Do You Make This Mistake? – Learn The Art Of Eliminating Negative Self Talk

32 Comments Posted in Personal Development

Recently I find that I am getting more aware of my inner self talk. I’m putting in more effort to listen to what I am saying to myself so that I can discover whether what I am saying is empowering or disempowering myself.

Everyone have this inner self talk going on but not everyone will pay attention to it. But believe me, you will want to know what you are saying to yourself everyday. This is one of the key to unleashing your maximum potential. (If you have not get your free copy of Unleash Your Maximum Potential, you can get it here.)

Inner Chatters

So what do I mean by inner self talk? The inner self talk that is happening in you is a form of communication between you and yourself. It is basically talking to yourself about certain topics and it may be positive or negative. Depending on what you are saying to yourself, your own self talk can empower or disempower you.

If you had read the goals that I had set for myself in this year of 2010, you will know that one of my goals is to complete a marathon by the end of the year. My recent trainings have made me more aware of the inner self talk that is going on in my mind.

Recently I had just hit the 6.2 miles mark and whenever I got tired the inner chatters start to surface. Some examples would be.

  • My legs are tired.
  • Are you sure you are going to complete a full marathon?
  • How much more further do I need to go?
  • When am I going to reach my finishing point?
  • I feel like my lungs are bursting, maybe it is time to stop?
  • I’m really tired, can I just stop?
  • 6 miles is tiring enough and I still set a goal to complete a marathon?
  • Is publishing my goals on my blog a good decision? Now I can’t back off!

Notice anything? These chatters are not positive at all! They create doubts in my mind and increase the possibility of me stopping.

Your Inner Chatters

What about you? Have you ever take note of how are you communicating with yourself? Are you failing with your diet plan or stuck in the job that you hate because of all the negative inner self talk that is going on in you? Are you empowering yourself or disempowering yourself?

These inner self talks are powerful. Imagine every time when you want to start to lose weight, your inner self talk surfaced and you start telling yourself “This is hard!” or “I’m going to suffer in this diet”. How possible do you think that you are going to complete your diet and really start to lose weight? You may not even start in the first place after your negative inner self talks disempower you.

If you do not notice what you are telling to yourself or your negative self talk, you are allowing it to gobble you up. Most likely you will start to feel miserable and frustrated because you will feel that you are not growing and achieving.

How To Get Rid Of The Negative Self Talk

1. Awareness

If you are pursuing personal growth, you may have heard a lot about increasing your awareness. Because only by being aware, you can than know what is wrong and hence make changes to it.

It is the same in this scenario. If you have not caught your negative self talk yet, you may have to be more aware of it. Be more conscious of your emotions. Negative self talk usually surfaces when you are harboring negative emotions. Catch them at this time and take note of them.

2. Question.

Once you took note of the negative self talk, observe it. Ask yourself how these negative chatters are obstructing you from fulfilling your potential and how much frustration has it cause you in the past.

You have to address how much frustration and pain it causes you so that it can help you to reinforce your determination to change it.

3. Decide and Replace.

There isn’t any delete button in our mind and our negative self talk will not go away just by deciding to get rid of it. You will have to replace your negative self talk with a positive one.

Some examples;

Instead of saying “I think I can’t lose weight”, say “I can lose weight easily with the right strategies”.

Instead of saying “I hate my job”, why not say “I now know what I dislike hence I will make a better decision in my next job hunt.”

You get the picture?

You can also do something to interrupt your negative inner chatter to prevent it from happening. Whenever I am jogging and when my negative self talk starts to surface, I immediately interrupt it by saying “keep moving forward”. I kept repeating this 3 words and it pushes away all the negative thoughts and reinforce on my determination to complete my run. By repeating and focusing on my so call mantra, the negative self talk will not be able to surface.

Parting Words

Your negative self talk can disempower you and stop you from taking the action that you want. However when you turn your self talk into a positive one, you will feel much more empowered and capable to achieve the things that you want to achieve.

You want to keep yourself empowered and stay in a positive state for as much time as possible because these are the time when you can take serious action. So start today by being more aware of your self talk and turn them into positive and empowering ones.

Cheers,
Vincent

P.S: So have you noticed about the positive and negative self talk that you are saying to yourself? I look forward to your comments below.

P.P.S: If you have problems capturing your negative self talk, you can either ask me in the comment section or drop me a mail through the contact page.


