“According to Madam Pomfrey, thoughts could leave deeper scarring than almost anything else.”- J. K. Rowling
I think anyone who has struggled with their mental health can relate to the idea that sometimes your thoughts can cause as much or more damage than a jab to the ribs. The old adage “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” seems to fall short when those words are coming from your own brain. The idea that words cannot hurt you is misguided at best. The words and stories that you tell yourself help mold your self-image. If those words are hurtful, then it can have a significant negative impact on your life.
What do you tell yourself?
Think of the stories, thoughts, or words that you tell yourself as a weapon that can have lasting effects long after their said. Does that change what you say to yourself? Does it change how you see yourself and the challenges you have faced and overcome? It is far too easy to dismiss thoughts as fleeting or meaningless. However, they can be pervasive and long-lasting. They can leave deeper scars than an appendectomy.
Scars are silent; they’re for your brain only. So, when you are reflecting on the struggles you may face, remember that your thoughts have consequences. Like behaviors, they can also be changed. There is hope! You can change the way you think. You can be kinder to yourself and start to mend the scars that the negative thoughts left behind. This quote came at a time where the whole gang was sitting in the infirmary having major wounds tended to. Not all of those wounds were on the outside. Harry had just lost an important person in his life and realized that he and his friends are now in more danger than ever before. He spends this time beating himself up and even at one point says that he does not want to be human if it means feeling this bad. The thoughts he has are certainly more hurtful and damaging than that broken arm from falling during Quidditch and will take more time to heal (spoiler: it takes about 7 books and a play).
Changing Your Thoughts
Therapy is a place where you can bring out those thoughts, examine them, figure out where they are coming from, and why they are having a negative impact. These scars are something that with time, work, patience, and some good ole’ self-compassion can be mended. A stronger, more resilient, capable you grows from those scars.
If you are ready to approach your thoughts with a questioning mind or would like more information on how you can grow, please feel free to reach out to Amy Wine Counseling Center at 832-421-8714. We would love to accompany you in learning new ways to be the best you.