Wow, this is a HUGE one. I cannot tell you how much I abused this. My example is my body image. I would walk by a window or a mirror and think “omg how sick”. How is that supposed to make someone feel inside? I never felt good after telling myself these things, how would anyone?
It is about learning to stop that negative self talk the moment you realize you are doing it. In my case, I still do not like seeing my reflection in the mirror, but I no longer tell my self “ugh disgusting” or “omg how sick”, I tell myself, “I am unhappy with my appearance but I am working on it”. It is not simple to rephrase your self talk, it takes practice. But even something as simple as that, I don’t go away feeling like a repulsive human being. I go away knowing I am unhappy with my appearance but I am working on it. It is a world of difference to the way our mind reacts to it.
Not all negative self talk is the same.
- The Worrier (promotes anxiety) – Creating anxiety by imagining the worst case scenario.
- The Critic (promotes low self esteem) – Constantly judging yourself.
- The Victim (promotes despression) – Feeling helpless or hopeless
- The perfectionist (Promotes chronic stress/burnout) – Feeling your efforts are not good enough.
The following are great questions to challenge your negative self statements.
- Where is the evidence?
- What is the worst that could happen?
- Is it probable?
- What is actually true about this situation?
- So what if…….?
- How would this be so terrible
- Am I confusing a thought with a fact?
- Am I being honest?
- Would my argument stand up in a court of law
- How do I know that this is true?
I have been confronted by my group leader once when I said I feel hideous. She asked me where is the proof? Where is the evidence? Do you walk by people and they say “She is hideous? Do they point and comment? They went around the room about what people see about me. The evidence is not there. I am in fact am not hideous. And in fact hideous is a horrible negative self talk judgment upon ones self. What is hideous? When I think about it, I have never met a human being who I would honestly call hideous.
What you allow is what will continue
I have come to remind myself and others of something I truly believe.
What others think of you is one persons opinion, NOT fact!”