Part Three- Self-Talk
There are different levels of self-talk. The most frequently used self-talk is negative acceptance. Basically, we say something negative about ourselves and then just blindly accept it as truth, whether it is or not. This kind of self-talk of negative acceptance lands us all the way down on the bottom at level one.
Level two isn’t much better than level one. Level two is recognition and a need for change. We can recognize this level through such statements as: “I need to… I should… I ought to…” On the surface level, level two doesn’t look so bad, but here’s the problem with it. Level two starts off on the right foot with recognizing an areas that needs improvement, but where it falls down on the job is that it doesn’t offer a solution. Thus, it subconsciously becomes, “I wish I could… but I can’t…” So, instead of giving birth to accomplishment and what’s possible it creates guilt and acceptance of our own self-imagined inadequacies. This is a bad thing. So, let’s try not to do this one, okay?
Next is level three of self-talk. Now, we’re getting somewhere. This is the first level of self-talk that actually works for us instead of against us, according to Dr. Helmstetter. Level three of self-talk is characterized by things like, “I never…” or “I no longer…” In level three we’re rephrasing old negatives and putting them behind us as we start in a new better direction. For example, if we’re smokers who want to quit, our lives will eventually change if we continuously and strongly say to ourselves, “I no longer smoke!”
And the great thing is that it doesn’t even have to be true yet. We can actually start practicing this level three of self-talk saying we no longer smoke while we’re still smoking. According to Dr. Helmstetter, if we say that we no longer smoke often enough, and with enough intensity, our minds will begin to believe it and then smoking will lose its appeal and hold on us.
Level four is the opposite of level one. This is the one we use least, but need the most. This is also the one that is most effective and gets us the best results. Here, we’re painting a whole new picture of ourselves of how we want it to be. This level of self-talk can usually be identified when people says, “I am…”
Level four is positive self-talk that takes place in the present rather than the past or future. Level four is exciting and gives us energy to push forward in creating the new and betterinternal picture of ourselves for real.
Dan Blanchard is an award-winning author, speaker and educator. Learn more about Dan at: www.DanBlanchard.net. Check out Dan’s teen leadership book at: http://tinyurl.com/glxzjaf