Something I am completely obsessed with is self-talk. I talk about it all the time everywhere I go. Why? Because it has such an incredible ability to completely turn your life around in ways that you wouldn’t even expect! Getting my self-talk right was the first thing I did that I committed to when it came to personal growth and healing. And it’s the thing that completely changed my life once I let it.
Here I’m going to share with you my top 3 tips on getting your self-talk right so you can go after the life you deserve. Let’s get started!
Rewire your brain
The first thing that I learned about self-talk, the thing that got me completely fascinated by the topic, was that you can literally rewire your brain based on how you speak to yourself. Yes, you read that right. Rewire your brain. How freaking cool is that?!
Throughout our lives, our brain creates connections based on what it’s told and what it experiences. If you told yourself, or had it told to you, that you were smart consistently, that became a connection in your brain that it uses throughout your life. The sad part is that if you told yourself that you were stupid, or had it told to you, that became a connection in your brain.
The best part, however, is that you can create new connections to replace the old ones! How do you do this?
The very first thing I suggest, and the first thing I have my clients do, is to start saying daily affirmations. These are words or phrases that you say consistently. Whether you believe them or not doesn’t matter. This is training the brain to understand and process what it’s being told. The affirmations I start with are:
I am strong.
I am capable.
I am intelligent.
I am worthy.
Again, whether you believe it or not doesn’t matter. What matters is that you discipline yourself to say these consistently every single day. Eventually what will happen is that your brain will start to believe it, so you find yourself believing it. It takes time, but if you commit to the work it is worth it.
For more information on why this works, listen to episode 3 of the Confidence from the Ground Up Podcast.
Cancel out negative thoughts
How often do you put yourself down in a day? How often do you say “man I’m so stupid.” or “I’m such an idiot.” or “I’m not good enough.”?
Honestly, the answer is probably a lot more than you think. So often we make negative self talk such a habit that we don’t even realize that we’re doing it. These become the chains that hold us back from goals, dreams, and opportunities. The more often we put ourselves down, the more we solidify those connections in our brain.
So how do you combat that?
Grab a notebook and pen and keep it with you for a day or two. Every time you find yourself putting yourself down, write the specific phrase down. As you go through the day, you may find yourself saying the same thing over and over. Put a mark by those things so you know how often you say it.
Here’s an example: if you find yourself saying “I’m so stupid” multiple times, you’ll write down “I’m so stupid” in the notebook and then put a | by it. So your notebook would look like this:
I’m so stupid |||
Or however many times you’ve said it.
The next day, look at the ones that have the most marks by them. If “I’m so stupid” is the one that comes up the most, then that’s going to be the first thing you tackle. Disclaimer: you’re going to want to work on all of them. Don’t do it. At the max, pick two phrases. That’s it.
Then you’re going to create an affirmation that negates it. For “I’m so stupid,” your affirmation could be “I’m very intelligent.” Again, it doesn’t matter if you don’t believe it. What matters is that you’re being consistent with the work.
After you’ve created your affirmations, say them out loud to yourself in the mirror in the morning and at night.
This is going to begin to rewire your brain so you can begin to believe them.
I cover this a little deeper in this podcast episode if you want to give it a listen.
Accept compliments from others
When someone offers you a compliment, how do you take it? Do you take it at all? Do you brush it off? Or do you accept it like you would a gift? This is extremely important as we work on our brains. When you reject a compliment, not only is it disrespectful, but it’s telling your brain that you don’t deserve to be complimented and whatever the compliment was isn’t true.
This leads to you not being able to trust others because your brain doesn’t believe what they day. It also leads to you not being able to trust yourself. Because if people continually tell you you’re smart, but you say that you’re stupid, your brain becomes conflicted and plants seeds of distrust.
If you struggle with this, you’re not alone. The first thing you need to do is accept them. It doesn’t matter if you believe them, just accept them. I’m still working on this, so I know it isn’t easy. But being able to say “Thank you!” instead of rejecting it is a massive milestone. Not only will it feel better for the person giving the compliment, but it will also begin to warm up your brain to eventually believe them.
This podcast episode dives deeper into this if you’re wanting to really make this work!
Wrapping it Up
Self-talk is such an underutilized and underestimated strategy to wire your brain for confidence and success. It’s also incredibly important to get it straight if you want to go after your goals. By adding affirmations, battling the negative self-talk, and accepting compliments, you are well on your way to rewiring your brain.
You are absolutely wonderful and deserve to see that. It’s time to recognize how amazing you are and stop putting yourself down.
I promise that if you commit to this work, you’re going to be amazed at the progress you make. It will take time. But if you’re consistent, it will happen a lot sooner than you think.
I know I referenced a few episodes of the podcast but in case you missed the links, I’ll put them here for you!
Self Talk 101