How Are You Speaking to Yourself?

12/05/2017 10:46 am ET Updated Dec 05, 2017

I was listening to a podcast the other day and was reminded that…

Our beliefs become our reality.

Seeing as we talk to ourselves all day long, this creates a huge opportunity to choose our words wisely.

To choose to think about ourselves with kindness, positivity and open possibilities.

So, take a moment and pause to think about your day today.

Comb through your memories of today and notice how you have spoken to or treated yourself.

I hope it’s with kindness, but if not – what’s it going to take to start? Think about the impact your words could have if you actually chose to think about yourself with acceptance, patience and kindness?

It’s up to you because nobody is in your mind to shut down that inner meanness or negativity.

Only you can.

It truly is a choice.

I know this because of my own journey of choosing to be kind and accepting of myself. It’s a habit I had to intentionally create. At first, it took a lot of effort but not anymore.

I NEVER would have posted the accompanying photo in my former way of living. This extends beyond the post itself – I never would have asked a professional to take pictures of me or allowed myself to take delight in asking my dear friend @janicemeredith to do my hair and makeup.

I never would have done any of this because the voice in my head would have been screaming “people will think you are too high on yourself”. Growing up, I remember not wanting to even wear my hair down because of the worry that people would think I was trying to look good. I hated walking in front of groups of people because I kept choosing to assume that people would be critical about what they saw.

The negative voice in my head was so harsh and mean…and this was just about my looks. My inner critical voice didn’t stop there - it was so loud about not being smart enough, not making mistakes, etc.

But I got over myself. I got out of my own way.

I remember the exact moment I was done with not accepting myself for exactly who I am and how god made me.

I had just completed an exercise during my coaching certification where for three minutes, someone stood in front of me and shared all of the wonderful things they saw in me. All I could do was cry and cry and cry. Then for the next three minutes, a new person came and stood in front of me and did the same. All I could do was cry and cry and cry. I actually knew that what they were saying was true, but I had no idea how or that it was even ‘ok’ to receive it. Then for the next three minutes, I had to tell another person all of the wonderful things about me. Guess what I did? I cried.

Once the grueling nine minutes were over, we had a group debrief. It was in that moment that I witnessed this middle-aged woman speaking about herself with such love and kindness that I realized…

THERE’S NO EGO IN BEING KIND TO OURSELVES. IN LOVING AND ACCEPTING OURSELVES.

It was in that moment, standing there, that I literally decided to draw a line in the sand. I vowed to stop putting myself down, expecting the worst, and playing small.

To choose to start showing up as my full self and owning my power to just be me.

I am living proof that it’s possible.

It’s available to all of us because none of the details around you are going to change, just how you choose to respond to them can.

What are you waiting for?

Don’t put off choosing to be kind to yourself until you achieve a goal or milestone like getting promotion, making more money, losing the weight, get married, etc. Choosing to trust that you are more than good enough in this moment has nothing to do with external accomplishments. A great book that depicts this is “The Leader Who Had No Title” by Robin Sharma.

My wish for you, if you don’t already, is to start owning your power – your value that you inherently bring to everything you do.

To choose to speak to yourself with kindness.

You wouldn’t speak to anyone else like you speak to yourself.

If your beliefs become your reality, your negative thoughts will keep you from thriving, finding more joy, success and happiness. Your inner voice is keeping you playing small.

There are 3 ways you can start today:

1| Just be You.

We seem to forget that all of the pictures in magazines are photoshopped. Our social media feeds are curated to only share images of A games.

What does comparing yourself to others bring to you?

Nothing good I’d suspect.

When we start to be kind to ourselves and love ourselves, just the way we are – it’s such a powerful gift. I dare you to actually take it one step further and choose to be happy for the person sharing the post.

If you don’t think it’s possible – bullshit. Here’s an incredible woman to follow on Instagram named Turia Pitt who exudes confidence, has an amazing sense of humour, and is a gift to this earth.

2 | Say “thank you”.

When someone gives you a compliment, accept it and own it. Take a moment to appreciate it. Say thank you.

Stop deflecting, downplaying, or negating compliments. It’s crazy how often we do this on autopilot because of the stories we’ve told ourselves our entire lives – like not wanting to appear that we have an ego, are full of ourselves, or we think we’re better than others, etc.

3 | 24 Hour Challenge

For the next 24 hours I challenge you to be hyper aware of your thoughts.

Every time you are having a negative thought, pause and choose to reframe.

For this challenge, I dare you to track the number of times you choose to reframe during the 24 hours. Tally them and at the end of the day. First, celebrate the choices you made because you have just started to create a new and empowering habit and second, notice the impact on the day by having made these choices.

You’ll know you are in a negative thought simply because you’ll feel it. Don’t worry, negative thoughts are allowed to surface, but it’s how we chose to respond to them that is the game changer.

For example, I am writing this in the morning and so far I’ve chosen to reframe twice – in spite of the fact that reframing is my new autopilot response, sometimes I still have to be really intentional about it.

On my 6am walk I started to think about the fact that I was procrastinating taking action to invite participants into a new project I am working on (stay tuned by following me - it’s super exciting!). I started to tell myself I was procrastinating and avoiding asking out of fear. Instead of spiralling down the rabbit hole, I chose to change my thought and to find a new and empowering perspective that ended up enticing me to make time to outreach today. I reminded myself that my “come from” is always about being in service and that’s what I am doing. That this project is something I will regret in the long run if I never try, to trust that I have nothing to lose, and to proceed with joy and curiosity.

My new perspectives were so much more productive than my critical thinking.

It all comes down to our choices.

Think about what’s possible if you truly start to stop the mean, critical or negative voice in your head.

So much!

I’d love to hear how it goes. Share with me via any of my social platforms Instagram: @getoutofownway | Twitter: @Turnercoaching or request to join and share in our GOOYOW, closed Facebook Group. Come and take part in this #PowerTribe.

Victoria Turner is an executive coach, founder of Your Power Outlet and chief igniter of the #PowerTribe. Victoria believes that we are the biggest obstacles standing in our own way of success, whatever that looks like for you. Victoria facilitates groups of professional women within companies and conferences to replace the habits that are keeping them stuck with ones that enable them to achieve their desired outcomes at work and in life. All of Victoria’s work is based on her proprietary Your P.O.W.E.R System™: 5 Fundamental Principals to Generate Results and to Live Your Best Life™. Be sure to follow Victoria on social media to be one of the first to hear about her new #PowerTribe project.

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