I love this quote from Robin Sharma: “Words can inspire. And words can destroy. Choose yours well.”
It is easy for us to be kind and careful with others. It is good manners to speak politely to other people, and we naturally treat others with dignity and respect. We choose our words well when we speak to others. Rarely do we raise our voice. Rarely do we use negative or blame words (Unless we are in an argument! And then we generally apologise once things have simmered down.) We will never purposely aim derogatory comments, physically or emotionally denegrating words and aggressive behaviour towards someone in public or in private. It is just not acceptable behaviour, is it?
I wish I could say we treat ourselves with the same care.
When I coach people back to confidence, the biggest issue to overcome in most cases is the nature of the self talk that has become a behaviour pattern. The subconscious mind cannot distinguish between reality and fiction. It is programmed to react to the stimuli from outside as a self defence mechanism. So the subconscious believes everything we tell it, whether that is “Run, there is a dinosaur attacking me!” or “I am not going to have enough money to pay the rent”. The physical and emotional reaction of fear, anxiety and eventually – stress, is exactly the same.
Now imagine saying these words out loud to another human being, in public:
“You are such a failure”
“You are horrible and fat”
“You don’t deserve to be loved”
“You will never be forgiven, you are so guilty”
“You don’t deserve food so I am not going to feed you”
“You are rubbish at your job and will never be successful”
“You deserve to be punished so I am going to force feed you”
If these statements where used against another human being, they would be regarded as bullying, judgemental and cruel. Yet these are the things we tell ourselves every day, quietly, all day.
This consistent internal abuse leads to depression, disease and disorder. Human beings do in fact have the ability to think ourselves dead. And self-talk like this is at the heart of it.
Do you listen to your own self talk, and believe some of the stuff you tell yourself? It’s not easy to ignore that badgering inner voice!
But what if that same internal voice spoke in another tone, and used other words:
“You are going to be successfull”
“You are beautiful and I love you”
“I set you free from punishment. You are forgiven”
“Eat as much as you like. You deserve it”
“You are great at what you do! I am proud to know you”
Remember, the subconscious doesn’t know the difference. We choose what and who we become by the words we choose to speak to ourselves. We choose how we feel and how confident we are by the quality of the conversations we have with ourselves. Whether those conversations are planned and structured, as in a therapy session, or just the natural chats we have with ourselves all day long – The words we use define how we think and feel.
Next time you find yourself indulging in negative self talk, consciously try to change it to something more uplifting and positive. See how much better it makes you feel. Then keep doing it. And only ever believe the good things and positive self talk.
Soon, this new postive self talk will become your behaviour pattern. And you will be amazed at the beautiful things that come your way when you stop believing yourself, and start believing IN yourself!
Back to blog