Personal Development

4 Ways To Defeat Negative Self-Talk

Do you ever say things to yourself that make you feel bad? If you answered “yes” to this question, you are not alone. In fact, it is estimated that up to 95 percent of your thoughts are negative ones. What does this mean?

You are basically your own worst enemy. Your negative thoughts and attitude could be preventing you from living the life you want to live. Why not change how you think?

As humans, we are generally the toughest critic of our own. You’re probably familiar with the voice in the back of your mind reminding you that you’re not capable of achieving your goals. This voice is a liar and leads to feelings of depression and anxiety.

The sad truth about this voice is that it’s talking to you. It’s your own inner critic. If you want to move forward with your goals of self-development, you definitely have to stop beating yourself up and look out for negative self-talk.

The tips you’ll read in this article will provide you with the resources you need to conquer this “stinking kind of thinking” and turn it around to become a message to yourself that lets you shine.

Take Notice

To start breaking the habit of putting yourself down, you must first be mindful of when and why you do it. Pay attention to the moments during the day that you feel bad because of a message you’ve sent to yourself.

The way your body responds to these situations will normally alert you to them. When people become angry or anxious, they can experience muscle tension in their shoulders. When you notice a symptom like this, try to figure out what you’re feeling and what’s causing it.

In certain instances, an outside source, such as a colleague’s remark, might be to blame, but sometimes the emotion is triggered or compounded by your own internal negative messaging and response to an outside occurrence. Write these items down for at least a week, and search for trends like causes or events that accompany your negative self-talk.

Go Easy

Advising you to be gentle with yourself can seem simplistic, but if you want to break the toxic cycle of sending self-limiting messages, you must start by being gentle with yourself. Consider if the things you’re saying to yourself are words you’d say to someone you care for.

You’re definitely not going to do anything like that. You most likely try to be compassionate and helpful to the people in your life. Why not use the same technique while conversing with yourself? This will also help ease any anxiety and lack of motivation, increasing your self-confidence ultimately leading to a more fulfilling life where more happiness exists.


It is just too easy to persuade ourselves that we’re not valuable or that we have some fatal flaw. Reach out to friends or family for a reality check when you’re feeling particularly down on yourself. Checking in with those who care for you will remind you of all your good qualities and that you’re only going through a rough time, which is completely normal.

At these moments, listen to what others have to say to you without arguing or objecting. These people have been put in your life for a reason. They wouldn’t stay if they didn’t think highly of you. Put some of your faith and trust in their judgment.

Note the Positive

Everyone has positive things to say about themselves. And, you as well. Despite your reluctance, force yourself to list at least ten positive qualities, talents, or attributes about yourself. It may be a physical characteristic, an ability, or something distinctive about your personality. Simply keep going until you have a list of ten things.

Refer to this list if you’re feeling down about yourself for a quick pick-me-up when you need it the most, these work as positive affirmations about you. Make it a point to add to your list on a regular basis. If you do, it won’t be long before you start seeing yourself in a new light, as well as start believing in yourself.

Overcoming negative self-talk takes time and commitment. It is difficult to overcome a lifetime of toxic messaging. It is, however, a necessary step on your path to self-actualization.

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