I’ve noticed over the past few days that the voices (the yelling male voice & the quiet male & female voices) have been less present. We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with John’s family and enjoyed an excellent prime rib and ham dinner, courtesy of our brother-in-law. I realized late in the day on Christmas that I hadn’t heard much from the voices that day. Yesterday and today were also much less bothersome in terms of hearing the voices. I’m not sure exactly why. I really believe that the more I’m able to ignore the voices, disregard them, and even refrain from insulting them (this is sometimes a challenge!), then the less I hear them in my head, and the less intrusive they are in my life.
I still remember what my therapists always told me in the past: Don’t give the voices power. This has been so crucial for me in many different ways. That simple statement contains within it a variety of meanings. Not giving the voices power means:
- not listening to the voices
- ignoring the voices all the time
- disregard everything that I hear
- do not engage the voices in conversation or respond in any way
- do not criticize, mock or insult the voices
- do not believe anything that the voices say
This is obviously easier said then done. It’s taken me quite a few years and many hours of therapy to get to the point where I am now in the sense that the voices are no longer a major part of my life. Now they are in the background, and although I am still aware of their existence, they do not scare me anymore. They don’t threaten me, they don’t make me feel like I’m a terrible person, and they don’t intrude into every aspect of my life like they used to in the past. In other words, because I no longer give the voices power, they no longer have any power over me.