Stop Negative Self-Talk And Use Positive Affirmations

Have you ever wanted to just shut that inner voice up for good? The one that beats you up and tells you horrible lies… about yourself? Everyone has an inner voice, but sometimes that nasty voice gets the best of us and creates a breeding ground for negative self-talk and destructive behaviors.

Have you ever wanted to just shut that inner voice up for good? The one that beats you up and tells you horrible lies… about yourself? Everyone has an inner voice, but sometimes that nasty voice gets the best of us and creates a breeding ground for negative self-talk and destructive behaviors.

Negative self-talk isn’t all bad. Sometimes we need the “voice of reason” to reel us back in when we might be on the verge of making a bad decision. For instance, if you’re about to attempt something that compromises the safety of yourself or others, you might need that inner critic to jump up and remind you the risk outweighs the reward.

On the other hand, negative self-talk oftentimes comes in the form of inaudible dialogue with yourself that makes you question even the smallest decisions, things you know you are quite capable of handling. It brings on self-doubt, crushes confidence and pretty much paralyzes the ability to make positive changes.

Using positive affirmations is the best defense against negative self-talk. And yes, while some people find it useful to place sticky notes with encouraging phrases and quotes all over the house and workspace, that doesn’t work for all of us.

Even though the notes are carefully posted in places we are sure to see them, they eventually get ignored because we don’t even believe them in the first place.
Thankfully there are strategies that actually work to stop the negative self-talk and replace it with positive affirmations!

You don’t have to “convince” yourself or repeat some mantra to get the job done. It takes a little critical thinking, but you can absolutely retrain your brain with a more objective game plan.

Here’s how to get started:

What’s Your Trigger?

You have to identify the times your inner negative dialogue begins. It might be when you are facing new challenges at work or getting ready for a blind date. Before you can stop it, you have to know when it starts.

Allow for a Gray Area

Not everything is black and white. Don’t limit yourself to thinking things are either good or bad, wonderful or horrible, beautiful or ugly. There is a middle ground, a place where there is neutrality and calmness.

Think of the last decision you made: Did the result come out exactly perfect or absolutely awful? There’s probably a grey area in there and you haven’t given it a second thought. If the results weren’t positive, they must be negative, right?

Wrong! It doesn’t have to be one or the other. Identify the grey area and it takes some of the stress out of the decision.

Worst-Case Scenario

When we talk negatively to ourselves, we are basically talking ourselves out of whatever we have planned, or want to plan. During times like this we need to go ahead and play out the worst possible scenario in our heads. The worst-case scenario rarely happens but ask yourself how you will handle the situation anyway.

Reframe & Replace

The easiest way to break a bad habit is to replace it with something good. For instance, a smoker might replace cigarettes with suckers. Now that you know your trigger, have realized there is a grey area, worked through the worst-case scenario, it’s time to reframe and replace.

Replace the negative thought with something positive: “I’ll never be good enough” could be reframed by using something you are good at as a focal point for a positive affirmation like, “I’m a very good listener” or “I’m pretty good at organizing things.”

Using Positive Affirmations

Positive affirmations don’t have to be limited to quotes thoughtfully posted all over your home, as stated above. There are lots of ways to work in positive affirmations without lifting a finger.

You just have to train your mind to identify where to apply them. When you get more comfortable noticing the triggers to negative self-talk, arming yourself with positive affirmations becomes second nature.

Here are a few easy ways to incorporate using positive affirmations:

¢ Embrace your flaws and imperfections – everybody has them!
¢ Face your fears – take baby steps and conquer fears that hold you back!
¢ Meditation – being mindful and intention in thought is incredibly powerful!
¢ Do what makes you happy – if you’re happy doing it, you’re probably good at it! Use this as fuel!
¢ Be good to you – take time for self-care! It’s hard to be negative when you feel good inside and out!
¢ Be grateful – negative self-talk doesn’t have a place in a grateful mind.
¢ Surround yourself with positivity – positive people attract other positive people!

