We’ve all heard that voice in our heads – the one that can often point out mistakes and flaws. Sometimes it can bring us harsh criticism and judgments about our work, appearance, or personality. Our mental discussion is what psychologists call self-talk. Sometimes due to prolonged stress and other hormonal or health issues, this self-talk can become negative. This can affect the way we think about ourselves, our self-confidence, and our well-being. Thankfully, we have identified some ideas which can help you diminish or even stop the negative self-talk.

Even the most successful and happiest people experience a negative conversations with themselves. But these noisy thoughts – which come from our inner voice – are not the problem; it is the weight we give them, the way we choose to interact with them, and the stories we create around them that stand in our way.

What is self-talk?

Understanding how negative self-talk works is the first step in identifying ways to stop it or diminish it.

During the day, we have in our mind a dialogue. This can range from talking about how to accomplish a task to commenting on our internal and external environment and situation.

In recent years, it has become one of the most discussed topics in psychology, researchers have perfected the definition of their own speech. Studies suggest that the way we talk to ourselves has a strong impact on our mental and physical health, including weight control, stress management, and improved athletic and academic performance.

A study published in June 2020 by the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia even linked negative thought patterns to brain changes that could be associated with Alzheimer’s disease. In the study, older adults who engaged in repeated negative thinking were more likely to experience cognitive decline – including memory problems – than those who did not.

Harvard University’s Stress and Development Lab identifies 10 types of negative self-talk we may experience, such as “thinking all or nothing” or “jumping to conclusions.” Identifying when we fall into one of these traps, they say that we can reevaluate whether these interpretations of our situation are useful to live our fullest lives.

Perhaps their most pertinent example for defining what is negative self is what is known as “emotional reasoning,” in which we assume that our negative emotions reflect the way things really are or, “I feel them. , that’s why it has to be true. ”

So let us start by presenting some of our ideas by which you can stop the negative self-talk and live a more happy life.

Stop the negative self-talk by giving yourself kindness and love

Try this visualization technique that encourages us to direct our goodwill first to ourselves and then to others.

But if there isn’t an “off” switch for our ruminating, the question is, “How do we combat negative self-talk?” In the end, we are the only ones who can control this inner voice. Even if sometimes it doesn’t feel that way, you can start by adjusting this inner voice bit by bit. But an effective tool for proving the truth is meditation.

By training the mind, we come to change our perspective and not let our thoughts and feelings define us. With regular practice, meditation teaches us to let go of self-talk and ruminating, and instead to access a place of deep trust that exists beyond the thinking mind.

Read also how to organize your thoughts so that you can have a more peaceful and balanced life.

Stop the negative self-talk tip #2: unlocking our self-esteem

Much of the advice on overcoming our inner critique focuses on how to stop negative self-talk by replacing it with a more positive inner dialogue. But true self-esteem comes from changing our relationship with our thoughts, rather than trying to get over negative thoughts with more positive ones. We are the ones who add the extra layer of meaning, or the labels. Remember that thoughts cannot actually predict our future and we are the only ones who can actually change them and turn them into something powerful.

When we discover how to combat negative self-talk, we should understand that our thoughts and feelings that fuel our inner dialogue are neither good nor bad – happiness is just happiness, sadness is just sadness – but the stories we create around them are the ones who can cause problems.

So, instead of trying to learn how to completely stop talking to ourselves, we should listen, be curious, acknowledge these thoughts without judging, and let them go.

This involves not being too harsh with ourselves and treating our fears and concerns in a way that is similar to giving advice to a friend or loved one — with compassion, kindness, and understanding.

The only way to true mental health is self-pity. Without it, you enter the world from a defensive perspective, protecting yourself from your own inner self-criticism.

Here are also some self-confidence-boosting tips to help you increase your self-esteem level.

Positive thinking helps you manage stress and can even improve your health. Practice it in order to stop the negative self-talk

Is your glass half empty or half full? How you answer this old question about positive thinking can reflect your outlook on life, your attitude toward yourself, and whether you are optimistic or pessimistic – and may even affect your health.

Some studies have shown that personality traits such as optimism and pessimism can affect our health and well-being by affecting our perception of the world around us. Managing our thoughts and learning how to turn them into something positive is a key part of effective stress management. Effective stress management is also associated with many health benefits. Even if you tend to be pessimistic you can learn positive thinking skills, just have patience with yourself. As you have practiced negative self-talk for quite a while, managing it and decreasing it will not happen overnight.

You can learn to turn negative self-talk into positive thinking. The process is simple, but it takes time and practice – you create a new habit, after all. Here are some ways to think and behave in a more positive and optimistic way:

Identify those areas which need to be changed

If you want to be more optimistic and engage in more positive self-talk, first identify areas of your life that you think negatively about, whether it’s work, your daily commute, or a relationship. You can start small by focusing on one area to approach it in a more positive way. Maybe even focus more on what you have learned or have to learn instead of what you have failed to do.

Check your thinking patterns during the day

First create the intention and propose to check during the day what you are thinking. Is it positive or negative self-talk? If you find that your thoughts are mostly negative, try to find a way to turn them into positive ones.

Improving our observation can help you identify better your thinking patterns. Here I have created an article on how it works.

Surround yourself with positive thinking people

Make sure that those in your life are positive and supportive people that you can rely on to provide helpful advice and feedback. Negative people can increase your stress level and make you doubt your ability to manage stress in a healthy way.

Practice positive self-talk as often as possible

Start by following one simple rule: Don’t tell yourself anything else that you wouldn’t tell anyone. Be gentle and encouraging with yourself. If a negative thought comes to mind, evaluate it rationally and respond with statements that are good for you. You can even think about what you are grateful for in your life and focus on that.

Manage stress by practicing mindfulness or different meditation techniques

By practicing mindfulness or meditation, we can train our minds to be calmer, less reactive, and ultimately better equipped to deal with stress in times of crisis. In this way, we can fight the stress and ultimately the negative self-talk.

Mindfulness can help you also train your observation and concentration. As a result of regular practice, you can increase the auto-observation capabilities and identify easier when negative thoughts and self-talk appear.

See also other benefits that a regular meditation practice can have on our emotional health.

Courses that will help you increase your personal development level:

  1. Self-esteem
  2. Personal Development

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