How do you speak to yourself? Do you even really take any time to think about how you speak to yourself and the impact that can have on your health and wellbeing? While listening to motivational speeches can be great, it’s equally important that we pay attention to our ‘self-talk’. Additionally, the effect of positive affirmations is doubled when coupled with positive self-talk. Here’s why self-talk is essential to your health and wellbeing, and why you might include it in your self-care routine.
Self-talk benefits both your physical and psychological health
The benefits of self-talk are undeniable; numerous studies show that positive thinking and good words affect your mind, body, and soul and improve your physical health.
Positive self-talk lowers stress levels, increases coping skills, improves endurance during workouts, elevates resistance against the common cold, improves heart health and increases lifespan. And these are just some of the benefits of including self-talk in your daily routine.
These benefits come from introducing a positive environment instead of dwelling in the negativity that brings negative emotions and produces the stress hormone, cortisol. Cortisol can endanger your health if you have high levels of it in your body for long periods of time. It can increase your risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, gut imbalance, and high blood pressure.
And of course, instead of just relying on motivational videos that you watch on YouTube (although there’s nothing wrong with that!), the effect is greater if you practice self-talk regularly simply because the words that you use for self-talk are based on your current, individual situation; whereas the motivational materials that you read and hear are quite generic and might not apply to you, 100%.
Incorporating self-talk into your daily routine
It may feel a little awkward to you the first few times if you’ve never done this before, and that’s okay. A little bit of practice for you to get used to it will ensure that you stay committed with the self-talk routine.
Start by identifying negative self-talk… we need to remove this self-talk to get the benefits from the positive. Negative self-talk is common as it comes from self-doubts and limitations imposed on you when you’re young (or even now) that take up a permanent residence in your mind. Once you’ve identified any of the negatives or self-doubts that you have, counter them with positive words that you truly identify with.
For example, if you’re not feeling capable of handling a big project, ask yourself why and where this doubt comes from. Chances are the doubts and limitations you’ve been thinking are not real and if they are, you can surely find a solution to it (such as finding a mentor for guidance or get a team that is helpful to each other). Then begin to affirm to yourself that you are capable, you are worthy, you are the right person to complete this project.
Once you’ve identified your limitations and created positive self-talk and affirmation to counter them, use these each day to prime and assure your mind.
Over time this will become a daily part of your routine…identify the negative self-talk, rewrite it in the positive, and affirm to yourself.
Tip: do your affirmations every morning and night when your mind is not active that it’s easier to prime the mind with positive words, effectively.
Trust me, do this routine for a week and you’ll see how it changes your life for the better.
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