Advertising
Advertising

A Fun Way To Silence Your Inner Bullies

A Fun Way To Silence Your Inner Bullies

Have you ever wondered if there’s a way to turn off some of those critical voices inside your mind? Sometimes they just go on and on, don’t they? If you have some challenges with negative self-talk, or if you get stuck on remembering hurtful things people have said to you in the past, this quick and fun NLP technique just might work wonders for you.

The aim of this exercise is to help you rapidly achieve more peace of mind, and to gain more mastery over your emotional state, all of which will improve your overall level of happiness and sense of emotional well-being.

Advertising

NLP is short for Neuro-Linguistic Programming. It was developed over the past few decades by Richard Bandler, John Grinder, and then others. It’s used in a variety of professional fields such as sports coaching, education, and trauma recovery. Ideally, NLP works like a skeleton key for reprogramming your brain and nervous system.

The programming part of NLP works very much like programming computer software. Though not a perfect metaphor, by thinking of your brain as a computer, you can install a new program, uninstall an obsolete program, or modify an existing program.

Advertising

Programs are designed to help us do specific things like be a thrifty shopper. Another example could be a gaming program that helps kids wind down after school. The goal of working with programs in an NLP context is to find the ones that aren’t getting us what we want, and then modify those programs in some way. If a program is causing more grief than it’s worth, it can sometimes be uninstalled. If the program seems to be hard-wired in and resistant to being altogether removed, another option is to try and overwrite the disc with a new and improved program. But that can involve some more complex processes than we are delving into today so we’ll save them for another time.

Today we’ll play with modifying an existing program. One that’s causing us some discomfort. One that starts up at the worst times and replays over and over. We might even scramble it and throw it in the recycling bin. Here are the steps. It only takes five minutes and a playful imagination.

Advertising

NLP Technique for Scrambling Negative Self-Talk

  1. If you were to imagine your favorite actor or actress speaking to you in a really seductive “bedroom voice,” what would that be like?
  2. As you enjoy this experience, allow yourself to become aware of where the voice is located. Notice all the qualities of the voice including: volume, tone, pitch, and pacing.
  3. Put that aside for a moment.
  4. Now consider how it feels and sounds when you are thinking negatively about yourself and saying critical things to yourself. Listen to your self-criticism…
  5. As you replay those harsh critical comments, what happens if you now change the tonality into the “sexy bedroom voice?”
  6. As you replay those harsh critical comments, what happens if you now change the tonality into a silly cartoon character like Donald Duck or Scooby Doo?
  7. Replay some of your typical negative self-talk with this new cartoon tonality and see how your feelings lighten up!
  8. To get even better results, keep playing with the volume tone, pitch, and pacing. Try speeding it up and raising the pitch really high like Alvin the Chipmunk. After playing with that, try slowing it down to the point that it is deep and warbly, like its battery is dying. If you have a sense of space, try imagining the voice moving far, far away into the distance and maybe even drifting out of the atmosphere into space…

Keep playing with the sound quality until you feel a positive shift inside. Take a listen inside and see if that negative commentary has now been scrambled and neutralized. If a lot of emotional energy is released, you might perspire or feel the need to sit down for a moment. If so, that’s perfectly natural and happens to many people. Pause for just a moment now and see how you feel.

Advertising

To find out if this worked well for you, try to recall the upsetting sound as you used to hear it. Do you still hear it in the same old way? More importantly, check to find out whether or not you still feel upset when you replay it. The negative emotional charge should be gone.

If you find that this technique does in fact work wonders for you, keep it in your tool box for future use. For example, suppose your boss or family member says something critical to you. If you have any difficulty letting it go, you can use this technique to scramble the audio, turn down the volume, and get back to enjoying some peace of mind.

Featured photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/klearchos/ via flic.kr

More by this author

A Fun Way To Silence Your Inner Bullies

Trending in Communication

1 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way 2 How to Break Free From Negative Thinking for Good 3 15 Simple Things You Can Do to Boost Your Daily Motivation 4 How to Say No When You Know You Say Yes Too Often 5 Feeling Super Stressed? Do This Daily Routine Every Day

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

Advertising

2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

Advertising

Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

Advertising

12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

Read Next