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32 Responses to “Do You Make This Mistake? – Learn The Art Of Eliminating Negative Self Talk”

  1. Brian Reyes says:

    Hey Vicent,

    Great post!

    Similarly, one of my major goals is to run a marathon this year and inner chatter as you call it or self talk really helps with my running.

    I am currently at two miles and one of the smart habits that I use is incantations.

    look forward to your new articles…

    -Brian

    ~dreams with a deadline

  2. Hi Vincent.

    That inner chatter does have a large effect. We tell ourselves X or Y, even when X or Y are not helpful to us. That point you brought up about how your inner voice says that 6 miles was already hard, and that the full marathon would then be way too much, lets us know that we have to follow a plan instead of our voice at times. A plan doesn’t get weak or lose focus at times, while our voice can.

    Good idea about questioning our internal words. That is the way to find out if they are based on something valid or just based on weakness.

    • Vincent says:

      Hi Armen,

      At times our voice can get weak and lose focus and I agree that having a plan definitely helps. As long as we do not fumble when our internal voice starts to act up negatively and follow our plan religiously, achieving our goals is definitely much more easier.

      As the saying goes, failing to plan is planning to fail. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Vincent

  3. Sometimes we don’t have to replace negative chatter with positive chatter in order to eliminate our self-talk. Instead, we can use all our mental resources to remain mindfully and fully aware of the moment. If we pour all of our energy into that focus we won’t have any left-over for negative thinking.

    Great post though! You bring up a lot of very important points that people need to be more aware of!
    .-= Steven | The Emotion Machine´s last blog ..The Uses And Abuses Of Setting Deadlines =-.

    • Vincent says:

      Hi Steven,

      Thanks for dropping by. Being in the present does help to eliminate negative thoughts. Negative thoughts present themselves when we are thinking too into the future or the past and being in the present does help. Thanks for the great point and comment. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Vincent

  4. omar says:

    sometimes waking up in the morning is hard, but than i tell myself just get up and go to the bathroom and wash your face……and voila…within a minute I’m wide awake and ready to go……but my voice tells me before that, c’mon roll over and go back to bed…..i hate sleeping in….it wastes my time that i can’t get back and than i have to rush to get things done for the day

    • Vincent says:

      Sometimes I get that inner self talk that stops me from waking up early in the morning too! What I do is to interrupt that thought by jumping up of bed and do a little crazy dance and I’m wide awake. It may sound crazy, but it works for me. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Vincent

  5. Javier Chua says:

    Hey Vincent,

    I do have this inner self talk while running or performing my tasks but I think once we set our mind and made the decision to do it (eg. went ahead to sign up the marathon), we will definitely get things going. I think most important is put a commitment to it, somehow or rather we can achieve it.

    Cheers
    Javier

    • Vincent says:

      Hey Jav,

      You bet! Once we made up our mind to do something, we will definitely achieve it. That is the power of decision and commitment. See ya at the marathon. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Vincent

  6. Maren Kate says:

    Great blog! I love this post, I am at the airport going to a meeting and was trying to reverse negative self talk and instead be positive 🙂 this is a total boost for an entrepreneur or anyone. ThankS!

  7. omar says:

    also, staying present and in the moment helps me too……clears out my thoughts and lets me be who i am once i remember to stay in this very moment….in the present, i don’t know if that makes any sense to you guys, i don’t know exactly how to explain it, i apologize

    • Vincent says:

      Hey Omar,

      I get what you mean. Sometimes negative thoughts appear in our mind when we are thinking too far off in the future or the past. Staying in the present does help. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  8. It is strange how the minds works. Too often it seems to be working against us with pessimistic thoughts. When it’s such an automatic reaction, it can be tough to change. People don’t go from pessimistic to optimistic overnight.

    Vincent do you find your inner voice gives less negative thoughts the more you turn those thoughts into positive ones? You’d think that after a while your brain would get trained to naturally think positive thoughts first.

    • Vincent says:

      I had tried to replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts and also interrupting them with my mantra. So far I find that this works for me and I am able to get those thoughts out of my mind.

      I would say that the number of times that negative thoughts pop out in my mind is generally lesser. But the important thing is how are we able to cope with the negative thoughts when it pop out.

  9. Vincent, I am glad I found your site. I wish more people understood what you’re talking about here. So many times, their negative words become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    Rich

    • Vincent says:

      Repeating negative thoughts in our mind can make it a self fulfilling prophecy. I got to agree that lots of people don’t really know about this but once they know how to make their mind work for them, their potential is infinite.

