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How To Reduce Negative Self-Talk To Lead A Much More Satisfying Life

How To Reduce Negative Self-Talk To Lead A Much More Satisfying Life

“Be mindful of your self-talk. It is a conversation with the universe. You are a being, full of infinite possibilities! Focus your mind with positivity and you will have dictated the direction of your journey, your soul and your being, cascading in infinite abundance.” – Angie Karan

What is self-talk?

You know your inner voice? Those silent conversations you have with yourself? This is what is known as self-talk. Self-talk will be a combination of positive, negative and neutral thoughts.

Examples of positive self-talk include:

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  • “I can do this.”
  • “I am smart.”
  • “This is a challenge, but I will complete it.”

Examples of negative self-talk include:

  • “I’m stupid.”
  • “I can’t do this.”
  • “I’m a failure.”
  • “I’m worthless.”

Research has shown that the optimum ratio for no stress in your life is two positive thoughts for every negative thought. It then is vitally important to be cognizant of your internal dialogue as it influences not only your feelings, and your behaviors, but also your well-being as a whole.

A wandering mind is a dangerous mind

Considering you have over 50,000 thoughts per day – the majority of which are automatic and below our conscious level, it becomes even more important to ‘observe’ this self-talk. Your mind is a wandering machine. It wanders without you even knowing it:

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“Forty-seven percent of the time, the average mind is wandering. It wanders about a third of the time while a person is reading, talking with other people, or taking care of children. It wanders 10 percent of the time, even, during sex.” – James Hamblin, The Atlantic

And a wandering mind can be dangerous. If you fail to stop and analyze the validity of your self-talk, particularly negative self-talk, you compromise your well-being. Through repeated negative self-talk you begin to believe you are useless, worthless and a failure. This dents your confidence and induces stress.

How to improve your self-talk

Improving your self-talk will not happen overnight, as negative self-talk has become a habit from being often repeated over years. But it is possible. It starts with listening to your thoughts.

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  • Listen to what you are saying

Many of your thoughts are subconscious. It is not an easy task to listen to this subconscious thoughts. Over time – with practice, it is more than possible to access these innermost dialogues. You can do this by taking note of what you are saying. Start journaling. Write them down. Getting your thoughts on to paper frees your mind; allowing you to put things in the past and move forward.

  • Monitor what you are saying

Ask yourself whether your self-talk is positive or negative. Negative self-talk is inaccurate, unreasonable and unhelpful. If not monitored, it can become a bad habit.

Ask yourself the following questions:

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  1. How does it make me feel?
  2. Is there evidence for my thoughts?
  3. Are they reasonable?
  4. What purpose do they serve?
  • You need to take action

Through identifying them, you can challenge them, thus allowing you to approach things differently.

Ask yourself more questions:

  1. How can I look at this in a positive way?
  2. How can I change what I am thinking?
  • Consider sharing your self-talk with others

Not only does this allow you to vent and free your mind, it can also help you attain a fresh perspective. Looking at something from an outsider’s point of view sheds a new light on your problems.

The internal dialogue will not stop

The internal dialogue within you will never stop. 50,000 thoughts a day is testament to this. But, if you fail to pay attention to these dialogues, you may find that negative self-talk becomes your way of life. Through listening to your inner voice, monitoring your self-talk and taking steps to change your way of thinking, you will be well on your way to a more satisfied life.

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Nick Darlington

Nick is a Multipotentialite, an entrepreneur, a blogger and a traveler.

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Last Updated on September 28, 2020

How To Study Effectively: 7 Simple Tips

How To Study Effectively: 7 Simple Tips

The brain is a tangled web of information. We don’t remember single facts, but instead we interlink everything by association. Anytime we experience a new event, our brains tie the sights, smells, sounds and our own impressions together into a new relationship.

Our brain remembers things by repetition, association, visual imagery, and all five senses. By knowing a bit about how the brain works, we can become better learners, absorbing new information faster than ever.

Here are some study tips to help get you started:

1. Use Flashcards

Our brains create engrained memories through repetition. The more times we hear, see, or repeat something to ourselves, the more likely we are to remember it.

