I'm slowly, painfully learning to fight back against the lie that says "I am loved because of what I do, and accepted because of how I perform."
It's a lie that I've fought against for years. And there are so many other lies that we choose to believe about ourselves.
Some are rooted in wounds we got as children from our parents, or from the kids at school, or from something a stranger said or did to us. And unless we deal with the root of the lie, we'll always be dealing with the symptoms.
| The things we believe today will become the future we live in tomorrow.
For me, two of the big things have been perfectionism and performance. But I'll talk about those two later in the post.
I believe that most of us believe lies about ourselves that we don't even realize that we're believing. It's not an inherently bad thing; it's just how life works. We get hurt, we create a false self to protect us from the pain, and through this process we move away from our true identity.
Everybody gets hurt. It's how we react to the pain that determines if we will allow it to affect our destiny.
But there is a way out! When we were initially wounded, we chose to act as victims to the wound, and put it on as our identity. Without knowing it, we became living reactions to what happened to us.
But now that we're growing up and going on this incredible and scary journey of wholeness and self-awareness and learning to love ourselves, we have to let go of the victim mentality that has protected us for so long.
We have to go on the inner journey of the heart. It's messy, often quite ugly, and never easy. But it'll be good, that much I know.
And it will be worth it.
Let's start to destroy some of the lies that have been holding us back from our calling.
Lie #1: I am loved because of what I do
Our identity should never be placed in things or accomplishments. Bill Johnson once said, "If we live by man's praise, we'll die by his criticism."
This is so much harder to live out than it seems! The world around us trys to tell us that our worth is found in what we do and the awards we have, rather than in who we are.
We are all beautiful masterpieces, each unique in his or her own way. Every single person alive has such immense value, and that value can never be measured by worldly standards.
You are born for greatness, and it doesn't even matter what you do or who sees it as long as it's what you are called to do! You are loved, period. No matter what.
You are loved. End of story!
Lie #2: If It's Not Perfect, I shouldn't Try
There's this enticing and extremely pervasive lie known as perfectionism. It's everywhere in culture. It has taken hundreds of thousands of callings to the grave.
I'm a photographer. I create things that are representations of who I am. It's the same whether you are a chef, a writer, or a fashion designer, when you create something and share it with the world, this is what you are saying:
"Here is a piece of who I am. What do you think?"
It's a deeply vulnerable thing to do. It's brave. It's courageous. But perfectionism doesn't even want us to try. It wants us to believe that unless what we create is perfect, we should forget about it and stay quiet.
Perfectionism wants us to believe that in order for us to be loved, we must first be perfect. And much like the first lie, the solution to this lies in identity.
If we know who we are, we won't care about being perfect. We'll be okay with messing up. We'll be okay with trying and not succeeding every time.
Perfectionism is beaten when we are able to have grace for ourselves in our screw-ups.
Lie #3: Comfort is more important than calling
It's easy to get stuck in our comfort zone. I'll be the first to admit it. It's fun to put everything into a neat little box that fits my neat little beliefs and lifestyle.
But comfort is not where strong men and women are made.
When we step out of our comfort zones, there we find ourselves.
We find ourselves in adversity; almost never when the going is easy. And when we prioritize comfort over calling, we will find ourselves living less than the standard we are called to.
Comfort reduces us. It holds us back. And when we are holding back, the world is missing out on what we have to give.
The world is begging for different people. Unique people. Strong people. The world is looking for you.
| We can fit in with the culture, or we can find who we are and stand out.
We need to put ourselves in positions where we're in way over our head, so that we can find what we're made of. Fight the strong urge to gravitate towards comfort and complacency.
Comfort and complacency only serve to stunt our growth. Sometimes we just need to jump all in. No holding back! Let's go!
What funny things we believe about ourselves, right? It's fun to laugh at lies. Hahaha!
We are loved because of who we are. Nothing more, nothing less. There are no buts.
You are so loved friend!! ❤
Practical Next Steps
I encourage you to go on this beautiful inner journey that I've been talking about. Take the first step towards doing the inside work, rather than focusing on what the outside looks like.