    • omar says:

      I’m with you Rich…….it’s my third day here and i feel so mch better about myself!

  10. Most of the “inner chatters” I have, as I’ve observed, aren’t about limiting beliefs that I can’t do something but rather about other people. People like to make stories of other in their minds, these endless loops of “I wonder why so n so is acting that way?” or “Why hasn’t so n so called in so long?”

    Other than that excuses are a big one. I hate excuses but some days my mind makes dozens out of thin air.

    I learned something from Tony Robbins that’s very effective:
    – ask “what am I thankful for?”
    – ask “what could I do to change this around and enjoy the process?”

    Also deep breathing and changing the way you breathe really helps. It’s funny, but sooo obvious. You can put yourself into a state of panic by breathing like a panicking person. You can also put yourself in a relaxed state by breathing like a relaxed person. Hard habit to form, but it’s that 1 mm difference that changes things.:)

    Cheers,
    Clinton Skakun
    .-= Clinton Skakun´s last blog ..Measuring Your Business or Personal Objectives..Be Accountable to Yourself =-.

    • Vincent says:

      Hey buddy, I remember Tony Robbins mentioned something about 1mm can really make a difference. Our physiology can really affect our mood. The breathing example you gave is a great one. We can easily get out of our depressed state by changing our posture (I had tried this and it works!) and breathing pattern.

      Great point noted! 🙂

      • omar says:

        yes i listen to Tony’s lectures on my ipod too…….and as far as changing your posture goes, it works amazing…….it really elevates your spirit…….i recommend it to everyone weather they are sitting or walking……it helps one stay alert as well!

  11. Credit Girl says:

    Wow! 6.2 miles is not a joke! You should really be proud of yourself…by the 2 mile mark I am done. haha I will be hitting the gym today so I will be thinking about what you are saying in your post so I can keep going!
    .-= Credit Girl´s last blog ..United Central Bank Global Money Market Account Earns 1.45% APY Rate =-.

    • Vincent says:

      I believe you can do it too. Maybe just a bit of training and you will surpass me. 🙂

      • Credit Girl says:

        Okay, so yesterday I went to the gym and I still only ran 2 miles but I ran in a faster time…So hopefully today I will be able to do 3 miles and slowly progress…Sometimes when I am running, I think to myself am I really physically tired or is my mind just tired and usually it’s just my mind so that’s how I keep myself going!

  12. Zen Choices says:

    I agree with the approach of decide and replace. For all personal development, I think simple is usually better, but it can still be very hard. I fought negative thoughts a lot when I was young.
    It’s hard at first to get some momentum, but with time and a solid strategy, you can breakthrough a threshold where positive thoughts snowball. For me, it has had to do with triggering a positive attitude by working habits and automatically triggered thoughts and actions into my life.
    .-= Zen Choices´s last blog ..What Can Friedrich Nietzsche’s “Perspectivism” Teach About Interconnectedness and Judging Others =-.

    • Vincent says:

      Our action can trigger positive attitude. This is a great point! If we are able to sustain good habits and constantly take action, it will build up our self esteem and the way we feel about ourselves.

  13. used tires says:

    I’m always plagued by my inner chatters as they’re often negative. I have tried very hard to think positive but I’m just not strong enough it seems. Before going ahead with stressful undertakings, I’m almost automatically convinced I’ll fail. And sometimes I even end up doing the very things I’m constantly telling myself not to do. 🙁

    Till then,

    Jean

  14. omar says:

    i have been aware of my inner chatters for many years now….and i understand the method of canceling out your negative thoughts (thoughts turn into actions) into positive ones……i was able to overcome some fears, i excelled and felt great about myself at times….but i also fed into negative chatter that somehow always reminded me of people who doubt me and give me negative feedback based on their feelings alone and not constructive criticism……..

    i can have a good week, week and a half of staying on track and being proactive and positive, and than something happens and i get depressed because i allow my inner negative chattering to speak loud……there is always a reason why this happens, for example i get in an argument and someone i care about says something mean to me, and than it takes me a day or two to snap back out of it…..but when i am going through it it sucks so bad, because i feel like a failure at life, and i second guess myself…….

    i wish i can stay in positive frame of mind at all times, but it takes practice and i hope i get better with it.

    • Vincent says:

      Hi Omar,

      You are right. Staying positive takes practice. We don’t really need to be positive 100% of the time, if we are positive for 90% of the time it will make a big difference in our life.