Very often, when we’re driving in the car together, my daughter will suddenly ask, “Who are you talking to?” She does this because she can tell I’m having a conversation in my head because I’m making hand gestures with my right hand as it’s resting on the gear shift. I talk to myself a lot, and not just because it’s some of the most intelligent conversation I get in a given day (ha ha).
There’s actually a lot of benefits to talking to yourself. According to a recent article in Psychology today, “Talking to yourself may make you smarter. It helps you clarify your thoughts, tend to what’s important and firm up any decisions you’re contemplating.” I find that when I talk to myself about an upcoming client meeting, it becomes a great dress rehearsal for the actual conversation. When I mentally walk through my options when I’m problem solving, I find I can make better decisions more quickly.
So don’t let anyone tell you that you’re crazy if you talk to yourself. When you talk to yourself, you’re talking to the person who knows you best and has your best interests at heart.
Finally, one tip to make self talk more effective – be sure you speak POSITIVELY to and about yourself. Negative self talk is worse than no self talk!
Starting today, have regular conversations with the person who knows you best. . .YOU! Give yourself a pep talk or a compliment, don’t wait for others to do it for you. They’re too focused on their own “stuff”. Rehearse an important or difficult conversation. Debate both sides of the issue if you’re trying to make an important decision. Talk through a complaint you want to share with another person, so you can craft your comments to be respectful, positive, and assertive.
Finally, a bonus tip: you can take the benefits of self talk even further if you talk to yourself out loud! Hearing your own words out loud will help you focus them to be more effective!