1. “Lessons” Instead Of “Mistakes”
You do not have to punish yourself for lapses in judgement. You do not need to replay events in your head thinking somehow that will make them better. Instead, look at misunderstandings as the lessons they are. The smartest scientist didn’t get the experiment right the first time. They depended on trial and error, educated guesses, and gambles. No one is perfect. No matter how irredeemable you believe your actions are, you can have a new beginning. You cannot guilt-trip yourself into being worthy enough. It’s time to let go of the past. You’re already living with the consequences. There’s no need to suffer more than you already have. It’s time to reflect, apply the lesson, and grow from your experience.
2. “Consistent Action” Instead Of “Love”
Love is an action. Not everyone who says, “I love you,” does. When you stop accepting behaviors that make you feel like an afterthought, you gain confidence. You start feeling secure in relationships when words match action. Love is a principle. It’s time to stop calling every fluttering in your chest love. It’s time to look for consistent action. You’ll stop getting your heart broken when you pause. Slow down. Look beyond your emotions. Look beyond the sexual tension and empty promises. Consistent action is tied to an individual’s values and character. Look for someone who keeps their word, speaks to you with respect, and loves to see you smile. Discerning character takes time and exposure to different environments. Before you call it love, look for consistent action.
3. “Advocate For” Instead Of “Victim”
Past experiences can shape the direction of your future, though you don’t have to be defined by those experiences. You are a whole being who experienced a traumatic event. It is not your identity. Most likely, you’re an advocate against what happened to you and for what you believe in. You might even use your experience to find a renewed purpose in life. We don’t celebrate ourselves enough for the experiences we’ve overcome. Celebrate how far you’ve reached. Recognize the courage in your heart. You are not a victim. You are an advocate for what you believe in.
4. “Adapted To A Lack Of The Right Resources” Instead Of “Strong”
People say you’re strong. They don’t realize you were forced to be. Strength is a muscle repeatedly exercised because of a lack of the right resources. Sometimes you need to call it like it is. If you weren’t strong, you wouldn’t have gotten as far as you did. Strength was your only choice. Strength is an adaptation. You weren’t meant to be strong for this long alone. Strength is not an indication that you shouldn’t receive support. You are strong because you adapted to a lack of the right resources. You’re also allowed to receive all that you want and need.
5. “Passionate” Instead Of “Too Much”
You aren’t too much. You’re passionate. You care deeply. You give your all to those you love. You are reserved with many people, but you do not hold back when you find the people who move your soul. For some, they say you’re too much. You’re too honest. You’re too raw. You’re too real. How can you be anything else? It’s time to stop hiding in shame. It’s time to start accepting who you are. You’re not too much. You’re passionate, deep, and beautiful. Those who truly see you will embrace that.
6. “Overloaded By” Instead Of “Anxious”
Anxiety means you care. Caring means you can still feel in a world that’s numb and void of emotion. Anxiety can be terrifying. You’re overloaded by feelings you don’t know what to do with. Your anxiety isn’t a death sentence, though it can feel like it. You’re capable of taking control of your overloaded mind and body. You are capable of redistributing your senses. Take deep breaths, redirected thoughts, and practice. Your anxiety is not your downfall. It’s your roadmap to the things that are important to you.
7. “Dependable” Instead Of “Cold-Hearted”
You value principle. This means you don’t always do what’s popular, but what you believe is right. People call you cold-hearted when you just don’t like pretending. You don’t like making promises you can’t keep. You don’t small talk when it feels inauthentic. People call you cold-hearted when it couldn’t be further from the truth. You don’t have many close friends, but you’re there for those who are. Some mistake your matter-of-fact nature as unemotional, but you’re steadfast and responsible. You do what needs to get done because sometimes principles are more important than feelings. You are far from cold-hearted. You feel deeply and care.