How To Manage The Negative Voice In Your Head
“Hi Immik, I’ve struggled with low self esteem and this crazy voice in my head that seems to always be negative. How do I manage the negative voice in my head?”
We all are familiar with that little voice in our head telling us ‘we are not good enough.’ There are three universal fears.
- Fear of not being good enough or being found out.
- Fear of not belonging.
- Fear of not being loved.
Our ability to manage these fears is the difference between people that feel happy and content and people that run their life trying to avoid these fears, often our self talk is a very good indicator as to which one we are.
When we come in to the world as babies we do not have this voice, it comes from something we are told from an external source over time or it comes from something that we tell ourselves, as we grow and experience events we can make it means something about us, in this case, “I am not good enough.” As we have the thought over and over we create neural pathways that create a thought habit and the more we listen to it, the louder it gets.
Imagine for a second you jump in to your car and there is a song playing you don’t like, I am pretty sure you would quickly turn it down and in most cases change the station. So why don’t we do the same thing with our thinking, mainly because we don’t think we know how.
Here is the thing we are able to control our thinking BUT we need to first identify that we have the thought and work out if it is fact or fiction? When did we come up with the story, was it true or the opinion of another person, where we making a quick decision about who we were based on very loose evidence? Is it a limiting belief? Is it holding us back?
Secondly acknowledge the voice and say thanks for your contribution and trying to protect me but it is time to turn you down a bit now. When we think of the word ‘imposter’ we instantly feel vulnerable and fearful and this is how we can feel about negative self talk, we think it is part of us and because it is loud and overpowering we think we need to listen to it, but just like a toddler having a tantrum we need to acknowledge them, then leave them to sort it out. If we start to give the voice/belief less attention it will start to have less power.
An effective way to change your thought is to change your physical state. So if you are having trouble turning down the volume, move your body, do something different, take yourself somewhere you love, do something you love or speak to someone that loves and appreciates you and you will instantly change your state, which will change your feelings and your thoughts.
- Don’t subscribe to all your thoughts
- Slow down your thinking by taking deep breaths.
- Find evidence of when you were good enough – write down a list of things you do well and what you like about yourself. It can be as small as ‘I bake great cakes,’ gaining evidence to counteract the negative will help build your self esteem.
- Set yourself small goals to build up your self esteem.
- Surround yourself with raving fans.
- If feeling vulnerable limit your time on social media comparing your life to another.
- Make friends with the imposter, acknowledge the voice and shift your focus.
Got a question you want me to answer? I would love to hear from you…