Talking to Yourself is a Good Thing by Cindy Stradling CSP, CPC

We’re all aware that positive feedback from others helps to motivate us and make us feel good about what we’re doing. But, have you ever considered how you make yourself feel based on your inner dialogue? The way you talk to yourself is more powerful than any words said to you by another person. That’s why it’s critical to monitor the way you talk to yourself and to work on a positive and motivating inner dialogue.

Many of us never even stop to really listen to the dialogue in our heads, even though we subconsciously hear it all day long. More importantly, many of us are filling our heads with negative talk, as though we always expect the worst of ourselves. In fact, many of us speak to ourselves in a way we would never speak to others.

To improve your self-talk, it is important to begin listening to it in a conscious way. Write down the things you say so that you can begin to see the pattern of thoughts in your head. If you find yourself saying things like “That’s something I’m not very good at,” or “I bet I made another mistake,” or “They probably won’t like me”; you have a problem.

Once you’ve identified negative phrases that you use, write down the counter to those phrases. When you’re tempted to think people won’t like you, remind yourself that people have every reason to like you. Replace those negative comments with positive ones. You’ll soon find that you’re a happier person and that you have more energy and are able to accomplish more in the day, simply because you believe you can.

Even if you don’t actively talk down to yourself, it’s likely you can benefit from creating some positive and uplifting messages for yourself. Write down some things you want to accomplish or some things you like about yourself, and repeat these ideas throughout the day.

The messages we hear over and over in our heads have a powerful effect on our self-esteem and our mood. In many cases, when you become aware of the negative thoughts in your head, it’s easy to see why you give up easily or often feel unworthy or defeated. You might be amazed at what just a few weeks of positive self-talk can do for you in terms of helping you realize how capable you really are.