Have you ever been on the front page of your local newspaper? I don’t mean as a cute baby in the Easter Parade, or for having committed some terrible crime, or for being awarded a prestigious prize, but as an adult, and just because you were happy?
I was, and here’s the proof:
A Dream Fulfilled
Well, that was me a week ago. It all began so innocently, while I was on a mission to fulfill one of my fantasies. Now, we all have dreams, but for me (and perhaps for you), that’s what many of them have stayed: dreams. But then . . .
A Sweet Experience
As I was chatting on the street during what passes for spring in the Adirondacks, a snow shower—yes, it snows with the sun peaking out periodically, and we all get giddy because, well, there’s some sun—I mentioned to a friend that I would love to be in a maple syrup tasting. For those of you who don’t know, I have a massive sweet tooth. And I love to cook. I have long thought that different maple syrups have different tastes, but I’ve never put in the energy to line up a couple and, well, sip.
That’s when my friend told me of a tasting at the Lake Placid Conference Center the next day.
Caught on Camera
I happily entered the great hall and made a beeline for the maple syrup tasting, smiling politely to the food vendors as I almost jogged to my goal. I was a woman on a mission.
Once there, I found eight different syrups, all portioned in one-teaspoon servings, all for the tasting, and we could even vote for the one we liked the best.
It was so exciting. I was surprised by the taste of almond in one, a deep caramel aftertaste in another, more bitterness in a third, and too much sweetness in a fourth. Since I had to cast my vote, I took this very seriously, savoring each encounter, all with a huge smile on my face.
Along came a reporter and began asking if he could take pictures of me and my fellow tasters. We all agreed.
But Wait—Am I Ready for This?
Suddenly, a girly thought popped into my mind. Yes, like you, I have internalized these corporate images of beauty into a swirly negative self-talk. I thought:
- I’m not wearing any makeup.
- I’m wearing my glasses.
- I’m warm because I haven’t taken off my coat; is my face sweaty?
- Oh, my hair! What does my hair look like?
Don’t Let Girly Thoughts Ruin a Good Moment
But I didn’t care. I was so happy, and probably at this point on a slight sugar high, that I just beamed, as you can see. Being so tuned in to how ridiculous and delightful this whole experience was allowed me to tell my girly thoughts to take a hike!
Let’s start a conversation. Share your story of how your joy allowed you to overcome your girly thoughts.
You’ll find more ideas for getting rid of your negative self-talk in my latest book, The Girly Thoughts 10-Day Detox Plan: The Resilient Woman’s Guide to Saying NO to Negative Self-Talk and YES to Personal Power
Patricia A. O'Gorman, Ph.D., is a psychologist in private practice. She is noted for her work on women, trauma, and substance abuse and for her warm, inspiring, and amusing presentations that make complex issues accessible and even fun. She has served as a consultant to organizations across the country in preventative and clinical strategic planning. Dr. O'Gorman is a cofounder of the National Association for Children of Alcoholics, and she has held positions ranging from director of a rape crisis center to clinical director of a child welfare agency, and director of the division of prevention for the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). She is a veteran of numerous television appearances, including Good Morning America, Today, and AM Sunday and is the author of eight books including: The Girly Thoughts 10 Day Detox Plan (2014), The Resilient Woman: Mastering the 7 Steps to Personal Power (2013), and Healing Trauma Through Self-Parenting (2012) 12 Steps to Self-Parenting.