I talk to myself an awful lot. And I’m not kidding, I mean a lot. In fact, maybe I should be embarrassed for how many conversations I have with myself on a daily basis? I know I certainly feel that way when I talk to myself in public without realising, and meet the eyes of some unnerved stranger who totally saw the whole thing.
But then again, how am I supposed to know myself and eventually grow to love myself if I don’t have a chat with me? Talking to yourself can be an amazing release sometimes and can be a great way to psych yourself up when necessary. Unfortunately, more times than not the self-talk I give out is negative and I know I’m not alone in this.
The idea of telling yourself stories is something I first heard in this Shope Delano video (fabulous creator, must see) and was later explained in more detail in this Curly and Wordy post (yet another marvellous creator, definite must see). And even though it was laid out for me by these amazing women, and on the odd occasion elsewhere, it still took far too long for me to actually figure out what it actually meant.
Like I said, I talk to myself an awful lot. But I hadn’t realised that often it is the things I leave unsaid that cause the most issues. It’s those little beliefs of myself that I’ve created, and then clung to ever since, that cause trouble. I want to outline the stories I tell myself and how they interrupt my life, as well as seeing what ways I can change the self-talk I give myself to lead to an ultimately happier, more content me. Because self-care is important!
THE STORIES I TELL
“I’m an introvert, and therefore should avoid all social activities”
Learning that I am an introvert was very important for me and definitely helped me throughout my time at university. However there is a point when something stops being helpful and instead just becomes a hindrance, and my introvertism has become just that.
Although I can now accept that I actually need time alone to recharge, I find myself saying no way too often. In fact I say no so often, that there actually isn’t any need for me to take time out to recharge, as I haven’t done anything that could impact me anyway!
“I can’t trust people and, therefore, cannot have truly deep connections”
Although I do often struggle to trust people initially and like to take my time building connections before getting too comfortable, this isn’t even an issue. But for some reason I turn it into something I struggle with in my head.
I don’t have trust issues, I have just grown to be more selective about who I share my life with because I am at that stage in life where this is a possibility. By constantly telling myself that I struggle to trust others, I’m getting in my own way of making real connections with those already in my life. I become to fixated on what could be instead of living in the now.
“My mental health is not as important as I do not have it as bad as this person”
This is something I hate hearing other people say, yet say it to myself on a regular basis. I believe that everyone’s mental health should be something they consider a great importance, as it literally effects everything. It’s your health for God’s sake!
I understand that no one can truly understand what another person is going through, and the issues you have to deal with on your own (whether you have a condition of sorts or are simply having a bad day) are the most important ones to you, I somehow still can’t give myself a break.
I am definitely too hard on myself and don’t really give myself a break, which almost sounds like I’m bragging but trust me I’m not. I am slowly getting to grips with the fact I need to take care of my mental health too, regardless of what else is happening.
Comparison is another unhealthy habit I have too and it’s something I really want to work on. I compare myself to basically every person I meet or encounter and with the rise in social media and my total obsession with it, I am comparing myself countless times a day.
When I say comparing, by the way, let me be clear that I am comparing myself in a negative way. Whenever I compare myself to someone, whether that be our looks, our successes or even our personalities, I always come out on bottom. And I think that’s how it goes for most of us, which is tragic and ultimately pointless.
I know that there is only one of me and that everything I am is so unique. Through this I understand that there is no point in comparing myself to others, as I will never match up. Yet I still do it.
But, the first step in solving a problem is admitting that it’s there in the first place so here I am admitting it.
In order to improve the way I talk to myself, and ultimately live my life, I first needed to be aware of the issues. Now I’ve clearly done that, I need to constantly keep checking in on myself in order to kick these bad habits.
Whenever I find myself giving negative self-talk I need to stop, check myself and remind myself of the impacts this has. I may have to implement some positive mantras that I can repeat when I catch myself talking bad and will definitely be looking for solutions (although not comparison!).
It’s going to be a long journey, and something I feel like I will always be working on, but I know that in order to feel better and live to my fullest potential, I need to commit.
After all, the only way I can make a difference to the world is if I start with myself. And I need to be kinder to myself and show myself that I am worth it, hence making this commitment to start treating myself a bit better.
What commitment are you going to make to yourself? And do you have any positive mantras you would like to share?
Thank you so much for reading this. I love self-reflection, self-discovery pieces and hope to produce more. Feel free to share any materials you have on this!
How I’m Going to Make Myself Proud in 2017: Curly And Wordy
Insights Into 2016 (part one): Shope Delano
I Don’t Think That Affirmations Are Bullshit Anymore: Curly and Wordy
Stories of Triumph and Calling BS on Yourself: Shope Delano
How to Train Yourself To Be More Positive: Muchelle B
Self Love: Munashe