Sunday, June 23, 2019

Day 64 - Self-talk

This week, on my facebook page, I have been exploring the concept of self-love. 
One of the four key aspects of my Damselfly Coaching Model.
Self-love isn't a luxury and it is far from self-indulgent.
It is 100% essential if we are to move forward, face challenges and live our very best life.
But, how do we love ourselves? What does that even mean?
Well, first of all, it's important to remember that love is a verb, not a noun. 
It's an action, not a feeling. 
So, self-love is first and for most about how we behave towards ourselves.

How do you talk to yourself?
What kind of words do you use to describe yourself?
Are you kind and gentle or mean and judgmental?
When was the last time you thought about your self-talk?
Are you more cautious of the tone and words you use towards others than towards yourself?

Self-talk can be an act of self-love or an act of self-betrayal. 

According to research we have anywhere between 50 000 and 80 000 thoughts a day and 80% of those thoughts are negative.  Have you ever taken the time to notice how many of those negative thoughts are related to what you think and feel about yourself? Now trying to notice every single thought we have is obviously impossible and I am certainly not suggesting you try.  But I am inviting you to become a little bit more aware of which of your thoughts support self-love and which don't.
How does that relate to self-talk? Self-talk includes anything and everything we say to ourselves throughout the day.  Sometimes we might say these things out loud but more often then not, they  come up as a thoughts.  Often, we are not even aware that these thoughts are present even though they may be impacting both our mood and behaviour.
So how can we become more aware of our self-talk and get a sense of what messages we our giving ourselves on a daily basis.
For example, what do you say to yourself when you look in the mirror every morning?
"I am looking fine today!" or "Crap, look at those ugly bags under my eyes!"
Can you guess which of these is loving and which is not?  Now, for those of you who are saying, I don't think anything when I look in the mirror, well, dig a little deeper my friend.  Chances are you are thinking something.  If you are thinking about the weather fine, no worries, but make sure there are no lingering negative thoughts going on deep down in your unconscious.  These thoughts play on your self-esteem and your ability to be the empowered woman you are meant to be. So make sure they are not sneaking in there without your permission.
Here are some strategies to support you in developing your self-awareness around your self-talk:

  • Journal about a particular event that might have brought up strong feelings and emotions during the day.
  • Notice strong emotions and feelings that come up and try uncovering what thoughts preceded these emotions. 
  • Slow down and be present.  
  • Meditate.
  • Spend time in a relaxed environment on a regular basis.
  • Get curious about what thoughts are coming up when you are:
    • doing the dishes
    • driving
    • taking a shower
    • sweeping the floor
    • taking a walk
  • Basically, use any opportunity you have to examine and get curious about your self-talk.  The more you practice doing this, the better you will get at it.  
When you start noticing that your self-talk is not so positive and empowering, you can change it. 
Talk to yourself as you would someone whom you truly love and care about.  Someone you want to support and encourage, like your child or your best friend.  
At the end of the day, loving yourself is your responsibility my friend.
Create an awesome day!