Words are powerful. Words are how we communicate to others as well as to ourselves. Have you listened lately to what you say to yourself?
When was the last time you called yourself a “failure”, “loser”, “fat”, “useless”, “pathetic”, “idiot” and so on? Sometimes we mutter under our breaths, i.e., with saying “I’m stupid”, when we make a mistake.
Don’t use this language! Not only is it not accurate but this language negatively affects our self-confidence (our ability to complete a task) and self-esteem (how we feel about ourselves).
What if this negative self-talk, what we say about ourselves to ourselves, comes out before we can stop it? Then correct yourself even if it’s after the fact. For instance, as you’re walking on a path, you trip and call yourself “stupid”
I was showing my kids how to use some weight equipment and they asked how much weight I could do so I did a set. They exclaimed, “you make it look so easy” and referred to themselves as “weak”. I informed them I’ve been weight training for many years so I wasn’t born this way. Everyone has a starting point and if they continue working out they will only get stronger.
Another example is when I invited my kids to do a drop set doing bicep curls. My daughter gave me that “teenage look” and said “you suck”. That kind of language made me smile because I knew she was going to do the drop set despite not liking it. And she still loved me afterwards so all is good … until the next time I practise tough love.
Getting back to the negative self-talk. How do you change it? How do you stop yourself from calling yourself names, putting yourself down, or never being happy with the way you look (both the general public and bodybuilders)?
The solution is to talk back to the negative side but use logic, facts. Once you’re aware you’re using negative self-talk, get real! Ask yourself what fact are you basing that thought/feeling on? If there is some truth to it, then ask yourself what can you do to change that truth? For instance, if you’re calling yourself “fat”, strategize or hire a coach for direction and accountability to work on fat loss.
When was the last time you did the word balance game? This is finding the positive ‘spin’ to a negative thought. I’ll use myself as an example. I’m stubborn (yes that’s a fact) but oftentimes stubborn is seen as a negative trait. My positive spin on being stubborn is being relentless, persistent. I don’t give up. I may need to change my direction but I keep going.
If you’re struggling dealing with your negative self-talk, please contact me at (416) 805-6155 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org so I can coach you on strategies that squash that talk.