I do find I catch myself with negative self-talk in terms of what I should be doing, or how I would like to feel and what I would like to do, and also sometimes even not thinking I am good enough for something or even wondering why someone isn't speaking with me or wondering what I did wrong when maybe it wasn't even about me. I think if we are honest with us we would find we don't do a lot of self-happy talks. Can you imagine how life would be and how we would feel if we did?
I was speaking with a patient by Skype the other week and I was listening to the language she was using. I heard phrases like, the other women in my family have people to live for and I don't, and I don't have anything I feel passionate about, and I don't do well with groups. While it is true that those words describe what she was feeling at the time, as I listened to more I also heard her say things like, I was more spontaneous with the people at work this time, and I want to be healthy, and I want to live healthily, and I am looking for recipes I like. These were all words she used in a much fuller discussion, but they were words that stood out. As we worked together she was able to come to the place where she heard both sides of her words, the more negative self-talk and the more positive. I asked her if it is correct to say that while her women family members seem to live for their children and others, she is different by being able to live for herself? She heard these words and took them in and said that yes, she does live for herself. As we continued to work she was even able to say that she wants to live healthily and be healthy and that she does feel passionate about food in that she wants to use it as healthy medicine and also that taste is very important to her.
She was able to take words she speaks to herself and able to re-frame them to self-talk words that speak more of who she is becoming and of appreciating some of her life and some of who she is as a person. Are they happy talk words? In a sense, I would say that yes they are. They are words which speak a truth for her and that engage her in a fuller and happier way. What would happy talk words be for you so that you can become happier, more vital and more whole?
Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life:
First of all, sit down and get comfortable, uncross your legs and place them on the ground. Clear your mind with 2 or 3 deep breaths. Now, close your eyes and let thoughts just cross your mind and open your awareness to notice the thoughts that come to you. Just notice the words and/or feelings without any judgment or censor. Now ask yourself what words or phrases do you find that you think about; just what comes to your mind. What do you find yourself thinking? Do you wake up thinking certain things or do you find yourself thinking certain repetitive phrases? Just notice.
Now take a minute and what would be true happy talk for you? How would that sound and feel to you? Repeat your happy talk a couple of times. It could be silly, funny, or even a positive reframe. Now take a couple deep breaths and open your eyes. Grab a pen and write down your initial self-talk and then your happy talk. Read it over a few times upon waking in the morning.