Sometimes I feel self-doubt creep in and start to question myself. Have I really grown? Am I refining myself like I need to? How am I changing into a better person? Most of the time when I start doubting myself, it’s because I have allowed outside circumstances to dominate my mind and time. One of the best ways to stop myself from heading into a tail spin is to define ways I’ve changed and grown. So I think I’ll do that this morning.
1. I’m learning from my mistakes.
We all make mistakes, but we don’t always learn from them. I’ve been working very hard on learning from the mistakes I made. Mostly, because I don’t want to repeat them again. If I mess up, I want to pinpoint where, why, and how it happened because I don’t want to do the same thing again. There’s always a lesson in every mistake, if I dig deep enough to find it.
2. I’m taking responsibility for my own actions.
It would be incredibly easy for me to take on a victim role and start blaming other people for everything I think is going wrong in my life. But I have learned that blaming others not only covers up the heart of the problem, but it causes me to become blind to areas of my life I need to work on. I am responsible for my own life. Nobody can force me to say or do anything I don’t want to. If I mess up, it is my fault, nobody else’s.
3. I’m learning to be in control of myself.
Accepting responsibility for my actions holds hands with me being in control of myself. If I can’t maintain a level of self-control, it’s a lot easier to point the finger of blame at others. This is one area that I still am working diligently to refine because it’s one of my weaker qualities. It’s so easy to jump to conclusions or be defensive (and sometimes I still am). I pray many times throughout nearly ever day for God to help me to control my thoughts and my tongue. I know if my mind is under submission to God, my tongue will follow. Best of all, my heart will remain in the right place as well. Self-control is a powerful tool against Satan.
4. I have more self-respect.
There was a time when I had absolutely no self-esteem. I felt worthless and empty. It took some time, but I built a foundation of self-esteem. There are times when I still struggle with it, but that does not nearly plague me like it once did. I know that I am a good person, with a good heart, no matter what anyone else says or thinks about me. And because I’ve learned this, I have begun to build a tower of self-respect in my life. I’ve learned that when I don’t respect myself, neither will others.
5. I’m learning how to stand up for myself.
When I married Robert, he was the first person in my life that ever truly loved me unconditionally. He made me feel loved and protected, like nothing in this world could ever hurt me again, because he’d be right there to make sure I was protected from all ugliness. Because I’d never felt this measure of trust or strength, I came to rely on him a little too much. I depended on him to fight my battles for me, and take up for me. While that’s okay, and I believe a husband and wife should form such a partnership, I really needed to learn how to stand up for myself. Inside, I’d been a scared little girl my entire life. With this second deployment, though, I am learning that I am not that little girl anymore. The things that once stood in my way and loomed over my head don’t hold that power anymore. I am a strong woman, deserving of respect. And I know now that, while it’s nice to know Rob has my back, I can take care of myself, too.
How have you changed and grown over the last few years?