I have written about self-talk before. It is such a part of how we see ourselves. Yesterday it dawned on me that it was time for me to take inventory of the things I have been saying. I woke up anxious for no apparent reason and when I checked in with my “gut” there was still no reason to feel that way other than the fiction in my head. Therefore I reached out to a hypnosis friend of mine and she assisted me in making a change from stinking thinking to nurturing thoughts. It is time for me to practice mindfulness in my thoughts.

I realized that as I awoke, my thoughts were busy trying to get work accomplished and I hadn’t even lifted my head off of the pillow. My husband awoke with loving thoughts. Even the puppies woke up looking for belly rubs.  Next, looking in the mirror I was far too quick to look at my bedhead instead of my smile. I realized that I have been critical of myself if I don’t get done quickly enough. I am not living in a pressure cooker, other than the one I had created for myself.

Becoming aware of self-talk

Now I stop and notice what my thoughts are. If the things I am thinking are not kind or add value to my day, I will change (even challenge) them. If I notice my bedhead first, I will laugh and think, looks like you had a great night’s sleep! If I make a mistake, I think how can I learn from this experience and stop berating myself.

Take a moment and ask yourself throughout the day, what are the things you say to yourself?  During those quiet times, maybe when driving or waiting for someone and you have that chatter in your head. It’s your inner voice speaking to you.   What is that voice saying to you?   When you forget something, what do you say to yourself?  When you realize you have made a mistake, what do you say to yourself? Are you kind, funny or compassionate?  Are you encouraging, uplifting?

If you are critical, negative or hard on yourself, ask yourself why. If you wouldn’t speak to a friend or loved one in the same tone, then it is time to change that tone. Would you allow a stranger to speak to you that way? If not, then it is time for change. We teach others how to treat us. If we are busy being nasty to ourselves, how can we expect any different from others?

How we speak to ourselves is reflective in our posture, facial expressions and even our tone of voice. Our mood sours when we are nasty to ourselves. No one wants to be around a sour puss. Furthermore, it is natural for us to want to be right. So if our self-talk is negative, we create a self-fulfilling prophesy. Remember that all powerful subconscious mind. It hears and obeys.

Thought: I am so forgetful!

Response: Subconscious mind blocks a memory.

Thought: I am so fat

Response: Subconscious mind goads us into emotional eating or skipping exercise.

Begin to notice your thoughts. Notice the negative ones and think in terms of a healthier thought. Write down the new thought on an index card you can keep handy. Next time you find yourself going in the direction of negative, pull out the card and read aloud the new healthy thought.  Read it aloud three times to really plant that new concept in your mind. In sessions I will often compare the subconscious mind to fertile ground. Whatever we plant, will grow. If we plant flower seeds, we get flowers. If we plant poison ivy seeds, we get poison ivy. Whichever seeds we nurture will flourish. It is time to put that negative self-talk in the trash bin and take the positive encouraging self-talk and place it where it will get lots of attention and grow.

self-talk flower

Take a moment now to think how you want to live. How do you want others to speak to you? What do you want to feel about yourself? Now imagine that those words are petals of a beautiful flower that you are growing. Look over in your mind’s eye those petals, see those thoughts flourish and breathe in the fragrance of beauty. You could put a picture of your favorite flower on the index card where you have written the new thoughts. That way every time you reread the positive thoughts you also see the flower. Soon, all you will want to do is stop, take a deep breath in as if you were breathing in the scent of that flower and the good thoughts will start to roll!