I’ve been making a concerted effort to pay attention to the things that I say to myself in my head. Now I realize that that sentence makes me sound a little “Looney Bins” but go with me on this one. I’ve been trying to notice the word choices that I make in my inner monologue. I’m a word snob. I love the way that different words feel in my mouth and sound echoing through my head. Words are so powerful and as Mark Twain said:
So I’ve been paying attention to my word choices. This introspection was brought about because I realized that I kept calling myself a dumbass. I forgot to put more paper in the printer before printing – “Dumbass!” I accidently hit the 30 second button instead of the 1 minute button on the microwave – “Dumbass!” I grabbed the wrong book off of my nightstand – “Dumbass!” I tried to send an email before I put in the recipient’s email address – “Dumbass!” And so on and so forth. My days were filled with one dumbass quip after another. Here’s the funny thing; I don’t believe that I’m a dumbass. Quite the opposite. I know that I’m very intelligent. I’ve been accused of being elitist much more than I’ve ever been accused of being dumb. So why call myself that? And why put up with that?
If anybody else treated me like that, I wouldn’t associate with them. I wouldn’t want anything to do with them, and quite frankly I would probably think that they were an asshole. So why do I treat myself in such a way that I would never tolerate from anybody else? In fact, I would never treat anybody else like that either. I was basically being an asshole to myself. Good times! So I’ve been working on that, which has been quite the task because calling myself a dumbass has apparently become an ingrained habit. So my inner monologue has sounded something like this:
“Dumbass! Shit! Stop that!”
“Dumbass! Don’t say that!”
“Dumbass! Stop being an asshole to yourself!”
“Dumb . . . hah!”
“Dum . . . well what am I supposed to say?”
“Du . . . Argh!”
“Genius! Hey, that works better.”
“Genius . . . well if I’m saying it sarcastically, isn’t that just as bad as dumbass?”
“. . .”
“. . .”
It’s a work in progress, but I am determined to be as nice to myself as I am to others. And yes, my inner monologue does tend to swear like a sailor. One of my many quirks.