Introduction:

We all face the struggles of negative self-talk on a daily basis. 

Negative thoughts are inescapable, and so we must recognize that our effort to overcome them should not be directed at trying to escape them, but rather to acknowledge them and recognize them for what they really are – just thoughts. 

Lisa A. Romano is a life coach and bestselling author specializing in helping people overcome co-dependence and narcissistic abuse. She has helped thousands of people take control of their lives and re-frame their thought process to be positive, optimistic and self-fulfilling. 

This simple checklist, intended to be run daily or at the very least, weekly, will enable you to follow Lisa's tried and tested method of overcoming negative self-talk. 

Observation:

Observe the negative thoughts of the inner critic

The first thing that needs to be done before you can successfully overcome negative self-talk is to simply observe the thoughts running through your head.

The word observe is incredibly important in that it must be taken literally. In other words, you must not do anything more than observe, you must not associate your thoughts to anything in particular. 

Just be aware of them and let them flow without you consciously attaching feelings or emotions to them.

Check the sub-checklist below to remind yourself 

  • 1
    Observe
  • 2
    Don't attach emotions or feelings to any thought
  • 3
    Let the thoughts flow through your mind

Become comfortable with lettings thoughts flow (no attachment)

Take a few minutes to really get comfortable with the process of observing a thought come into your mind and letting it keep moving, without grabbing onto it and unraveling the thought into smaller components. 

Think of it like this:

When you begin observing your thoughts during a period of self-abasement, your mind can feel like a storm in the ocean, with giant, aggressive waves crashing down onto you. 

By simply observing these thoughts (waves) and not empowering them by identifying with them through emotional association, the waves naturally calm down, the storm ends, and you are left with a calm sea; a calm mind. 

Remember: You are not your thoughts

YOU ARE NOT YOUR THOUGHTS.

As obvious as this statement may seem, we are all constantly fooled into believing that we are our thoughts.

We are identifying with thoughts constantly. But you must recognize the truth, which is that you are infinitely more complex than any thought could possibly be, and are not required to believe in any particular thought. 

Recognition that thoughts are just thoughts, and not you, is essential to overcoming negative self-talk

Disassociation:

Disassociate from the negative language

When you recognize the truth that you are NOT your thoughts, it becomes a lot easier to disidentify from the negative thinking going on inside your mind.

View your thoughts from a neutral, objective point of view. Just be curious about what is going on inside your mind rather than taking it personally and seriously. 

By doing so you can effortlessly disidentify from whatever negative thoughts are running around inside your head. 

Writing:

Write down the 5 most painful negative thoughts

Now, write down the 5 most painful, prominent negative comments you hear coming from your mind.

Then, number them 0-5, 5 being the most painful of all statements.

Rewrite the thoughts with loving messages

Now that you know what phrases are the most crippling and have successfully disassociated from them, you need to replace them with something, of course, something positive and loving towards yourself.

Go in and re-write (reframe) the thoughts into loving messages.

Scenario visualization:

Ask yourself: Would I use this negative language on my best friend?

This is an incredibly important question to ask yourself, because it completely changes the purpose of the thoughts/comments that you have confronted and re-framed into something positive. 

Imagine the impact the it would have on your 

Imagine yourself using the re-framed phrases on a loved one

Following on from the previous task, visualize yourself using the positively re-framed thoughts on a loved one, and imagine how good it would make them feel

Imagine the feeling of optimism and positivity that it would fill them with.

You deserve that feeling just as much as they do, and so understand that you must treat yourself with care and respect as you would treat someone you love.

Final step:

Feel proud of yourself for conquering negative thinking

You've done an awesome job!

Feel good about your willingness to conquer the negative self-talk burdening your mind. 

It's not easy to tame our inner critic, and you are making the conscious effort to do so.

Sources:

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