“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

So says the inimitable Abileen at the start of The Help’s movie version of Kathryn Stockett’s best selling novel. What a message Abileen is giving to the little Mae Mobley Leefolt. Repeated and repeated every day, she is giving the toddler ways to describe herself. Putting words in her mouth? Maybe. But definitely making a lasting, positive impression that can carry her through as her life progresses.

What if we had been raised to say those words every day to ourselves? Were you?

If those are the messages you got from your mother, grandmother, aunt, a beloved housekeeper, or anyone else in your young life, congratulations! You are among the luckiest. Do you still greet your day that way? Knowing you are kind? Smart? That YOU are important.

What do you say to yourself when you look in the mirror every morning? Think about it. If you don’t talk to yourself the way you’d speak to your best friend, you might want to change the conversation.