Negative self-talk sneaks into our conversations, even the ones we have with ourselves, every single day. We tell our coworkers we’re not on our “A-game”; we tell our spouses our cooking’s bad; we tell ourselves we’re not any good without thinking twice about it.

Negative self-talk has become so common in casual conversations, there’s even a name for it: self-deprecating humor. We do this to seem humble, make someone else feel better about themselves, or lower someone’s expectations of us. Sure, there are short term advantages, but negative self-talk is damaging in the long run.

Even jokes hurt. Telling everyone, “I’m such a dork,” does real harm. One joke at a time, we’re talking ourselves out of having healthy ol’ self-esteem.

No matter how you look at it, we’ve gotten used to bullying ourselves. So how do we escape the social norm?

Today, I’m inviting you to challenge the negative thoughts running through your head. Instead of discouraging yourself, try encouraging yourself for a change; you’ll be amazed at the real results.

Talking yourself up instead of down, you’ll feel more and more that you’re being yourself. That’s because, at the core of self-sabotaging thoughts, is our all-too-human fear of failing expectations—the ones we have for ourselves, the ones other people have for us.

Wabi-sabi, the Japanese aesthetic stating that the beauty of something lies in its flaws, is my resilience method’s fundamental tenet. Once you’ve reached a true understanding of the wabi-sabi aesthetic, you won’t have any need for negative self-talk. There’s no reason to fear failing an expectation that has nothing to do with you; becoming the best “you” doesn’t mean you’ve got to be perfect, or worry about other people’s expectations.

For a deeper look into the topic, check out today’s video.

After watching the video, share your thoughts with the community in the comments section below. How has self-talk, negative or positive, changed your life? What steps are you taking to become a more positive thinker? I’d love to hear from you.

In the wise words of Oscar Wilde, “Be yourself; everyone else is taken.”


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