Would you talk down to your friends or family like you sometimes talk down to yourself? The answer in likely “no, because I care too much about them, and I don’t want to hurt their feelings.” Then why do you talk like that to yourself? David Taylor-Klaus said, “Words matter. And the words that matter most are the ones you say to yourself.” Many underestimate the power of positive self-talk and don’t realise that it builds confidence and paves the way to living a happier life. When you think positively your optimism barometer rises which relieves stress and provide a few other health benefits.
What is self-talk?
Self-talk refers to your inner monologue. It is what you say to yourself and the way you talk to yourself whether it is good or bad. It influences your mindset and thoughts either positively or negatively. When you ‘positive self-talk’, you channel your thoughts to always see the good and positive in a situation pertaining to yourself. How you view yourself, your body, your image, your IQ, your skills etc. The conversations you have with yourself will ultimately influence your confidence, mental and physical health.
5 Ways to Self-talk and Think Positive
Positive self-talk will help you take better care of yourself and love both your own strongpoints and weaknesses. Eventually you will view your weaknesses as areas of improvement. Noel Brick said that “Effective self-talk strategies can give us a greater sense of control over our doubts, worries, and fears.” But how?
1. Learn to focus on what you say, not only to others but to yourself.
“Self-talk reflects your innermost feelings”, said Dr Asa Don Brown. Most of what you say to yourself happens without you even realising it as it is hard to provide yourself with positive thoughts all the time. But try to take stock of your thoughts and what you say to yourself and others. Take regular pauses and refocus on what you say and how you say it. For example, saying “There’s no way I will succeed” rather think and say to yourself “I can and will give it my best, and my best is good enough.”
2. Take charge of how you feel every day.
Advice from Germany Kent, “Convince yourself every day that you are worthy of a good life. Let go of stress, breathe. Stay positive, all is well.” Learn to restrain yourself from negative thoughts and self-talk, by taking charge of how you view each day. Be grateful for all you have. Try see the good in every situation. Don’t compare yourself to others. Find the humour in every situation. You are unique and special in your own way. But you need to take charge of how you feel and control what you think. Don’t take everything too seriously, especially yourself.
3. Don’t live in the past.
Obsessing over the past won’t get you anywhere. What is done is done and there is nothing you can do about it. Many people who live in the past, get consumed by guilt feelings and fixate on what went wrong and why. This spirals into negative thoughts and you start breaking down from the inside. Learn to accept it, let it go and rather focus on changing the things you have control over in future and accept the things you can’t control.
4. Distance yourself from negative people.
“Don’t hang out with people who are: Ungrateful, Unhelpful, Unruly, Unkindly, Unloving, Unambitious, Unmotivated or make you feel Uncomfortable” advises Germany Kent. Positivity is contagious and if you surround yourself with people who build each other up, rather than breaking one another down, your own positive affirmations will manifest in your thoughts and in the way you talk to yourself. Negative people will drag you down with them.
5. Learn how to embrace success and accept failure.
First, believe in your ability to succeed. Then, commit to yourself that you will succeed. When you succeed, celebrate, and own your achievements! But when you do fail, don’t let it keep you from trying again. See it as a steppingstone to get up and try again. Don’t fear failure. Adopt an attitude of learning to explore and discover the reasons for your failure. Then, use it as building blocks to build an amazing staircase to future triumph. Get back on that horse as soon as possible.
In the words of Darlene Lancer, “Don’t be a victim of your thoughts” and how you talk to yourself. Shad Helmstetter explained in his book, ‘What to Say When You Talk to Your Self’, that “The brain simply believes what you tell it most. And what you tell it about you, it will create. It has no choice.” You are in control. You have the power over your inner monologue.