If I was asked to name the single most important technique I have used to develop my Mental Resilience it would have to be developing a positive inner voice. This is a life changer for many people once they learn the techniques involved.
Positive self-talk usually consists of words or brief phrases that inspire, motivate, or remind us to focus and keep moving. Phrases like, ‘keep your head down,’ ‘let’s go,’ and, ‘breathe,’ help us focus our attention and trigger the hopefully ideal response and action for the task at hand.
Some of my positive inner voice phrases when I feel overwhelmed are, ‘just do one thing at a time.’ ‘you can do it,’ ‘I’m good at this,’ ‘I can, I will, I want to,’ and, ‘bring it on!’
Reminding myself to pause and inhale before I deal with a difficult situation often keeps me focused on the task.
“If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.” Vincent Van Gogh
We all have an inner voice
We have an inner voice that speaks to us consciously and unconsciously all the time.
- Our self-esteem and self-image are developed by how we talk to ourselves.
- The critical inner voice is the part of us that is turned against ourselves.
- It is opposed to our on-going development and is a hostile, judgemental advisor.
- It is often experienced as a running commentary that attacks and criticises our actions and interactions in everyday life.
- We need to develop a positive inner voice, which creates positive results.
- Positive self-talk consists of words or brief phrases that inspire, motivate, or remind us to focus and keep moving.
- You have to listen to your heart and do what is best for you in your life.
- Notice what you’re already saying to yourself
Most of us don’t give conscious attention to the voices rambling in our heads. Consciously tune into your self-talk; you can’t change it if you are not aware of it. Identify an area of your life where you are especially critical of yourself and then pay attention to what the criticisms are.
- Focus on something else
Whenever you hear that voice, think of something positive in your life. Think about a loved one or a funny joke, anything to get you back in a positive mindset. Go for a walk – sometimes just doing something physical gives us enough endorphins to actually feel better about ourselves.
- Pick your power phrase
Pick three of four phrases that feel good. You may even feel a rush of energy when you say them and practise them out loud. Choose words that inspire you, motivate you, make you laugh or boost your mood – for example, ‘you are good at this,’ or, ‘you’re the Man!’
- Embrace your imperfections
It’s enormously freeing to stop holding yourself to ridiculously high standards. Perfectionism is destructive. Interviews with successful CEOs and award-winning athletes found that they credit their success to a willingness to make mistakes and move on, rather than consistently trying to be perfect.
Usually somewhere along the way we came across someone who told us that we’re not good at doing something, and we believe them. It could be anything: writing, singing, dancing or speaking.
The tragedy comes from not following our dreams because we always hear that one negative voice telling us that we’re no good. No matter how many other people tell us the opposite, we always remember that one negative voice.
Life is too short to not do the things we love because some misguided person told us not to do it. If you love singing, then sing. How about writing? If you love it, do it. That’s the only reason – it brings you joy, so do it. You have to listen to your heart and do what is best for you.
Remember when you finally do succeed that most negative person who said you could never do it will probably be the loudest person to say, ‘I knew they could do it.’ It’s human nature.
It’s your life, not someone else’s. So, LIVE IT!
Thoughts for the week
- This week really listen to your inner voice.
- What are you saying to yourself?
- Is your inner voice more positive or negative?
- When you find yourself speaking negatively stop this by focusing on positive things in your life.
- Your mission this week is to increase your positive thoughts and decrease your negative thoughts.
That’s it for this week have a wonderful weekend and believe the best is yet to come.