‘We are our own worst critics.’ The negative inner voice we have in our heads can be incredibly damaging to our mental health and overall well-being. It can lead to feelings of worthlessness, anxiety, and depression. How often do you catch yourself trash talking about YOURSELF?
Negative self-talk can come in many ways. It can sound like: ‘I’m not that good enough.’, ‘I can never do this!’, ‘I will never succeed!’, ‘I am a failure!’, ‘I am an idiot.’ or ‘I fucking hate the way I look!’, ‘I will never be enough for someone to love me.’, ‘I’m so ugly!’. Basically negative self-talk is an inner dialogue which only limits your ability to believe in yourself and evolve.
It’s a very toxic and unbearable cycle. It leaves you scarred for a long time, until you learn how to heal your inner self. Think about it this way, what if your friends would talk to you the way you talk to yourself? What if everyone treated you the way you treat yourself daily? It would be a nightmare!
How to minimize negative self-talk
Understand the underlying causes of negative self-talk: It can be caused by a variety of factors, including past experiences of failure or trauma, societal pressure to conform to certain standards, and perfectionism.
Recognize negative self-talk and combat it: Start by observing your inner voice and noticing when it becomes critical. Consider whether your ideas are supported by facts or assumptions, and make an effort to refute them with proof or different viewpoints.
Embrace self-compassion: Be kind and understanding to oneself, just as you would a good friend. Recognize that you are not alone in your challenges and that everyone has flaws and makes mistakes.
Create a positive environment for yourself: Seek out individuals and pursuits that will help you feel good about yourself. Spend as little time as possible with depressing people or in settings that make you think negatively.
Take care of yourself: Make sure you’re receiving enough rest, exercise, and good food. Prioritize self-care and schedule time for enjoyable and relaxing activities.
The benefits of neuro-linguistic programming (NLP)
Have you ever heard of neuro-linguistic programming (NLP)? NLP is a psychotherapy that aims to improve communication and personal development. It also emphasizes the importance of language in shaping our thoughts and emotions. By becoming more aware of the language we use to describe ourselves and our experiences, we can begin to shift our thinking in a more positive direction.
One of the main techniques used in NLP for combating negative thoughts is called ‘reframing’. Reframing involves taking a negative thought or belief and reinterpreting it in a more positive or constructive way. This can help us to view our experiences in a different light, which can lead to more positive emotions and behaviors.
Another technique used in NLP for combating negative thoughts is called “anchoring.” Anchoring involves associating a positive emotion or feeling with a particular sensory cue, such as a touch or a sound. By associating positive emotions with these cues, individuals can train themselves to automatically feel more positive when they encounter these signals in the future.
Remember that it’s not always simple to break negative self-talk habits, but with time and effort, you can rewire your inner dialogue to be more uplifting and encouraging.