The way you speak to yourself is extremely impactful. It is not uncommon for us to be our own harshest critic. While that is true, we also have the power to lift ourselves up like no one else can.
Be careful who or what you blame. When things aren’t going well, it is easy to blame yourself. I recommend taking a step back to view the situation subjectively. Often the issue is caused by something beyond your control. With this you can replace, “I’m incapable” to “this situation is challenging.” This re-frames it into a problem to be solved rather than a deficiency that cannot easily be remedied.
Be gentle on yourself. When you say or think something about yourself, consider how you might feel if your closest friend said the very same thing to you. If it seems harmful, it probably is. Next time you catch yourself being a little to cruel, try to take a different view and give yourself some encouragement.
Here are some of my most common self-talk phrases.
- “You can do it.” or “It will be okay.”
- “You have done this hundreds of times with a great success rate. It will work out.”
- “That was kind of stupid, try to avoid doing that again.” (Notice this is not as harsh or directed as “You are stupid” and in fact opens the door to growth.)
Few things in life are guaranteed. You will however have to deal with yourself everyday for as long as you are around. Why not build the best relationship you can with yourself? It is commonly suggested “to treat others how you want to be treated”. In this case, I challenge you to treat yourself how you want to be treated.
-Michael J. Flora