Never underestimate the power of Self Talk!
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Mim Tait, Therapeutic Counsellor
22nd February, 20110 Comments
How much does self talk sabotage our lives?
We learn as we grow up many, many things we should not do. Think about how many ‘should nots’, ‘ ought nots’, ‘must nots’, ‘ cannots’ you have heard, and now tell yourself.
How many times did you hear, and you tell yourself, what you ‘can do’? We tend to be told by the adults in our lives as we grow up, what we can and cannot do, what we are good at and what we are not, how we look, what to expect, what to believe in, how to behave, what to do and what not to do – we learn to accept what others tell us and we believe it – part of this is for our own safety as we grow up, but is it all actually true?
Over the years, these scripts have become our own. And the more you think and speak like this, the more you believe it. Our brain believes what we tell it! Over time, this self talk can become the barrier to what we could become. As we give ourselves these negative messages, so the brain creates this as our reality – it can’t do anything else, unless we change our self talk to positive messages.
We have an extraordinary number of thoughts each day. These are filtered and processed by us according to such things as:
- What we hear
- Our own programming
- Our current mood
- Our environment
- Our life experiences
Each thought is translated into electrical impulses which, in turn, direct the control centres in our brains to electrically and chemically affect and control every motion, feeling, action we take. Our programming creates our belief system and thus our attitudes. Attitudes affect how we feel about things. How we feel about things will influence how we behave.
What we believe will determine our attitudes, will create our feelings and influence our behaviour. Belief does not mean that something has to be true, we only have to believe it is true. It becomes are reality. Therefore to change our negative self talk with positive self talk, carried out persistently, will, over time, change how we feel about ourselves. At the same time, understanding where our self talk originates from and the feelings it evokes in us, allows us to challenge our belief system and thus our pattern of self talk.
Negative self talk can have such a profound effect upon both our emotional and physical health. Listen to your own script – which we repeat consciously and unconsciously – how much do you think this is affecting your life?
Related articles from our experts
Dr Kornilia Givissi, Counselling Psychologist (HCPC Reg, DCounsPsy)March 16th, 2017
Matt Fox - Psychosynthesis Counsellor MBACPMarch 5th, 2017
Greg Savva, Counselling in Twickenham & Whitton, Masters Degree, UKCP,March 9th, 2017
Andrea Harrn Psychotherapist and Author of The Mood CardsMay 13th, 2011
Imi Lo: Psychotherapist, Art Therapist, Supervisor (MMH,UKCP,HCPC,MBPsS)March 29th, 2015
Keeley Townsend BA (Hons), Ad.Dip.CP with Distinction, MNCS (Acc)December 14th, 2009
Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.