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Inner Voices

I was with my three and a half year old grandson recently, when he showed me a penny he had found in the sand at the back of his home. Shortly afterwards he told me he’d lost his penny and was looking for it again in the sand. I was alongside him at the clothes-line and was struck by how he was talking to himself ‘ Never give up – keep trying – there is another way and we’ll find it.’

Then I remembered a story my Mum told me about her father. Whenever she was with him and people commented on what a lovely child she was, he would say ‘Her? She’s the cull of the bunch.’ For years she would look in the mirror and try to work out what was wrong with her, what was missing. She found out as an adult, that he used to say the same about his other four daughters when they were with him.

So we tend to believe and then internalise the voices of the big people in our lives as we are growing up. Some of them support us in a belief that we can keep learning and growing, like the parents of my grandson. Others contribute to self-doubt and the gnawing feeling that we are not enough.

These negative, undermining voices can keep repeating themselves internally either consciously or unconsciously, like a stuck record. The sad thing is that we very often believe them, even though the message of the inner voice was never true in the first place.

So getting in touch with our inner voices can be the beginning of a life changing journey. If we don’t have an unconditionally accepting, loving, and encouraging relationship with our self, within which we can constantly learn from our mistakes and keep growing, life can be so much more challenging than necessary.

My grandson and other children like him, who have internalised voices that support them to believe in themselves, are indeed fortunate. They will grow up believing that they do have the power to have what they want in their life, as long as they’re not put off by ‘failing’ and they are willing to keep trying different ways until they succeed.

This will lay a strong foundation for a happy and fulfilling life.

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