Positive Self Talk

What is positive self talk? It is when the voice in your head builds you up instead of putting you down.

I talk to myself all of the time. Right now as I write this, I’ve got a voice buzzing like a bee inside of my head. At this moment, I hear:

  • A narration of what I write.
  • The dog whining next door is going to make my dog bark.
  • I wish the sun would come back; the breeze is a bit cold.
  • Oh, the sun is coming back, yea!
  • Am I hungry? What is for dinner?
  • What am I going to write next?
  • Does this sound okay?
  • I do not hear each thought for long. It is just fleeting background noise to the main focus, but nonetheless, it is there.

    If you listen closely enough to this voice, you can gather an overall tone: negative, critical, positive, encouraging, emotional, sensitive, stoic, angry, etc… I have a feeling that the tone in each person’s head matches the energy and experiences in their life.

    A valuable exercise is to listen to your self talk as a 3rd party. You will notice that the voice doing the talking shows up as an entity separate from what we identify as the “I” in “I am,” the observer.

    I remember a while back, when I was serving on the board of a charitable organization, we were planning for an upcoming auction to raise funds. The Chair of the Event Planning Committee stated that each board member should bid and donate a generous amount of money to encourage others to and show our support for the cause. Immediately, my self talk got very loud and exclaimed:

    “I don’t have that kind of money right now. I want to be generous, but I can’t. How much will I have to give to look generous?”

    The tone was negative. My self talk was really saying:

    “There is not enough to go around, so I have to hoard what I have. I cannot give any away. I believe in lack.”

    At that time in my life, that statement was very true of my belief system. However, I had been working with affirmations and observing my self talk as a 3rd party. What happened was very interesting. Moments after the negative self talk commentary about donating started, I consciously realized what I was doing. I realized how automatic those statements came when triggered, and since I realized that, I was able to interrupt them with positive self talk. I believe it went something like this:

    “That is not true. There is plenty to go around. I am abundant and I have the means to be generous. I choose to let that belief go. I do not have to have that reaction. The world is a generous and prosperous place.”

    When you recognize and observe your negative self talk, you give yourself the opportunity to intercept it. Once intercepted, you can replace it with positive self talk that is conscious and purposeful. Do that enough and the negative self talk will become faint and eventually die out to a stronger more positive voice.

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