Anyone who has been raised by or married to a narcissist most likely has trouble with self-esteem. My colleague and expert on narcissistic abuse, Karyl McBride, titled her book “Will I Ever Be Good Enough?”. The thought that you are not good enough, not OK, less than, stupid or weak, plagues survivors in many cases. This is an integral part of the abuse that is perpetuated on survivors; repeated attempts to make them feel like failures. Because the narcissist is empty himself and usually suffers from crushing self-loathing, they project this onto their victims in order to defend against experiencing their own internal feelings.
Aside from narcissistic abuse, we live in a society where criticism is common. A recent study showed that between kindergarten and 12th grade, we are criticized 16,000 times. This finding is astonishing and breaks down to being criticized over 1230 times a year, 102 times a month or 25 times a week! These criticisms can be big or small, purposeful or careless, significant or insignificant, constructive or destructive. But it’s a tremendous amount of negative energy coming toward all of us.
Negative criticism has the power to destroy our self-image. Affirmation is one of the ways to restore it. Affirmation is a vocalized statement of the truth. Affirmation is the repetition of truth verbally and mentally which eventually penetrates the superconscious and then we can actually KNOW the truth about ourselves intuitively. The human mind is both an instrument of bondage and freedom. But we need to learn to control our thoughts and focus on the truth in order to obtain that freedom. We become victims of narcissists and maintain that victimhood, in part, because we allow unreasonable criticisms to penetrate our consciousness. It’s not difficult to become comfortable in our supposed limitations and feelings of not being good enough.
For all survivors, it is important to introspect and discover what is the most influential negative thought pattern that is holding you back. Find an affirmation that addresses that issue or make one up yourself. Practice that affirmation daily until it becomes part of your consciousness. The affirmation that I use daily and post on my computer is: “I live in the assurance of truth within. In my inner Self, and not in the opinions of others, lies true victory”. I can also suggest reading “Metaphysical Meditations” and “Scientific Healing Affirmations” both by Paramahansa Yogananda.