3 ways to break the grip of chewing gum words

As a single again person it’s most likely you have had negative words said, probably screamed at you. In the heat of an argument the ‘you blames’ and derogatory names erupt, slinging not only mud that dirties but an arrow that pierces.

The ‘you blames’:

  • You never listened to me
  • You were always going out with your friends
  • You’re a bad mother
  • It’s your fault

The ‘you blames and ‘derogatory names’ are a form of domestic violence. The White Ribbon Foundation, an organization working in a primary preventative role to change the ‘attitudes and behaviours that lead to violence against women,’ says:

Verbal abuse includes angry yelling but it also includes cold statements designed to humiliate a person. Verbal abuse includes:

  • name-calling
  • continuous criticism, swearing and humiliation in public or in private
  • attacks on a woman’s intelligence, body or parenting
  • yelling’

The focus of this blog is not to remind you of those words but will label them for what they are  – verbal abuse which is a form of domestic violence. If you need assistance speak to a counsellor/your local doctor or if you are in Australia contact 1800 Respect on 1800 737 732 https://www.1800respect.org.au/

The focus of this blog is to break the grip those words had on you and especially to get you to think about how you speak to yourself now. Have some of those words attached themselves to you, like chewing gum to your shoe as you try to walk into your new life? Are they keeping you anchored to where you’ve been? Do you have to pull hard against their sticky resistance to move forward?

Just like your mum probably had a few tricks for removing chewing gum, there are some tricks to breaking free from the words of your past.

3 ways to break the grip of chewing gum words

The last blog looked at changing your perspective about how you think. This is closely linked to how you speak.

  1. Talk nicely to yourself

The words you say have power.

For Christians, we believe in the power of the spoken word. God spoke and the universe was created. Jesus spoke and people were healed, waves were calmed.

Back to you. Ever heard your mouth say things like ugly, stupid, failure, nobody would want you? But who are you saying them to? You’d never speak to a friend like that! So why do you say horrible things to yourself?

Don’t repeat what was said about you or to you.

Change the way you speak to yourself. You can be very deliberate about doing this. Years ago, my counsellor helped me write a list of affirmations to speak every day. Speaking them to yourself means you wire them into your brain once as you’ve said it and the second time as you hear it.

Create positive affirmations and display them in places you frequently visit (fridge, mirror, back of toilet door) and speak them out.

Click here for Christian affirmations ‘I am loved by God’

  1. Build a new identity that is not based on what was said about you.

You are whole. You are a complete person. You are not missing ‘another half’. You may need to rebuild your self-esteem – click here for 10 steps for rebuilding shattered self-esteem.

I believe as a Christ follower your identity comes from being a much loved child of God. You have immense worth to Him.

  1. Forgiveness

Down the track when you are safe and having some calm return to life, you need to forgive the person who said ‘you blames’ or derogatory names, to free yourself from the power of their words over you. This applies even if you’ve experienced domestic violence, however you DO NOT have to do this in person or even contact the person who spoke the words. Always be safe. You can write a letter that you don’t post or speak your forgiveness to a chair imagining them sitting there. It doesn’t matter whether they hear your words or not. This is about bringing healing to you – I explain more about this in for 7 ways to help you process forgiveness

Putting legs on it

Write yourself a list of affirmations and speak these out every morning.

Display words of affirmation where you can see them frequently.

What’s one step you can take to rebuild your self-esteem?

Photo credit: Ryan McGuire stocksnap.io

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