Whatever mindset issues have you feeling stuck – like procrastination, limiting beliefs, low self-worth, perfectionism or consistently failing to achieve goals – you’ll learn plenty of practical tips when you sign up to my newsletter. Changing your mindset is the first step to changing your world.
All day long – and all night too – you’re involved in a perpetual conversation with someone.
Mostly it’s a monologue that you’re not consciously paying attention to.
Occasionally you might manage to get a word in edgeways, or deliberately steer the conversation, but not often.
This mega-conversation is taking place with yourself.
Your self talk is the running commentary of your own thoughts, or what I call ‘your inner radio’.
It’s been estimated that you think between 20,000 and 70,000 thoughts a day. It’s almost impossible to stop thinking – serious meditators spend a lifetime trying to still their minds. Try it for 30 seconds. I bet you can’t silence your inner radio completely.
Your self talk mostly arises from your unconscious mind and it’s automatic. You aren’t even aware of your thoughts most of the time.
The content and tone of your self talk vary a lot. Much of it is neutral burble but it can be positive and supportive.
Unfortunately, most of us are also familiar with the carping voice of doom and self doubt; those times when our thoughts are less than supportive and we chuck obstacles in our own way.
In your lifetime you pick up untold millions upon millions of bits of information. You piece together stories based on these bits, and also based on your own random observations and inferences. You assume that these stories are true.
But if you were to put these bits of information together in a different order, or at a different time of day, or when you were in the opposite mood, you’d come up with an entirely different set of thoughts, stories, assumptions and outcomes.
So what feels like truth is actually incredibly random and is based on a wholly subjective view of circumstances, based on incomplete information from a moment that’s frozen in time.
Quite apart from the fact that some of the voices in your head don’t even belong to you…
We’ve all at times heard the ghosts of our parents’ or teachers’ voices in our head, continuing to scold or criticise us for some lapse in behaviour. Well those voices and thoughts are interlopers, lodging in your head without paying rent. YOUR mind is perpetuating them and maintaining the fiction.
Which is a bit of a bummer, because…
Your unconscious mind isn’t rational and doesn’t make judgements. It doesn’t distinguish between right or wrong, good or bad. Is simply accepts what it’s told or shown as the truth, whether the information is factually correct or not.
You then automatically think and feel and behave in a way that is consistent with that truth.
So if you were told as a child that you were lazy, it’s quite likely that you’ll drag that criticism around with you and limit yourself as an adult. You may think: “I’ve always been lazy. That’s just the way I am. I can’t change now.”
Supportive self talk encourages you and helps you to think, feel and behave in a flexible, healthy and goal-supporting way.
Unsupportive self talk leaves you feeling unsure about your abilities; not quite good enough. It has a negative impact on your mindset, emotions, performance, will power, health, self worth and resilience.
Make no mistake, negative, self-critical and unhelpful thoughts WILL hold you back.
The voice that:
Wouldn’t that be one hell of a skill to have – being able to change the channel?
Just imagine if the voice in your head was mostly supportive, self accepting and compassionate…
What couldn’t you achieve?
Well guess what…
You CAN learn to change and control your self talk.
It is completely possible to retune your inner radio to be a more helpful and supportive station – at least most of the time (you’re only human after all).
The wonderful thing about mindset is that it changes all the time. New information in = new outcome. You can decide to change your mind about anything – even yourself – any time you want to.
So what messages is your radio broadcasting? How are your thoughts helping or hindering you?
Over the next three posts I’m going to share my 3-point plan to change your self talk. It’s a very simple process but I’m not going to pretend it’s easy. Your inner radio has been broadcasting the same messages for decades and it’s not going to let you retune to a healthier new station without a fight.
Make sure you keep reading this series and do the tasks I set at the end of each post. I promise you, that small investment in time and energy will be well worth it.
I’ll see you soon.
Please feel free to comment or share if you’ve found this helpful or if you have any questions.
Caroline is a Mindset Trainer and speaker who works with sensitive, high-potential leaders who know they were born for something more. She shows them how to beat mindset blocks and habits, such as limiting beliefs, low self worth and procrastination, that are preventing them from making a bigger impact.
Please log in again. The login page will open in a new tab. After logging in you can close it and return to this page.