Is there a benefit to engaging in negative self-talk or negative self-judgement? I have said many times that if anyone were to talk to us the way we talk to ourselves, we’d most likely beat them up and then never speak to them again. This same thing applies with some of our negative self-judgements, as we often call ourselves stupid, incompetent, and sometimes much, much worse.
A teacher of mine explained to me that it’s a natural human inclination to seek out the danger that surrounds us, since in our original roles as hunters and gatherers, if our eyes weren’t wide open, we would be killed by wild animals.
Regardless of it being natural for us to engage in this behavior, it is extremely harmful, hurtful, and counterproductive for us to do so. I have never seen anyone truly change their lives because they spoke negatively to themselves; in fact, the negative self-talk often leads us down a darker path towards worse behavior, since we will do whatever it takes to get rid of the negative feelings, which in turn creates this horrible, vicious cycle of negativity.
Back to my original question though: negative self-talk is no bueno, and neither is negative self-judgement, yet I find using judgement as an observer in our lives– asking ourselves if our behavior is beneficial or not, and using judgement as a compass to improve and to gently nudge ourselves in the correct direction is absolutely helpful.
Now, how do you get rid of negative self-talk and negative self-judgement? This is the bigger question. I have not done the best job of it, yet what I do attempt to do the best I can is remind myself that I don’t need these thoughts and they aren’t serving me. I literally have a conversation with myself and say to my thoughts, “thank you for showing up. I’m not buying what you are selling, and if you want to help me get better, thinner, happier, etc., let’s find an easier and softer way of getting me back on track”.
How do you combat and redirect your negative self-talk? And do you find that there is any benefit to engaging in negative self-talk and self-judgement?
This week, let’s remind ourselves that we all have a little child within us, that we deserve and need to be gentle and more kind to ourselves, and that shame isn’t going to get us anywhere positive.
Accountability, Community, Unconditional Love
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