We all have an inner critic; it is the little voice that keeps whispering words inside our minds. At times, this voice can be helpful and keeps us motivated toward goals. However, this little voice can often be more harmful, especially when it brings excessive negativity. Psychologists call this negative self-talk, and it can truly bring anyone down. It can take many forms, sounding like a critical parent and may seem like a realistic appraisal of a situation, and if you’re not careful will create significant stress to you and those around you.
Negative self-talk will limit your ability to believe in yourself and your own abilities and reach your greatest potential. If the musing of your inner critic is not addressed, it can lead you to follow the path of catastrophizing, blaming, and greater feelings of helplessness— often linked to depression.
Those who find themselves caught up in negative internal monologue find it hard to experience more happiness and joy in life. Sometimes the things you tell yourself are straight-up lies. It’s time to stop the cycle of lies before it inflicts lasting damages on yourself. After all, you would never say critical things to a friend, would you? You’d probably rush to reassure them of their worth; you deserve to know this as well. Thus, it’s high time to reassure your own value; therefore, stop telling yourself:
So many people struggled with excruciating childhood wounds and traumas that are left untreated and scarred. It has led a lot of people to addictions, self-destructive behaviors, and self-loathing. If you feel broken, you’re not alone. All of us will be broken many times in life. The pain, hopelessness, and despair may have consumed you at one point, but always remember that you can survive through all these ordeals. Slowly, over time, life will get better, and you will get stronger. Don’t wallow in despair; all of these events, though painful at the time, are the catalysts to living your life to the fullest.
“I’m Not Good Enough.”
Out of all the lies you need to let go of is this particular one. This lie may have formed growing up, where you are often compared to another person. It can take years to unlearn this, especially when you’ve internalized this thought and have convinced yourself you're unworthy. But to set the record straight: you are enough as it is. Sometimes amid all the pressure, we forget all the wonderful, unique things about ourselves. Listening to the inner critic will ultimately tear apart self-esteem until you hate yourself too much. Everyone deserves to live without resenting one’s self, other people, or hurtful experiences.
“It’s Too Late for Me.”
We are never going to be as young as we were yesterday. Many people have lived an unfulfilled life. Wasting time and regretting things you’ve never done, seen, or tried will get you nowhere. Telling yourself that “it’s too late for me” is just the fear getting in your way. Age is just a number. It’s simply a measurement of time but not a barometer to restrict life. At the end of the day, one thing is certain: it is never too late to try. The life you’re living today is the only chance you get to do things you’ve always wanted to do.
Impossible is a word that works against us because everything is possible. The word itself says, “I’m possible,” we just don’t know how yet. By saying something is impossible, it denies your capabilities to do great things. Even hitting rock bottom, nothing is impossible. The good thing about hitting rock bottom is that you’ll only have one way: to go up. The Birds Still Sing by Grace Tallman is evidence that despite plunging into the depths of darkness, we can still come out strong and revitalized. Rock bottom is simply a stage. We have the power to make things work; we just need to go out there and find the way out. Nothing is impossible when you put your heart and mind into it.
“I’d Be Happy If I Had More Money.”
Studies have shown that happiness and money are only correlated, not dependent. Money can help you achieve goals, provide for the future, purchase things, and make life more enjoyable, but merely having those doesn’t guarantee fulfillment. It most certainly won’t change who you are under your skin. The key to finding happiness is to find a balance between having too little and having too much.
The road to self-love is a winding one, with plenty of self-talk as the navigation system. The way we communicate with ourselves plays a major role in how we see ourselves and experience the world around us. Thus, being mindful of these delicate, sometimes detrimental, words we use regularly is extremely important. Negative self-talk is in human nature, but this shouldn’t get the best of anyone.