We all talk to ourselves. I’m not referring to when we talk to ourself out loud and get funny looks from others. I’m referring to the internal dialog that we have with ourself. The words we use have power over how we perceive ourself and our talents, our abilities, our knowledge, our worth. The words we use affect our self-confidence, our self-esteem.
I have read many times, and I’m sure you have as well, about the importance of giving ourselves positive messages. “I am smart.” “I am strong.” I am ____.” This is obviously something that will help us.
Sometimes, though, I think we need to individualize messages rather than just using generic ones. When we do this, we can empower ourselves even more, at least for specific situations.
For example, some people love adventure. If they tell themselves that something will be an adventure, it makes them excited and motivated. For them, this would be a positive message, an empowering message.
Not for me. The very word “adventure” causes anxiety. (I always thought that a certain rental company that used the phrase “adventure in moving” was way off base.)
What I love is learning. If I tell myself that something will be a “learning experience” then I can get excited about it. Learning is a positive message for me. Having a chance to learn something new is empowering for me.
If there is a situation (travel for example) and I look at it as an adventure, I become apprehensive. I think of all the things that could go wrong. If I tell myself that it will be a learning experience, then I’m good. Even if something goes wrong, I can still learn from it. And maybe I can keep it from happening in the future.
When you are in situations that cause you anxiety or stress, or situations that you do not think you can do, or do not want to do, can you rephrase the message you are giving yourself? Can you change the words so that the message becomes positive for you, empowers you?