Flashcards can help you learn new subjects quickly and efficiently. Flashcards allow you to study anywhere at any time. Their portable nature lends them to quick study sessions on the bus, in traffic, at lunch, or in the doctor’s office. You can always whip out your flashcards for a quick 2 to 3 minute study session.

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To create effective flashcards, you need to put one point on each flashcard. Don’t load up the entire card with information. That’s just overload. Instead, you should dedicate one concept to each card.

One of the best ways to make flashcards is to put 1 question on the front and one answer on the back. This way, you can repeatedly quiz yourself into you have mastered any topic of your choice.

Commit to reading through your flash cards at least 3 times a day and you will be amazed at how quickly you pick up new information.

As Tony Robbins says,

“Repetition is the mother of skill”.

2. Create the Right Environment

Often times, where you study can be just as important as how you study. For an optimum learning environment, you’ll want to find a nice spot that is fairly peaceful. Some people can’t stand a deafening silence, but you certainly don’t want to study near constant distractions.

Find a spot that you can call your own, with plenty of room to spread out your stuff. Go there each time you study and you will find yourself adapting to a productive study schedule. When you study in the same place each time, you become more productive in that spot because you associate it with studying.

3. Use Acronyms to Remember Information

In your quest for knowledge, you may have once heard of an odd term called “mnemonics”. However, even if you haven’t heard of this word, you have certainly heard of its many applications. One of the most popular mnemonic examples is “Every Good Boy Does Fine”. This is an acronym used to help musicians and students to remember the notes on a treble clef stave.

An acronym is simply an abbreviation formed using the intial letters of a word. These types of memory aids can help you to learn large quantities of information in a short period of time.

4. Listen to Music

Research has long shown that certain types of music help you to recall information. Information learned while listening to a particular song can often be remembered simply by “playing” the songs mentally in your head.

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5. Rewrite Your Notes

This can be done by hand or on the computer. However, you should keep in mind that writing by hand can often stimulate more neural activity than when writing on the computer.

Everyone should study their notes at home but often times, simply re-reading them is too passive. Re-reading your notes can cause you to become disengaged and distracted.

To get the most out of your study time, make sure that it is active. Rewriting your notes turns a passive study time into an active and engaging learning tool. You can begin using this technique by buying two notebooks for each of your classes. Dedicate one of the notebooks for making notes during each class. Dedicate the other notebook to rewriting your notes outside of class.

6. Engage Your Emotions

Emotions play a very important part in your memory. Think about it. The last time you went to a party, which people did you remember? The lady who made you laugh, the man who hurt your feelings, and the kid who went screaming through the halls are the ones you will remember. They are the ones who had an emotional impact.

Fortunately, you can use the power of emotion in your own study sessions. Enhance your memory by using your five senses. Don’t just memorize facts. Don’t just see and hear the words in your mind. Create a vivid visual picture of what you are trying to learn.

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For example, if you are trying to learn the many parts of a human cell, begin physically rotating the cell in your minds eye. Imagine what each part might feel like. Begin to take the cell apart piece by piece and then reconstruct it. Paint the human cell with vivid colors. Enlarge the cell in your mind’s eye so that it is now six feet tall and putting on your own personal comedy show. This visual and emotional mind play will help deeply encode information into your memory.

7. Make Associations

One of the best ways to learn new things is to relate what you want to learn with something you already know. This is known as association, and it is the mental glue that drives your brain.

Have you ever listened to a song and been flooded by memories that were connected to it? Have you ever seen an old friend that triggered memories from childhood? This is the power of association.

To maximize our mental powers, we must constantly be looking for ways to relate new information with old ideas and concepts that we are already familiar with.

You can do this with the use of mindmapping. A mind map is used to diagram words, pictures, thoughts, and ideas into a an interconnected web of information. This simple practice will help you to connect everything you learn into a global network of knowledge that can be pulled from at any moment.

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Learn more about mindmapping here: How to Mind Map to Visualize Your Thoughts (With Mind Map Examples)

Featured photo credit: Alissa De Leva via unsplash.com

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