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Hola amigos! Hope you all are doing well and keeping safe. Many of us have got time enough to sit around contemplating the meaning of life and the purpose of our existence this lockdown. In many cases this thought process eventually leads to introspection of our triumphs and failures.

Our mind is our greatest admirer and worst critic. Many a times this little voice motivates us to accomplish our goals. At other times it warns us against pursuing tasks outside our level of competence. However, this voice may get harmful instead of helpful if it associates with too much negativity and dims all the positive thought process. This is known as Negative Self-Talk and it can adversely affect our mind, body and our social life.

What is Negative Self-Talk?

In simple words it is the inner discussion that you have with yourself in your mind which makes you doubt your abilities and lowers your self esteem. It could be an ordinary occurrence for e.g. consider this scenario; ‘You are not very good at cooking. One day you try to make an item of your choice but it didn’t turn out well. You start thinking that you don’t have the ability to cook anything. This would gradually lead to a deep seated fear of cooking and you may also give up cooking altogether because every time you would think about making something you would be reminded of your failure and will experience a feeling of defeat even before trying.’

a man holds his head while sitting on a sofa

Consequences:

Negative self talk has pretty damaging side effects.

  • It leads to a sense of decreased motivation and helplessness.
  • The individual may start thinking of himself as useless burden to others.
  • It decreases the confidence and lowers the morale of a person.
  • The more you tell yourself you can’t do something, the more you believe it and slowly and steadily you would stop believing in yourself and would never be satisfied with your work.
  • Self blame can also lead to no peace of mind which is one of the prime reasons for depression.

It’s all in your head:

In order to get over this self destructive habit you first need to realise that there is little or no truth in your thoughts and musings. No one hates you or thinks too low of you unlike what your inner voice suggests. Once you realise this, you will have an easier time breaking out of your reverie.

Some ways to help you silence your inner bitch or get immune to it are mentioned below:

  • Before the onset of a task, recall your triumphs and remind yourself that you were, are and will always be a winner. Go lift the Mjolnir, you are worthy.  
  • Give your inner critic a name, a funny one would be preferred as it would help you to take criticism in a light way and not give it much importance.
  • Give yourself a break and pamper yourself with good food, a new novel, a web series, maybe a spa or some computer games if you have gone through a rough patch lately. This will help you to stop thinking about it.

In the end just remember you are important and you deserve your peace of mind. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, not even your own mind.

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About Post Author

Saumya Suman

Saumya is a curious and tempestuous undergrad pursuing her BTech. degree from Bangalore Institute Technology. She is an avid reader and a numerate.
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