The start of a new year is a great time to reflect and reset. As you reflect on 2017, do you recognize the changes in your life? Surely there were some good and some bad experiences. Perhaps your character was strengthened; maybe your hope was defeated. Was your patience tested, your confidence challenged? How did these thing affect your how you feel about yourself? Experiences are a big influence in our identity, but they do not need to define us. Perhaps this is why I love new beginnings so much. There have been many times in my life when I have allowed experiences in my life to become who I was.
After experiencing a divorce, I took the identity of “throw away wife” and was not able to build another healthy relationship until I was able to find the truth about who I was.
Some experiences require an identity check in order to move on. It is not wise to risk your heart for a future relationship (or job, location, etc) when it is still wounded from a past one. We have a choice in how experiences affect us. They can defeat us and deter us from growth, or they can become our personal exercise program as we work through the difficulty and become stronger for it.
By nature, most of us are terrible at recognizing our own identity. We are far too gullible and allow the words and actions of others–or our interpretation of them–to become our personal truth (often a twisted-Truth). I am not the only one who has accepted someone else’s wrong as my own. You may have had a sister call you ugly. Should her anger define your beauty? Maybe you grew up neglected or abused, or perhaps your happy family broke up, does that make you less valuable than the Cleaver family?
I believed I was a throw away wife for a season, this kept me from trusting others and from sharing my heart, but that did not make it true. The truth was that I was a wife who’s husband didn’t value her. That truth was ugly enough; I was a fool to allow it to make my whole world ugly for so long.
The good news is, new beginnings can happen for anyone who is willing to reconsider what they believe. No matter how much of your truth is ugly, your world can become beautiful again if you take the time to reflect and reset. Perhaps the best way to start this new year is to ask yourself these questions:
What do you believe about yourself?
How much of this is true?
As an author and speaker, my passion is in helping women and girls overcome confidence conflicts, especially those involving rejection, betrayal and loss. After 30 years in the beauty industry as both a cosmetologist and an image consultant, I love to use my profession, along with my experiences and training as a Biblical life-coach to help others struggling. If you want to make difference, too, would you become part of this movement and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linked In, Goodreads or consider having me speak at your next event. Visit http://catrinawelch.com for more information.
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