to see what actual readers say about the book.
–> You know I’m a major soccer fan. As in, there are still moments that I grieve the end of the World Cup (though my career is glad it is over because I found A LOT of reasons to “work” in front of the TV during the month of June). So I decided that I will become an EPL fan this year. (That’s English Premier League, just in case.) Anyways, some friends have invited me to become a Liverpool fan. My friend Lois lives there, so it feels right. Anyways, here’s the question- do y’all know anything about Liverpool? Help me learn.
Hope you have a great Tuesday. Thanks for your kind words about yesterday’s post. Glad we aren’t in this thing alone.
It’s been many a year that I have wrestled and worked through how to deal with the lies in my head about how God made me and who I am and how I look. It’s always been a big deal to me. Good gravy, I wrote a book about it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t still struggle.
The lies still come. Sometimes they are a whisper when I am walking onto a stage, sometimes they are a quick cut when I see a picture of myself, and other times, they scream. They scream in a way I cannot describe- they are constant and vulgar and violently unkind.
And when the lies get loud like that in my head – the ones that say I am painfully ugly, unlovablely fat, ruined, unsalvageable, disappointing, etc. – the first step, I have learned, is to invite truth in. So I stand there, or sit there, or lie there, and I say the true things.
God made me on purpose.
God loves me unconditionally.
God doesn’t make ugly.
Bible verses long memorized about who I am, how I was made perfectly, and how God treasures me.
And repeat repeat repeat.
If you’ve never struggled with self-hate, maybe this doesn’t make sense to you. But sometimes, even when you say the true thing over and over and over again, your brain cannot hear it. And for me? That’s when I know it’s bad.
When the truth, from the Bible into my mind and out of my mouth, doesn’t resonate with my heart after a few days (yes, days) of saying it, writing it, singing it, and choosing it, well… that’s bad.
It’s been that way, in recent days. Sometimes there is a trigger, an event or experience that sends me down the self-hate rabbit hole, but this time, nothing. I can tell you a few things I know- summer is usually harder because it gets hot and sweaty and it makes me feel unhappy, I can pinpoint a few experiences lately that would be knocks to any gal’s self-esteem, but nothing out of the ordinary. So I can’t tell you where it started. I just know the self-talk wasn’t working and I was falling farther and farther.
Because this has been my struggle for years (YEARS), I have learned what to do next- the next level of arsenal. Besides the yelling out to God for rescue from the onslaught, I do a few other things to mute the lies.
And so I did. On my mirror. This beautiful print from Aliza Latta now hangs in my bathroom, forcing itself on me every morning.
I did. I told my counselor this week- I spoke the lies to her, the ones that have screamed at me recently. I told her where I heard them and who was there and what I was wearing and way more detail than she could ever want. When someone else knows, it’s better.
I know. It sounds ridiculous. But for me, the farther down the self-hate hole I am, the more I sit still. So I head out, through my neighborhood, for twenty minutes or so, just to move.
I’ve been living on a strict budget this summer, so when my normal makeup ran out, I used some I found in a drawer. (I’m cheap. Sorry.) But on Saturday, I popped over to the mall and replaced the few essentials I use daily. It may sound silly, but it mattered to me. So I did some creative budget shifting, and found some moola for the makeup I really like.
And you know what? I’m feeling better. The lies are less than, and there were days this weekend when I didn’t hear them at all. I’m not mad at myself for struggling, but my guard is up now and I’m watching with a protective eye over my own mind and heart.
So why tell you this? Because I guarantee I’m not alone. I am sure, like 100% sure, that one of you reading this feels this with me. And if that’s you, I just want you to know you aren’t alone.
You aren’t alone in this fight. I’m here too. And God is with us.
– Psalm 34:17-19 (The Message)
. . . . .
(Is that how “sisters” work? You just pick? Okay. Great.)
This sisters idea is not only because I think they would look cute posing for pictures today, but more because they are two different books that share the same blood.
What flows through them both is the belief that a story can change a life.
I love this book. I think you will too. It’s a challenging read, but not a difficult read. (Know what I mean?) It’s going to push you and encourage you, but Nish doesn’t use the kind of words that make me need a dictionary or make me feel like I don’t understand what her analogy is ACTUALLY talking about. But she does use the kind of words that made me pause, take a deep breath, and really process who, where, and why I tell my stories.
I am a better writer, storyteller, and human because of the time I spent in Speak.
I can’t think of a better way for you to use your reading hours this week.
And then tell your story.
. . . . .