You know your inner mean girl? That voice that tells you:
- how much you suck
- that you aren’t good enough
- how ugly you look
- that you should be ashamed of yourself
My guess is, you think that the path to inner peace includes getting rid of her. Because it’s human nature to want to banish anything that causes us pain.
And you’ve probably even seen some pretty quotes on Pinterest advising you to tell that voice to shut the fuck up.
We fight fire with fire.
Exchange an eye for an eye.
What goes around comes around and all that.
And here is what I know for sure:
It feels kinda good at first. Getting revenge. Fighting back. Staking claim on the landscape of your mind.
And it might even work for a while.
But eventually, she comes back with a vengeance, screaming louder than ever before. And so you shout back.
Round and round we go. Never really getting anywhere.
We wonder if she will ever just be quiet.
To your wondering, I respond: no, my dear, she won’t.
Um, huh? I thought banishing her was the point?
Not so much.
Here is the thing: your inner mean girl has your best intentions in mind. She is trying to keep you safe. From ridicule. Exile. Banishment from the tribe.
More than anything, she wants you to be loved. She wants you to belong.
Our needs for love and belonging go far beyond what our neighbor thinks of how often we cut our grass, finding the perfect group of friends, how much money we make, or the size of our thighs.
Back in our caveman and cavewoman days, if you were banished from the tribe, you could guarantee that death was imminent.
Without love and belonging, we don’t survive.
The drive to stay alive is where your inner mean girl is coming from. She believes that death by rejection is on the horizon at all times.
With this in mind, I have an invitation for you. The same invitation I’ve given myself:
Be kind to your inner mean girl.
She is a part of you, after all.
And none of your parts deserve mean treatment.
Not even the mean and nasty parts.
Not even the shameful bits.
Not even the deepest, dirtiest secrets.
All of your parts deserve love.
So, I’d invite you to look at her honestly. Honor her for who she is and what she wants for you.
Instead of telling her to fuck off, invite her to the table. Let her speak her peace. Allow her to express herself. Take time to understand her and love her up.
And then, with love and compassion tell her that you see her.
You hear her.
You appreciate her input.
You respect what she is trying to do.
Thank her for coming and let her know that she is welcome at the table.
Notice how that feels in your body. Notice what shifts inside you of as you choose compassion, for even the parts that you’ve deemed mean, ugly, and wrong.
Notice what happens when you love all of your parts.