It seems small. One word change. AND, it makes all of the difference. This comes up all of the time with my clients. "I am so fat", they'll say, & with love and gentleness, I urge, "You FEEL fat". Or, "I feel like I failed" rather than "I am a failure". Why is this so important? Because we become the labels put on us & by saying "I am..." we're labeling ourselves, our entirety of being, rather than acknowledging the transient feeling or experience.
These statements are subjective. They may feel like truth but are in fact, opinion. They're attributions heavily ladened with shame, negative self talk & negative core beliefs. They are usually seen & defined through distorted lenses through which we view ourselves & our place in the world. Now, don't get me wrong. Even if it's subjective, the experience is real. I've definitely felt fat. I've felt like a failure & that no one likes me. AND, feeling those things does not make them true.
So, the next time you, or someone you care about says "I am...", gentle correct the course and replace it with "I feel...". Honor the feeling & experience while making space for those words not to shackle you to an identity unfairly ascribed.