I have a sign in my speech room that reads, "People by and large become what they think about themselves." I saw it in an office and after further research discovered it is attributed to a psychologist named William James. So when I refer to myself as fat, slow, old, inept, I reinforce it and become fat, slow, old, and inept. The Annie I talk about is not the Annie I choose to be. I say "choose" because I do have a choice. In order to be loved I must love and that includes loving the person God created in me.
While it can be a challenge to embrace myself, warts and all, if I do, I set an example for my children and my students to accept themselves. How much happier could I be, could we all be if we stopped battering ourselves with unkind words?
On a particularly self-deprecating day, I was leaving work and found a note with a Hershey kiss attached. It was from my young, wise speech assistant. She wrote, "You are beautiful. Just the way God made you." Oh sweet girl your words brought tears to my eyes and helped me realize how I portray myself to the world! Today is the day it stops! So, hello world, it's me beautiful, funny, brilliant, loving, buxom Annie! If you happen across this post I challenge you; say to yourself, your family, students, colleagues, everyone out loud, "I am beautiful! Just the way God made me!"