Happiness Tip #3: Leverage the Power of Positive Self Talk

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All of us talk to ourselves (I really hope I’m right on that one, if not this blog post is going to get real weird, real fast for most of you). So let’s assume everyone is like me and we all talk to ourselves throughout the day. Our minds are a running dialogue. The words we silently speak to ourselves throughout the day are critical. To take it one step further, they are life changing. You become what you repeatedly think. That is why positive self talk and using positive affirmations is super important in leading a happy and fulfilling life.

Y’all, we (humans) are pretty amazing. We actually have the power to alter our future using just our thoughts. I know that sounds a little out there, but it’s true. When we think positive thoughts (even if they aren’t true) our brain tries to reconcile those thoughts and make them true. For example, lets say you wake up one morning and you just aren’t feeling it -you’re tired, you want to go back to sleep and wait for tomorrow. If, in that split second you trade the thoughts of “ugh, I’m so tired I want to keep sleeping, I’m so jealous of sloths and babies and how much they get to sleep and how they aren’t responsible for anything” to “I’m ready to conquer the day, this is going to be the best day ever and I know I’m going to get so much accomplished” awesome things will happen. Now, I know that second train of thought isn’t actually how you feel, but using those positive thoughts (even if they aren’t currently true) will trick your brain into making them true. You will feel more energy, your blood will start pumping, your attitude has changed, and you will most likely conquer your day!

Here’s a great picture to illustrate if that got a little confusing:

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To my knowledge, science hasn’t proven specifically why or how positive affirmations work but it has proven that they do work. Positive self talk and using positive affirmations are linked to a lot of great benefits, here are a few:

  • Increased confidence
  • Better problem solving skills
  • Greater self worth
  • Lower stress levels
  • Greater physical strength

There are strategies on what types of affirmations to use (here are 100 examples) and the time of day it’s best to use them. Implementing these strategies is a great proactive approach. But if you’re more reactive in nature, just try to recognize when those negative thoughts creep in and turn the tables. Just saying “I CAN do this” instead of “I can’t do this” is a great starting point.

I’m going to share a slightly embarrassing but really effective form of positive self talk I use. A few years ago I noticed I was feeling down a lot, I knew I used to be really confident but somehow over my college years I lost that self-esteem I had as a kid. One day I heard this song called “All I Do is Win” by DJ Kahled… admittedly, I can’t understand most the lyrics because I’m from the south and my mind doesn’t listen fast enough for rap music- but I know the chorus(?) and it basically goes like this “All I Do is Win”… simple enough. That became my theme song. It gives me a burst fake confidence but most of the time I can’t tell the difference between fake confidence and real confidence so it does the trick. If I’m feeling down I turn on that song or play it in my head and it works. So what I’m getting at here, is you have to find what form of positive self talk and which affirmations work for you. Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box.

You are awesome and you are capable of anything; you just have to believe that and repeat it to yourself on a daily basis. Seriously, to at least one person (if not many) you are a super hero so start treating yourself like one! On that note – here is a great reminder of the power of positive thinking (and posing).

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