Self-belief and that voice in our head.

We want to believe that our thoughts will always support us, but we, for some reason have a little voice in our heads that can be so self-destructive, and negative. The sad part is we often don’t even try to defend ourselves against it, we just accept what it is saying to be true.

The silent internal conversation that we have with ourselves is a natural and normal phenomena. It’s how we process thoughts and feelings and studies show that a healthy self-talk ratio is around 2 positive thoughts to every 1 negative thought. We can discuss, weigh up options, consider and debate all sorts of things in our own head. We can create, design and visualise with the same voice. Our internal conversation can influence our feelings and how we behave. It can influence how we think about others and how we react to situations. Just like our reticular activating system, the internal conversation that we have, we can control. We just accept that what we are saying to ourselves is the truth without checking the facts, looking at things from a different perceptive, or considering other factors. It’s often why we react to things or why we blow things out of proportion.

It can also be the voice of self-doubt. Research is showing that self-talk is developed over years of being influenced by everything around us when we were young. Our parents, friends, teachers, movies, media, books, advertising and so on. As adults, this can affect our self-esteem, our levels of confidence and our beliefs about ourselves and the world around us. The western world has been conditioned to thinking that congratulating ourselves on a job well done is egotistical. This kind of thinking just increases stress.

The worst negative self-talk can automatically pop into our heads just under our conscious level and we often just accept them to be true, they are unhelpful, persistent and tend to be excessively pessimistic. They are unrealistic and unreasonable yet seem totally believable. There is an automatic acceptance of these thoughts, but we don’t have to.

Negative thoughts can be about yourself or about those around you. “I am such and idiot”, “they are such and idiot”, “I can’t believe this is happening to me”, “I am a failure”, “I am a fraud”, “I can never be as good as them”, “I’ll never be able to learn this.” And so on.

Half the battle of overcoming the negative is to identify when they come into your head. If you recognise it, if you become aware of it, you can begin to change it. Research has shown that positive self-talk can help to reduce stress. Look at what you are saying to yourself and if you recognise it as negative self-talk start to write down the things you are saying to yourself and change what you are saying to more positive comments. This is a skill that takes time to learn. Change how you talk to yourself to a more realistic optimistic and accurate way of speaking. Question why you are so hard on yourself and give yourself a break. Challenge the voice, don’t just believe it! And if you are reacting to the people around you, start to wonder what might be causing their behaviour, become more compassionate instead of reactive, more positive, give people the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps they are just having a bad day, or have made a mistake.

Every situation has a positive. Find what the positive is. Look for it, search for it. What is it that you can learn from this situation?

To have self-belief you have to give yourself permission to stop listening to that doubting inner voice. Turn that voice into the voice of the cheerleader, the coach, the one who will spur you on and find the positives.

Examine what is influencing you. Take a look at the people around you, the TV shows that you watch, the blogs that you read. Who you spend time with. Who you are around will be who you are. If you are in Facebook forums with excuse makers then you will make excuses to.
Start to look at who your voice is being influenced by. Does your bestie constantly gossip and put down others. Do you watch reality tv? Are you surrounded by people with no drive, or worse people that tell you that you will not make it? Open your eyes and minds and take a good look at what you have around you, look at how you interact with others. Are you the one who loves to gossip, or criticize others? And if you criticize others, what can it tell you about yourself? What are you sensitive to and why?

All of this will help you find that inner strength, that self-belief that you can do what you want, that you are capable, and that you will succeed.

Self-Belief is critical to success. What’s the point in trying if success is impossible?

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