Self-talk may not be our favorite thing to do… BUT, there are crazy perks that outweigh the craziness of talking to ourselves! Tell you more? Okay.
Gabriele Oettingen, Ph.D., a NYU psychologist who spect 20 years studying self-talk science says that when done correctly, self-talk can impact the sympathetic nervous system to temporarily lift blood pressure, a sign of increased energy and motivation. She notes that just thinking positive thoughts isn’t enough. When chanting a mantra or ‘hoo-rah’ for ourselves, we are creating an upbeat script to cue us when we need to get through an obstacle or not give up. Thus, the well-studied technique helps us identify dreams early on and gives internal encouragement to tackle at full force, no matter the giants that stand in our way! I like the sound of that! But where to get started you may ask?
First, let’s get used to giving ourselves compliments and positive affirmations. We’ve got to stop shaming ourselves when we fall short of goals and off our paths. ‘Words of affirmation’ is one of the KEY love languages that people desire from others so why not from ourselves? When you cut yourself down or shame yourself, you are giving others permission to treat you the way you feel inside. If you start to accept self love and cheer yourself on, you’ll better accept the love you receive from others and be able to reciprocate it.
Secondly, we’ve got to stop aiming for perfection and start aiming for little steps of success. Think of something you’d like to do or see happen in your work place, your health or even your relationships, and then strengthen your commitment to this goal by mentally and physically repeating it to yourself on a daily basis. This action will be a constant reminder of what you want to achieve and will hold you accountable of that goal or dream.
Third, admit that there will be hurdles. Admitting and articulating roadblocks that stand in our way will help to keep us from giving up once they arrive or get in the way. If we admit now that there will be times we will feel defeated, let down or ready to quit, it will help us to not feel as discouraged when we hit that point later on. It may also help to keep the end result in mind. Remember why you started, who your motivation is (your kids, God, your husband or self) and then back to self-talk to get your wheels straight.
Lastly, make a plan. Kind of like writing down your goals vs just having them as thoughts. Action takes planning. Make a vision board, start a Pinterest account if you haven’t already, talk to your loved ones about what you want to accomplish and map your attack. Visualize yourself carrying out your plan and let the emotions you feel inside while you see yourself at the finish line guide you. Believe in yourself and the rest will follow.
The power of self-talk impacts our strength, confidence, happiness, even our abilities to shed pounds or go for that promotion. What’s stopping you from a little bit more love in your life?