Strategies to Cancel Negative Self-Talk

Self-talk, also what the professionals call inner dialogue, is the conversation you have with yourself. The narrative of this convo can make the difference between inner peace, empowerment, and achievement—a discussion with the power to make or break your ambitious self.

It can do this with the subconscious and conscious beliefs that started in our childhood. Often instead of nurturing our potential to grow, we tell ourselves that we are inadequate or are falling short somehow. And we want to use this conversation to succeed so that we persevere when we encounter obstacles. 

Here are some easy ways to reframe your self-talk:

Plan ahead

Have alternatives ready for the conversations you want to change. Make a list of short affirmation statements to replace your old put-downs. Next week I will talk about clap backs to negative self-talk.

What are your options?

It could be that you have been speaking negatively to yourself for so long it may have distorted your perception. In this case, you need an arsenal of options to get you through those moments: self-help books, apps, journaling, videos. Surround yourself with available material to help you bounce back quickly. This is also where your peers are valuable. How do they respond to conflicts and setbacks?

Depersonalize situations

Accountability is always a good thing. It only makes sense when the item or event was under your locust of control. Events have multiple causes, and beating yourself up for the outcome is abuse. Only take responsibility for your actions.

Develop compassion.

Be kinder to yourself than you are to others. If you would be hesitant to insult someone else, why use those harsh words to yourself!

Be Patient

Changing our self-destructive habits takes a lot of repetition, considerable time, and commitment. Over time you will notice the decrease in negative framing until it's completely gone. It's a process that will not happen overnight.

Here are a few strategies for adjusting your self-talk:

Nothing like the present

The only time when you can take action on a thing is NOW.

Focus on present moments instead of replaying the past. I read something once before that mentions not to anticipate the future. Women are often natural or assigned caretakers, which takes a fair amount of planning and organization. So anticipating the future may be too deeply rooted to address immediately. I believe it will diminish in smaller pieces as we continue on our journey.

Whats your MF name

According to research addressing yourself by your full government name is quite effective. It's said to make the conversation objective. I think that you are demonstrating respect to yourself that you expect others to have. It's similar to being kinder to yourself, only saying that you owe yourself the same respect as well.

Look in the mirror

The same sentiment applies to looking yourself in the mirror—your message hits different when you communicate while looking yourself in the eye. Talk to yourself as if you are talking to another. You deserve the same body language as well. Most of us grew up in a culture where standing in front of the mirror calling for the boogeyman was a game. We believed it enough to be fearful, and even for a moment, it worked. Yet as we struggle through adulting, we never thought to say "I'm the shit!" or "I'm remarkable" in the mirror five times. Go figure!

Create reminders

Reminders are where your planned arsenal comes into play. In this way, you will always have cues and scripts if needed to speak to yourself with kindness. Use them. Your peers are valuable here as well. Share your time with those who empower and support you.

Speak out loud

Affirmations are o be said out loud. I read somewhere that you should do this in private. But we need to normalize people minding their personal space and not others. Say it when you need to. Say it out loud when you want to. It may feel awkward at first. I'd be willing to bet it's because we worry about what others will think. I guarantee you if you begin to say affirmations out loud to yourself, others will soon follow suit. Until you get comfortable with this, record a few encouraging messages on your phone. This way, you can listen to them anywhere, at any time.

These strategies will easily have you enjoying a happier and more fulfilling life. Use the conversations you have with yourself to uplift and guide your ambitious self.


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