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Self-Talk and the Power of Inner Dialogue

With the last couple blog spots focusing on Fear, Bravery, Courage and Strength along with Personal Boundaries I wanted to dive into that relentless inner dialogue we have with ourselves daily, aka: self-talk.


Isn’t it interesting how a great part of our lives focusses on external communication? We grow up learning what not to say to elders, never to speak to strangers, if you grew up with authoritative parents perhaps you learned to remain silent unless spoken to.


In adolescence many teens replicate communication styles of their peers. Later in life we learn about effective communication in the workplace, business writing skills, how to create sales pitches and teach others using slides and handouts. We learn about persuasive communication, bedside manners, effective and clear chit chats with children and the list goes on.


Most of us though haven’t been taught nor given much thought about the power of inner dialogue and this my friend, is what I’m sharing today.


I've learned through my own personal life experiences and by being present and listening to others we have the tendency to self-judge ourselves a whole lot. So where does that come from?


I believe that there are four main areas:


  • Comparative Nature: A part of our ego self is always turned on and it takes a lot of work to become aware of our true self versus our ego self. We are hard wired to believe we are less-than someone else.


  • Trauma: Many of us have either been in toxic relationships or have had some type of trauma effect our self-esteem and/or self-acceptance.


  • Social Pressure: We are tuned in all the time by what our environments (online and in person) tell us about perfection.


  • Perspective: Far too often we accept perspectives before even recognizing what our own are.


Resonating yet? So, the question is: How does one unlearn learned behaviors, heal old wounds, learn new perspectives while still living in the world we do and begin learning new patterns and exercising healthy habits of self-thought?


First and foremost, the way that I look at competition is, I don’t. Now, don’t get me wrong, a hockey game is a competitive sport of skills, agility, endurance and team effort. There is a time and place for comparative nature and competition, I am speaking about the chapter of someone’s life I may have walked into. I believe everyone is on a sacred life journey and my goal is to simply be a little bit better today than I was yesterday. I believe my lane is mine to drive, steer and own. I believe too that if we cheered on one another more and recognized each other and valued our own chapters too, we would be a lot happier.


Trauma is interesting and for everyone it is different. I find that we all have a threshold too of what a mini vs a mega trauma can do to us long term. A mini trauma might be a schoolyard teasing whereas a mega trauma, years living with a narcissistic partner. The reality is though that the burden of either can still result in scaring and wounds that never heal unless recognized and worked on.

Social pressure I feel has just gotten worse and worse. I’m a child of the 70’s so when a supermodel was front and center on the cover of Cosmo, you kind of knew that she had a lot of money for personal trainers, chefs and well, maybe she was just lucky and had great genes. TV was limited to far less channels and going to the show was a treat. Today we are surrounded by a "picture of perfection" from every angle whether TV, social media and billboards and we see the end result only. No one shares about the hours in the gym, the photoshop, lighting, makeup, etc. …


In addition to this, Moms, I’m speaking to us: somehow we feel pressured to do it all often we are the breadwinners but also too in charge of all the domestic duties, maintaining schedules, cleaning, cooking, shopping, a full-time job in itself.


Men, the social pressure to be a gentleman yet also simultaneously “not hold a door open” as not to insult female strength and independence, while holding it all together (always) for fear of having one’s masculinity judged is pressure overload.


Lastly perspective, ours and everyone else's. A different version of you exists in the minds of everyone. There are a thousand different “You's out there in the minds of others and often time we feel judged accordingly …. but that’s them and not you. Which brings me to, do you even know what your own perspectives are?


A study published in 2014 found that the majority of participants would prefer an electric shock than spend 6-15 minutes alone and with their own thoughts. 67% of males and 25% of women self-zapped themselves. Shocked?


Somewhere along our journey many of us have decided not to know our true selves or maybe we’ve never been given permission to. Perhaps we’ve never looked into learning about self-esteem, self-acceptance and self-talk. Perhaps many of us aren’t aware of mindfulness and powerful practices and habits that still the mind and the internal chatter.


So, what do we do? In my personal experiences, I like to be the awareness behind my emotions and thoughts. Am I a saint? No. As mentioned above, I just try every day to be a little better than the day before. I look at the habit of awareness as a muscle, one that gets stronger with consistency and dedication.


When triggered, I recognize that there is a learning opportunity at hand. At which point, I ask myself what part of this am I:

  • Accountable for;

  • Or responsible for responding to;

  • ...and/or repairing or healing.

In other words, opposed to negative self-talk, I choose productivity. Perhaps you’d like to try this too.


Ask yourself where these thoughts, words and/or feelings are coming from. Pause and feel the sensation within your physical body, i.e.: throat, heart or stomach area. These will tend to give you an idea too from your past if applicable to a traumatic event.


Become aware, step outside of the moment and reflect. Find gratitude in the learning opportunity and even if on a scale of 1-10, gratitude sits on the 1. ~ btw ~ a gratitude attitude is another buildable muscle group.


Carve out time in your schedule for mindfulness and positive self-talk. Know your worth and where you are valued. Be particular about the company you keep. Learn to become aware of the exchange of information with self.


The older we become with limiting believes, the more ingrained they can become, but they most certainly can be changed!


Mindfulness practices and habits might include:

Exercise

Yoga

Meditation

Writing

Reiki

Tapping exercises

Visualization boards and techniques

Getting outdoors


Understanding oneself, healing, and having a healthy perspective coupled with daily positive self-talk is incredibly rewarding and is a beautiful thing. You have the power to change the algorithm of your own chitter chatter.

We believe what we tell ourselves. This proverb speaks volumes:


"Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words. Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions. Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits. Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character. Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny." - author unknown


The fact that you were born gives you permission to live your best life. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. This is your sacred life journey. Grieve a bad day, everyone is entitled to one, but focus on getting up. If there's work to be done, focus on the solution: The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on

building the new. -Socrates

Gabor Matte, psychologist, physician and author is quoted saying: “Self-acceptance does not mean self-admiration or even self-liking at every moment of our lives, but tolerance for all our emotions, including those that make us feel uncomfortable.”

Lastly: Don't suffer alone. Negative self-talk can be an issue requiring more than just a blog spot, suggestions and inspiration. Please seek professional self-help care if needed for your own personal well-being. No one should ever feel ashamed to ask for support.


Are there further topics you'd like to dive into? I have a few planned, but I'd love to hear from you! Follow me on IG to be kept in the loop and always feel free to DM me.


Blog Spot Pep Talk with Jen

In this ever-busy world of noise and chatter, lets connect deep to your inner you! Do you know what makes you tick? Do you have personal goals? Are you frustrated easily with yourself and/or others? You know that you have a life purpose but don't know where to start? I don't promise to have solutions for you; but I hope to provide you with next step thoughts and inspiration to live your non-dress rehearsal life!


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