How to Let Go of Negative Self-Talk
Do you wake up already punishing yourself for not getting up earlier? Are you constantly telling yourself that you aren’t good enough? Does constant negative self-talk beat you up throughout your day?
A surprising 80% of our thoughts are negative and another surprising 95% of our thoughts are repetitive.
What does this mean? It means we are all prone to the negative, especially when it comes to ourselves. It also means that we likely often repeat these thoughts each and every day - solidifying that we just don’t think we are good enough.
While many people blame their external world for their problems, this often isn’t the case. A lot of it comes down to perspective and our interpretation of our reality.
And if any of this sounds familiar, I’ve got news for you: You are good enough. You just have to start believing it. Reading this article is a great start.
What is Self-Talk?
Self-talk is our inner voice or internal monologue. You know the one - it pipes up when you are thinking or debating something. It stages fake arguments and conversations in your mind. It helps you process the events of the day and problem-solve.
But it also can quickly become your worst enemy.
Imagine that inner voice as a devil and angel on either side of your shoulders (yes, we’ve all got one of each!). The devil tends to be a little louder than the angel. It tells you that you look awful in that new jacket or that you really shouldn’t have said that to your boss.
Imagine the trope of an angel and a devil on your shoulders. While the angel often speaks of the goodness and truth of the situation, the devil can quickly drown out anything the angel may have to say. It’s easier to give in to the negative, especially when we are comparing ourselves to what others have.
When we slip at self-love or are unable to show up for ourselves, it can often feel like a failure. Yet, practice makes perfect! Positive self-talk takes time and conscious effort to maintain, just like any other skill.
Related Article: How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
Is Self-Talk Healthy?
By now, you might be viewing self-talk as an inconvenient part of life, however, this is so far from the truth. There are pros and cons to it and most of the time, you just have to know how to use it.
Positive Self-Talk Can…
- Improve life satisfaction.
- Enhance your immune function.
- Decrease physical and mental pain.
- Improve your cardiovascular function.
- Promote overall physical wellness.
- Reduce stress.
Negative Self-Talk Can…
- Decrease your motivation.
- Decrease your confidence.
- Increase stress.
- Increase mental and physical pain.
- Suppress immune function.
Like most things, there are two sides to every story: Positive self-talk is extremely beneficial, meanwhile, negative self-talk can drastically impact your quality of life, health, and happiness. The negative side can cause issues within and also in your surrounding relationships.
Surprisingly, our effect on the world around you all comes down to which one you decide to participate in. In other words, switching from negative self-talk to positive self-talk is well within your control.
Grab hold of that steering wheel! Your life is 100% what you make it.
Negative Self-Talk Defined
Before we dive headfirst into how you can quit your negative headspace and jump on over to a more positive one, let’s look at negative self-talk a little bit closer. When you understand it more, you may be able to counteract it with more ease.
Negative self-talk reduces the number of possibilities we can perceive, kills our creativity, and lowers our vibration. All of which will attract negative people and experiences into our lives.
Examples of negative self-talk include:
- “I’m not pretty/smart/intelligent/funny enough.”
- “I’m so stupid/dumb/unintelligent, I couldn’t even get that right.”
- “I can’t do that.”
- “I’m not worth it.”
- “People don’t like me.”
- “My opinion isn’t relevant and doesn’t matter.”
Basically, negative self-talk is any internal dialogue that limits you and stops you from achieving your full potential. When it comes down to it, you simply might not think you’re good enough, but how you talk to yourself forms those beliefs.
If you engage in negative self-talk, you’re going to have a hard go of it. You’ll find you repel people or attract insecure people which will lead to unhealthy relationships. Even if you’ve had bad relationships in the past, you can shift this starting right now.
Let’s Make A Change!
You have so much to gain when you let go of the negative and focus on the more positive side of yourself. You’ll stop creating a hierarchy of people in your mind and you’ll understand you deserve to be treated right. You can speak your mind, stop obsessing, and start loving life.
And yup, positive self-talk might feel super unnatural at first. Yet, it allows us to align ourselves with similar high-vibration people who bring positivity and joy into our life. It involves an ‘I am worthy’ and an ‘I can’ approach to life.
When you make it a point to change your neural patterns and the ways you think subconsciously, you’ll find life opens up for you. You’ll have more opportunities. You’ll find freedom where you love yourself and your life. You’ll find you stop caring what people think and they will start to enjoy your company much more.
Imagine not worrying about what you’re wearing, how your hair looks, or what type of impression you’re making! The freedom of letting go of negative self-talk has an infinite number of benefits.
Change your perspective in 10 days with this Negative Attitude Detox.
Techniques for Letting Go Of Negative Thought
So, how can you finally quit the negative self-talk train?
1. Recognize Your Critic
In order to change your negative self-talk, you have to catch yourself. This is step one in changing things up and stepping into a more positive light.
For instance, don’t say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t say to your best friend or close family member. Would you tell them that they look huge in that shirt? No! So, don’t do that to yourself.
Test this: Next time you feel yourself going down the negative rabbit hole, take a moment to breathe and evaluate your surroundings, then look at it from another perspective. To address your inner critic, consider, would you say these things to a close friend? If not, it isn’t something you should be saying to yourself either.
2. Remind Yourself That Not All Thoughts Are Reality
Things aren’t always as they appear, especially when we become caught up in our thoughts and feelings.
Once you recognize your critic, take steps to recognize those feelings. When you feel that negative self-talk creeping up on you, address it, and work on strategies to overcome. The answer isn’t simply “that’s not real,” because we do not want to invalidate our feelings. Instead, let’s acknowledge how we feel and search for the root of it or even strategies to turn the feeling around.
Find something that grounds you in reality and focus on breaking the bad feeling/association to building something new.
3. Challenge Your Critic
Once you’ve recognized it, addressed it, rerouted it, now it’s time to challenge it. The work we put into ourselves should continue even when we aren’t in a low spot. Explore why you feel this way, take notes to bring up to a friend or a therapist.
Challenge these thoughts by considering: Is it true? How? Why? Is there an alternative perspective that this critic isn’t seeing?
This is a great technique to make negativity disappear and help you jump back into reality - and out of your head. There is always a positive side to life (sometimes, it’s just a little harder to find).
Focusing on Positive Thinking
It’s time to lean into the positive and start embracing it. By doing so, you can finally begin getting what you want out of life, but how can you become more positive?
First up, challenge yourself to find two positive things about yourself each and every morning. Keep a journal and write them down. When you feel negative, look at your list of positives.
Your brain takes about an average of 21 days to form a new habit so make reminders to yourself however you want by putting little notes around you’ll see or have reminders pop up on your phone. Get art that inspires you to be self-loving, have conversations with your close friends practice gratitude daily. On top of finding positives about yourself, practice appreciation for the life you have.
Your self-love is now a priority and a major part of your life. Yell it from the mountain tops! Carve it into your consciousness and make it the pillar of your well-being and self-love practice.
You deserve love and internal appreciation: Let’s Learn to Love Ourselves Within.