Self talk. Good, bad ugly? Enough!
Self talk! We all have indulged into it. We have used it to spin ideas, clear confusions make decisions in our life. It is an important mind tool that is embedded in all of us humans. In fact, it is one of our most automated, versatile and favourite mind capability we have; and we use it to the maximum. It is an important part of our ongoing thinking and evaluation process where we self-evaluate our options, self-validate (or invalidate) options and even offer advice to self.
It is a self-generated input we feed to our mind, in order to influence our direction or the next steps in our life. You can think of it like an internal feedback mechanism that provides information to the mind, in an evaluative way, in addition to our five senses. In fact, there are times when we trust our self-talk more than any sensory evidence.
Sometimes, we go overboard!
Sometimes, the direction of the self talk becomes too cyclic. The same though keeps getting into repeated spin generating a cloud of self-feedback views, to an extend that any other sensory input, such as visual & auditory start becoming irrelevant to the mind. The self-talk becomes a strong filter to the information we are receiving from external sources, and we start believing only those thoughts that suit this cyclic thought pattern. This is where we get the feeling of being stuck. This is where, instead of being a tool of our mind, the self talk start ruling our minds, and our life. This excessive cyclic self-talk may be useful in some scenarios and extremely harmful in others. It may spin in a direction that is self-destroying instead of self-building.
Self-talk, being an important element of our thinking and evaluation process, must not be stopped. Interventions can be made to slow it down and relax this, but eventually what works towards self-development is changing the direction of self-talk.
How do change the direction and the intensity of self talk?
There are many ways that the direction of self-talk can be changed. You can either do it yourself, or if you can take help of a life coach to assist you with it. Here we will discuss a proven method that you can use on your own, if you want to regulate the direction and intensity of your own self talk. Please note that this methods are for you, and your own mind will select what works with you.
Step 1: Awareness
The first step involves being aware that the fact that your mind is getting in a cyclic self talk that is troubling you. Your own mind will make you aware, If you often find yourself getting into this cyclic zone of self talk, and this is troubling you. There is an automated warning / alert mechanism built-in all of us that indicates that we are over-thinking. Learn to recognise this warning from the mind. This is the point where you must take an action to change the direction of the self talk, or reduce the intensity and speed of your self talk. If you keep ignoring this mind-warning for long, your mind will start believing that you are comfortable with this self talk, and stop producing warnings at the current threshold. This can be dangerous for your mental stability and health. So, please respect the warning signals that your own mind produces. Other symptoms of excessive self talk is being lost in thoughts for longer periods of time, without being fully aware of what is going on around you. If your find this happening to you, take notice. It is time for changing the direction and intensity of your own self talk.
Step 2: Break State
The second step involves intervening with a break-state mechanism. At this time, we already know that our thinking pattern & state of mind is already compromised. So instead of using our mind, we use our bodies to change the state of mind. It can be a small action like giving a slight jerk to the head area, or just standing and jumping on your feet for a few minutes. This can involve getting up from where you have been sitting for long and allowing some physical movement. Mind and body are parts of the same system and they influence each other. Use the body to create a break in the cyclic self-talk patterns that your want to break. This will create an automatic temporary pause in the thoughts, good enough to move to the third step of building new resources for new thinking patterns.
Step 3: Finding & building Resources
The third step is about finding and building resources that help the mind to move in a useful, peaceful and progressive direction. It is quite important to notice here that self talk in internal and now at this state we require external intervention. Some people take help of self-help books, motivational videos and attending seminars. The idea of to be open to listening to people who have already broken this pattern and are teaching it with an open mindset. Explore options. Go out and meet new people. At any point of time, if you find conversions pulling you back to the old cyclic self-talk, quit the conversation. Your own mind’s stability is far more important than anything else, at this stage. Avoid getting into negative conversations at this time. Just build new experiences. Open up the mind to new possibilities.
You can do it yourself, or consult a life coach for the same. A professional life coach can take you through responsible conversations and proven methods, step by step, in a series of sessions. Build your resources that help you explore new ways of thinking.
Step 4: Develop alternative resources
The fourth step involves producing & developing alternative directions of thinking. By now, you already have moved to a point where the cyclic self talk has reduced in intensity in phases. There may still be some bouts of old patterns, but by now, you can effectively use step two (break state) and step three (building resources), to get in a better zone. This is the time when we start producing and selecting the more efficient yet relaxed ways of thinking, with a balanced mix of old and new resources. At this stage, we start taking a new direction of thought, that is based on our experiences in the third step. A new way to thinking and life opens up here, with great possibilities. This is where a major shift happens in your own mind.
Step 5: Deep-embed and hard-wiring
The fifth step involves rehearsing new ways of thinking. Now that you have found a new direction, it is time to deep-embed and hardwire it in your system. There are multiple ways to do this deep embedding and hard-wiring. A popular way is to use this new way of thinking to apply to all (or most) situations in your life. Be fearless and apply your new chosen way to thinking to your life, each day. The other way is to use NLP, with the help of a coach, to deep embed this new pattern of thinking . Both of these methods work, and you can choose how you would like to bring this change in you. In case you choose to opt for life coaching, the process may have faster results. Rehearse this new thinking patterns and be the new you. Being free from cyclic over-thinking is one of the biggest freedoms to achieve and enjoy.
Welcome your new thinking ways to your own self.
If you are looking for professional help to stop over-thinking and change your self talk, you can meet me by setting an appointment. Click here to send a request.