I have a guess about you. I guess that when someone comes to you for help or encouragement, you are kind. Good guess huh? I’m guessing you would not ever say anything like this:
“I can’t believe you are still stuck on this. We talked about this same thing 3 months ago, seriously!”
“You need to stop feeling sorry for yourself. Just get back to work!”
‘‘You are such a drama queen!”
“I’d just give up if I were you. You are stupid and shouldn’t even try!”
“Who do you think you are to try to do that?!”
Can you imagine if you ever spoke to a friend or loved one like that? What would happen? Hopefully anyone who hears talk like that runs for the hills!
But that is EXACTLY how we talk to ourselves. And many times much crueler. Now imagine the friend that we spoke to that way to doesn’t leave. They just listen to the abuse year after year. How emotionally healthy would they be?
How we speak to ourselves is SO important.
Now science is catching up with all this and measuring the results of kind self talk vs mean self talk. Turns out being kind to yourself is profoundly good for you! How you talk to yourself affects your emotional health, stress levels, and ability to handle hard situations. It even affects physical health related to stress.
Kind self talk creates “happy hormones” as I call them. These include oxytocin (which helps with social bonding), serotonin (feelings of well being and happiness), and dopamine ( helps drive motivation).
Unkind self-talk creates “poison hormones” as I’ll call them. They literally behave the same way poison does in our bodies. These include coritsol (high cortisol causes many physical problems such as hypertension, diabetes, and reduced libido to name a few) and adrenaline ( adrenaline is great when running from a bear, but is meant to be short term, long term it is super stressful to the body. When it’s overworked, it causes exhaustion).
Want more happy hormones, but don’t want to bury your head in the sand and think about happy happy bull crap? GOOD! That’s not what you need to do. Here are 3 realistic ways to do this:
Just stop and think about what you are telling yourself every day in your mind. Even just reading this will make you more aware of how you are talking to your self. This is a really big deal. Every time you notice that you just beat yourself up, that’s great! Celebrate each time you notice.
Take 5-10 mins a day to STOP. Just sit. If you pray or meditate, do it. If you can set your phone on white noise and just count your breaths, that’s amazing. If this sounds like torture to you- then you may need it most … I avoided this for so long and it truly is life changing. Now science can measure the effects of this - and it decreases stress, depression, anxiety. Tons of good stuff. Try it for 7 days. Experiment on yourself. There are tons of free videos on You Tube to help too.
Lastly, take 5-10 mins to think about and write down what you actually want to hear. Think of how you encourage your friends. Start to tell yourself the same things. Write 5 kind things to say to yourself. Not “I’m a rock star” —your mind will very quickly call bs on that. And I doubt you say things like that to your friends in real life. More likely you say things like. ‘‘You are doing such a good job” Or, “You made it through that hard thing, you can make it through this too.” “You are smart. You can figure this out. You can do this” Simple is great.
Now you have a couple tools to take loads of stress out of your life. Yay! This may seem ridiculously simple. It is. But it works. And it beats the alternative!
If you are feeling stuck in this area and want to meet with me to work on your issue together, go to www.cyrinatalbott.com and see if you could benefit from a Rapid Transformational Therapy.