Why is this one so hard?

On Thursday I was taking a relaxation class in the school where I used to teach. It was the first one I’ve done in there this school year and for some reason I was a bit nervous before I went. It was really lovely to see the children though and I pretty soon felt okay about it.

Part of every class is an affirmation activity and we were getting short of time by this stage in the session so I went for a quick and easy one. At least it’s easy in terms of how it’s carried out but not necessarily easy emotionally.

Basically I passed around a container of coloured craft sticks that I had written affirmations on. They say things like: I am loved, I am great, I am special, I am fantastic, I am brave and I am peaceful to name just a few. The children all take out one stick and then once everyone has one we take turns to read them out.

Often I find that children (and adults) in Scotland struggle with affirmation. We don’t like to blow our own trumpets or seem big-headed. We get embarrassed when someone pays us a compliment. It’s something I have struggled with at times even though it’s one of my main love languages. Weird but true.

While the container was passed around I explained to the children that sometimes we pull out a stick that is easy for us to believe about ourselves and sometimes it’s something we find hard to believe but I told them we’re going to say it out and mean it even if it’s hard. I had no sooner finished saying this than I looked down at my stick and my heart felt like it physically sank. ‘I am beautiful’. Ugh! Why did I have to get that one just after what I’d said? I had to practice what I preached and read it out anyway but it got me thinking – why is this affirmation so difficult for me? I don’t mean this in an arrogant or prideful way but if there is one thing I have received affirmation about over the years it’s the way I look. I’ve been told that I’m beautiful (inside and out apparently) but I really struggle to believe that. I can pick almost any other stick out of that container and read it and mean it – ‘I am unique’, ‘I am courageous’ – I don’t have a problem with reading those – why is this one so difficult? It’s weird too ‘cause I kinda crave affirmation that goes deeper than looks – but that’s another story.

I haven’t figured it out yet. I don’t actually have an answer to my own question. I know there are certain areas that I lack confidence in and other things that I feel I can say because I know that they reflect what God says about me and when I say them from that perspective I feel okay about them. I’m just not sure why this one is so hard?

Are there particular affirmations that you struggle to say or believe about yourself?

How do you feel when other people compliment or affirm you?


19 thoughts on “Why is this one so hard?

  1. I have an insane time accepting compliments myself. It’s a weird thing but I have a hard time saying thank you to people and I’m not entirely sure why. Or it could go to the total extreme of me thanking too much. It’s really strange because I just feel I don’t deserve to accept credit for most things nor think I am good enough for certain tasks. I’ve gotten a lot better over the years and struggle with this a lot less than I have had in prior years; my teens to be exact.

    Thanks for the insight and thoughtful posts.

    Have a great weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice post.Positive affirmation repeated daily before sleep and getting up in early morning is nice remedy to train our subconscious mind.On long it is the subconscious mind that is trying to turn into reality.That why we have to be very much careful about our thoughts and what we are feeding our mind.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Our society here placed in our minds that “beautiful” was akin to being a Barbie Doll. Despite the fact that we know intellectually that’s insane, physical beauty is still a measure that seems important. If someone looked at me and said, “You’re beautiful” I would back away slowly to avoid the lightning bolt. Like you, I’m comfortable with knowing that I’m kind, compassionate, caring, loyal, sometimes even courageous. But beautiful? Nah!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh girl, do I ever feel ya!

    I had the most interesting conversation with a new friend last week. While on our walk, she asked me if I ever feel I have to make myself smaller to be accepted by people. I thought it an odd question at first and would have answered, “no,” but then when she continued on explaining how when we’re physically beautiful or possess a desired skill, that we sometimes become less to make others feel more comfortable. That! That I definitely do. I belittle my skill, my ability, my looks so as not to appear prideful and/or not to make others feel as if they lack. I realize as I write these words how arrogant they may, at first read, sound–definitely not a true representation of my heart.

    I’ve often wondered what it would be like to fully accept all of me—to acknowledge my beauty, my skill… and live confidently; to live like I’m loved. I am after all. As are you. The Lord, our Creator, made us exactly like He wanted us to be. How it must grieve Him when we look at His skilled craftsmanship within ourselves and think it’s not good enough. Sigh! I’m on this journey with you, my friend. Great, thought-provoking post—as always. 🙂


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Karyn. You’re right! God made me this way. He made me good enough. That has always been a hard one for me but I don’t want to grieve Him so I’m trying to believe it. 🙂


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