Converations with Ourselves

Self-talk is something that everyone deals with, but almost nobody talks about. It is what tells us what we can and cannot do, leads to whether we have a good or bad day and so much more. It can be a long-running dialogue (mine is like this most of the time) or just small thoughts throughout the day.

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How does Self-Talk affect you?
Many of us have not-so-great thoughts about ourselves- maybe not everyday, but definitely from time to time. Sometimes these thoughts become overpowering and it’s not an easy thing to stop. It’s hard to decipher what exactly creates that change- it can be a failed project at work, a breakup, anything that makes you feel negative about yourself. It can be from things that stayed with us from childhood.
When we have constantly bad thoughts about ourselves, we start to talk to ourselves badly.
“You can’t do that.”
“No way you can fit in those jeans. You’re gonna look like a hippo.”
“It’s not happening today. Nobody wants to be around someone who is like Eeyore.”
Get the idea? I’m pretty sure just about everyone reading this has had similar thoughts. I had something similar thoughts to the second example before trying on leggings, and I did not look like a hippo.
Negative self-talk will drag you down eventually. It can make any existing mental health issues worse, potentially trigger one (as in if you were struggling with an anxiety issue and have issues with negative self-talk, it only gets worse.), or just makes you not feel great about yourself in general. This can lead to looking to others for acceptance from others, which is not always healthy.

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How can you change your self-talk?
As with many habits, it takes time, and that isn’t always easy. Neither is changing your thought patterns. Even after two years of therapy, I still struggle with this. My therapist has had to remind me many times to “reverse action”, which means acting in the opposite way than I really want to. (This could be its own blog post.)
Steps:

  1. Acknowledge that there is a problem with the way you talk to yourself.
  2. Figure out what you want to tell yourself.
  3. Find quotes, affirmations, song lyrics…whatever helps to inspire change.
  4. Stop yourself when you can. It’s hard to catch yourself in the beginning of a change in habit, but the more you pay attention to the things you tell yourself, the easier it will become.
  5. Find replacements. Instead of negative phrases, find new, positive phrases to tell yourself.
  6. Find the root of your unhappiness. Maybe it’s time to talk to someone? That can be a friend, family member, etc. It’s good to explore your thoughts, especially when it has to do with your happiness.
  7. Be nicer to yourself. I have a hard time with this one, but I have learned to laugh at myself when needed. I used to get so upset with myself when I burned dinner. Now, I just make a backup or have my husband bring something home. When you stop being angry at yourself, the load you carry becomes a smidge bit lighter.
  8. Self-care helps. When you care for yourself physically and mentally, you tend to feel better about yourself.

I don’t always have the answers but I certainly have ideas. This is just one thing that you can change to be a healthier person.

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26 thoughts on “Converations with Ourselves

  1. Ellen @ If It Brings You Joy says:

    Nothing good comes from negative self talk. Learning to become conscious of it is key. Good tips for becoming more positive about yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lily says:

    I’m finally getting good at #4, catching myself when I start having those negative thoughts. I haven’t been able to consistently find positive replacements yet, I’ve been thinking negatively about myself for so long it sometimes feel like there isn’t anything good to say. Thank you for this. Even though I know all of these things, it’s always good to have another reminder when it comes to self-talk.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. laurenedwards20 says:

    This is so important! I find myself becoming doubtful with myself more than anything. I often worry about future situations that are out of my control, thus making me anxious. Like you’ve pointed out, I’ve been making a conscious effort to be aware of my thoughts and not let them get me down. I’m trying to have a more positive outlook and be hopeful for the future.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. jenniferwise4heritagemakers says:

    This is a great post! Self-compassion is a concept I learned about a few years ago and strongly believe in. Why aren’t we as kind to ourselves as we are to EVERYBODY ELSE?! I love how you said that negative self-talk will make existing mental health issues worse. I hadn’t thought of that. I get seasonal depression (winter blues) and I just hate those months. I think negatively about myself, and I often think it’s because of the depression, but this is such an interesting thought–negative self-talk makes the existing condition worse. Conversely, focusing on positive self-talk and self-compassion may make the depression not quite so bad! Great thoughts. Pinning for sure. 🙂 #wanderingwednesday

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Michele says:

    Self-Talk is something I’m working on. Why is it so easy for us to judge ourselves so harshly? I find that when I’m intentional with my self-care and watching what I’m saying to myself, I’m a much happier person.
    Thanks for joining #WanderingWednesday!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lori says:

    I’m a huge fan of self-talk! It is for sure hard to train our brain and redirect the negative when it tries sneaking in, BUT it is possible! Great list of ways to try redirecting those thoughts! I’d love to read the specifics in another post!

    #WanderingWednesday

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Tidbits and Crumbs (@TidbitsNCrumbs) says:

    Hi! Found you in Wandering Wednesday! Love that quote about the negative committee, had to pin it. I am still developing a little habit that would fit on your list. Every time I start replaying something unpleasant in my head, I banish it with some very specific questions that I ask myself. The key is they have to be questions, not statements or affirmations, because questions send my mind off thinking in another direction, a more positive direction.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Nicole from Colleke Creations says:

    Hi, here another Wednesday Wanderer 🙂
    Love your post here. The thing I struggle with is I’m not in very a good shape physically. I want to sport and train etc. but I’m not so nice to myself and take the time for this self-care. And every time I beat myself up about it. Maybe it’s time to tell myself I can do this, even though I’m out of breath after 5 minutes!

    Liked by 1 person

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