As a social worker, I’m a big advocate of using strengths based thinking when working with clients. Basically, that means focusing less on what’s not working and focusing more on their abilities, resources and capacity to solve their problems.
Often I need to remind myself to take my own advice. I need to ditch the negative self-talk. Women are great at being their own worst enemy, telling ourselves; I’m not pretty enough, thin enough, good at my job, I’m not doing enough, giving enough, being enough.
I saw this in practice with a friend of mine the other day. My friend is talented, beautiful, godly, passionate, dedicated to helping others, giving of herself and a million other amazing qualities. She’s one of the most beloved people in my life. She’s also looking for a job and during what is a hard time already; she’s beating up on herself and telling herself that she won’t get employed.
This is just crazy because she is amazing. And I’ve told her this but again, I need tot take my own advice. This is no different to how I think about myself. I am just as tough. I need to give myself a break.
I’ll be applying for jobs in a few short months when we leave Tonga and already I’m worrying – what if no one employs me? What if I can’t find a job? What if I’m not good enough? What if employers don’t like me?
I’m great at encouraging my friend (and she is great at encouraging me) but we suck at encouraging ourselves. We tell ourselves that we are failing, something we would never say to each other.
So, to my beautiful friend, to all the amazing women in my life, join me in remembering this:
I vow to be as gentle with myself, as I am with other people.