Negative self-talk can affect so many areas of life, from personal to professional, nothing is exempt. When we retrain our brains to choose positivity over the negative thought patterns, we create a more healthy and happy life.

The best part about stopping negative self-talk and using positive affirmations is that the power is in our own hands. After all, we are the only ones in control of our own thoughts!

How To Build Social Confidence

Building social confidence is a process, but it’s possible and probably easier than you think!

If you’ve ever been in the presence of someone truly confident, it’s almost as if self-assurance is oozing from their pores and they remain unshaken no matter the circumstances.

Apprehension and intimidation don’t seem to even register on the socially confident person’s radar. They just are. And others flock around them in awe of their calm, cool and collected composure while at the center of attention.

And those who lack social confidence are typically standing back, away from the crowd, afraid they won’t fit in or be accepted should they attempt to be part of the “cool kids crowd”. It can be terrifying to a shy individual even contemplating interaction with those exuding social confidence with such ease.

There are so many hypothetical “what if’s” coupled with self-deprecating internal dialogue, it turns into just as much of a physical challenge as it is mental. It doesn’t have to be that way! Building social confidence is a process, but it’s possible and probably easier than you think!

Take a look at the following 5 steps to build social confidence.

Be a Better Version of You

This is what it’s all about; living the best possible life. If you are dissatisfied with something in your life, take action. Don’t just sit there and do nothing. In accepting the way things are, things you know you can change, you are basically telling yourself you aren’t worth putting in the effort to change and be better. And you are worth it!

Stop Comparing

Knock off the incessant comparisons to others. There will always be someone you feel is better than you in one way or another. Mary might have a wardrobe to die for, and Steve might be the most handsome person you’ve ever met.
So what! When you hold yourself to the standards of others’, you will never be truly happy in your own skin. You have to love you before anyone else will. That’s a huge factor in social confidence.

In fact, the performance or outer appearance of others shouldn’t even be used as a gauge. Keep striving to reach your goals until you are satisfied with the results. If you want a better wardrobe, work on it.

And don’t use money, or the lack thereof, as an excuse. There are entirely too many resources available now to purchase high-end items without breaking the bank.

Speaking of Excuses…

Excuses are shackles with which we bound ourselves. Excuses are unrealized fears. Think about something you’ve recently made an excuse not to do, buy or even make a goal.
For instance, if there’s a pair of shoes you’d love to have but made the excuse not to buy as the budget doesn’t allow it – did you shut the idea down immediately and “restrict” yourself from the shoes? You will never have the shoes because you didn’t even give it another thought.

Here’s the deal: If you really want something, you’ll make a way to make it happen. Find what’s going to make you happy from the inside out and do it. Don’t make excuses and set up limitations on your happiness. Happy people are confident people!

Ditch the Filters

We filter our photos, conversations, actions… basically everything. Pull back on the filtering a little bit and take a chance on being vulnerable. Let someone know what you are truly thinking or how you are really feeling.

Don’t turn the selfie you just took into a grayscale enhancement because you’re afraid the world will see a wrinkle or the bags under your eyes.
Let people see the real you, underneath all the filters. The person they want to get to know and spend time with. The socially confident person is vulnerable. It sounds insanely opposite, but it’s the truth.

They are confident enough to know that they aren’t everyone’s type, and everyone isn’t going to instantly befriend them. They are strong enough to shine through the chaos and negativity and surround themselves with the true gems they did find that like them for who they are, blemishes and all.

Exposure is Therapy

A common practice for therapists treating people with phobias is called exposure therapy. They are urged to take baby steps and go a little further each time with their phobias until it feels okay. Until it feels safe.

Exposure is extremely hard for some of us because we waste too much time being concerned with what other’s think of us. The more you test the waters, the easier it gets, thus the more confident you become.

See! Those steps aren’t that hard, right? It takes some effort, follow through and determination, but mostly it requires you being confident in yourself, not in what you think is the perception of others. Building social confidence starts on the inside and works its way out.