The voice that we all hear the most is our own. Each of us carries on an internal narrative all day, whether we realize it or not. If that voice inside our heads is talking to us all-day, every day, it can impact our outlook on life. And if that same voice carries on a negative tone or message, it can do some serious damage. Negative self-talk can easily undermine the ability to reach our potential. So, it’s time to stop negative self-talk right now. That may be easier said than done. How do we begin to reframe our way of thinking and talking to ourselves? It’s not easy. Here are some steps to get started.
We must first recognize when a negative voice or thought enters our headspace. It may be going on all the time and we don’t even realize it. We need to begin to take notice of the negative messages we are feeding ourselves.
Before we even allow negative thoughts to take place, we can be reciting and thinking about positive mantras throughout the day. Put them up around your workspace or in places that you could use a little mental boost. I have several at work and home. You can also find great follows on social media that post inspiring and uplifting messages on a regular basis. Some of them might resonate and you can recite them to yourself.
Prepare For It
We all have our days, but if we now acknowledge the effect of negative self-talk, then we can be prepared to head it off at the pass. Can you come up with some key phrases that you can use to stop a negative thought or message right in its tracks? You can also begin to hang out with people who are positive in places that are uplifting. These same people might help you prevent negative thoughts from occurring, or could help you manage it when you do experience them.
Act On It
There are many things you can actively do that will help improve your overall mindset that may allow you to shift from a negative train of thought to a more positive one. Many of these topics I have written on already for their other health benefits.
- Exercise – of course I’m going to say that!
- Improve your eating habits. Here is a quick article from ACE Fitness on mood boosting foods.
- Sleep! We know it regulates mood and a bad mood is more likely to bring on negative self-talk.
- Build your social network.
- Read. There are so many books out there that can help you turn bad habits around. One of my recent favorites “Staying Sharp: 9 Keys To a Youthful Brain” has devoted entire sections to optimism and mental health.
- Try Yoga.
- Disconnect. Unfortunately, much of what we see in the media is very negative and can begin to impact our own way of thinking and talking to ourselves.
- Manage stress.
- Speak with a health professional.