Last Updated on October 4, 2022 by Stephanie
I started this whole blog because I am surrounded by awesome people in my life. The worst part about that is that they don’t even realize it. The self-talk we do in our minds tells us otherwise. If you’re looking for a self-talk definition, you can find numerous. They all center around the same idea. Basically, it is how we are internally talking to ourselves in situations. Anyone who really knows me understands that I am not one for the fluffy stuff. Far from it. So this isn’t just lip service. My wish is that this post inspires you, and you truly believe everything that I’m telling you. My hope is that you act after reading this because you absolutely deserve it.
If you’ve been around the blog and read my post about my why and asking hard questions to set your goals, you know that I went through some of the same crazy crap that all of you went through during 2020 and the years following. Dealing with all of that and seeing several people in my life and who they truly were, wow. The first thing I realized is that I surrounded myself with a group of amazing people. I am damn good at picking the people in my life.
Fast forward to deciding to start this blog and all that surrounded that idea. It was all because I saw all these awesome people around me and realized that not a single one of them truly understood how awesome they were. Keep reading as I talk about the following five truths I wish everyone knew about themselves.
- You are so much more capable than you believe.
- There are ideas inside you begging to come out.
- You are a life-long learner.
- We are all addicted to something and it’s holding us back.
- You are your worst, harshest, meanest friend.
My Favorite Example of Awesome – My FitFam
I’ll give you the example of my best friend group, my CrossFit gals. We have an AMAZING gym community at CrossFit Thunderbolt and the women who have become a huge part of my life are such a wide range of individuals. We’ve got quite the age range between all of us, a million different jobs, different kid situations, different relationship statuses, and very different personalities. They’re all freaking awesome though.
The way they talk about themselves though… you would think that they were just your average person. No, they are NOT AVERAGE. I have a friend who can deadlift over 300 lbs., but she gets in her head that she can’t do awesome CrossFit stuff all the time – even while doing awesome CrossFit stuff. I have another who is unbelievably talented with art and every craft she tries, but she questions her talents and her business all the time. There’s another who just had a 2nd baby and doubts her parenting every day (haven’t we all been there). Another has these amazing shoulders (seriously… we joke about it all the time… she probably secretly hates all of us on the regular) that we comment on, but she humbly smiles when you tell her she’s a badass.
I think that we are all so critical of ourselves and we’ve been told so many times to be average that we either honestly don’t believe we have done something awesome or we are hiding how truly excited we are. Either way, let’s be honest about our self-talk.
Truth 1 – You Are So Much More Capable Than You Believe
Marathons, CrossFit, and Motherhood… in that order. Those are the things that I go back to in my mind when I’m doubting my abilities. I put them in that order because I ran my first marathon of 4 in 2008, started CrossFit in 2015, and became a mom in 2019.
When I first toyed with the idea of running a marathon it was a friend who convinced me to do so. 26.2 miles through downtown Chicago in early Fall. I signed up and started training. Oddly enough that same friend found out she was pregnant with her first kiddo right when we got into training, so she ended up only running six miles of that first marathon with me. It was hard. It was lonely 17-mile training runs with only my thoughts and my music. I found others to run short distances with me to keep things interesting, but it was really all me.
After running so much solo, I wanted to do something different. Enter CrossFit. I had heard about CrossFit in passing several times, saw a gym while driving home one day, walked in to see what it was all about, and drank the “kool-aid.” Since then, I’ve laughed, cried, sweat, thrown up, and peed my pants… all at CrossFit Thunderbolt. I did not ever think that I could be this strong. CrossFit is the epitome of learning how to have encouraging self-talk because you won’t get through some of the workouts without it!
Perhaps my biggest test was giving birth to my Lexi girl. Becoming a parent is a crap shoot. Like seriously… you have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA how any of this is going to go. It is the wildest ride of all time, and holy crap is it fun. Parenting is also a HUGE self-talk situation because let’s be honest… you are questioning every little thing you are doing with that small human!
Now, take a moment to think about the hard things you’ve done in your life. Your hard things might look different from mine, and that is absolutely okay. What have you overcome? What have you had to persevere through?
You have already done hard things in your life. You have. I can guarantee it. Stop telling yourself that you can’t do something or that something is probably not in the cards.
You can do hard things.
Truth 2 – There Are Ideas Inside You Begging to Come Out
Here’s the deal folks. I may hit it big one day with this blog. Millions could be knocking at my door in a few years. Or, I may still be in my classroom in the Chicago suburbs in a few years still blogging about my thoughts on life and getting by just fine.
Don’t stop yourself from sharing your ideas or doing the things you want to do.
Even if you think it is too small to make a difference. Do it. If you think it is too big of a chance or couldn’t possibly work. Do it. Who cares?
When you think of the great minds that we know of, think about how crazy people thought they were! People flying? Yeah right. Video phone calls… sure. Imagine the self-talk happening in all of those moments! I’m sure there was doubt and fear, but amazing outcomes don’t come from talking yourself OUT of something. Now, I’m not saying that you need to be an entrepreneur but act on your ideas.
If you want to go on that European cruise, start making plans. When you have that new product idea, go for it. You want to go on some wild and crazy date night with your husband, woohoo!
We all look crazy/unrealistic/silly/etc. multiple times in our lives. Learn to embrace it and let your thoughts out into the world.
Truth 3 – You Are a Life-Long Learner
I love that term because I’m a teacher. Being a life-long learner is essential. You do NOT know everything. There is no one in the world that does. I just finish reading Tiago Forte’s book Building a Second Brain and he talks about Nobel-Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman when talking about capturing and consuming information.
Feynman’s reach was quite wide and many questioned how he could do so many amazing things. In an interview, he revealed that he kept about a dozen problems present in his mind. He was talking about huge world-changing problems. As he took in information, he would think to himself if it would help any of those problems he had mulling around. Now that is a way to use self-talk to get things done!
What a unique idea! What would your problems be? When you think about this, think about things you’ve always been interested in. Think about things that have always bothered you. They don’t have to be related to your current field of work. They don’t have to be related to anything really.
Your brain LOVES searching for patterns and things that interest you, so why not give in every once in a while? Instead of sitting down for a round of Facebook posts, go to the library or seek out an article that circles around one of your problems. Educate yourself!
Truth 4- We Are All Addicted to Something and it is Holding Us Back
This is a hard truth, and I can tell you right now that I am absolutely guilty of this. I am aware of this in my life. Since I’m aware, I’m also really making an effort to combat this. So, I speak this truth and know that I myself struggle with this on the daily. To be totally honest here, there is NO JUDGEMENT happening from me to you. I am just as guilty of this as everyone else.
What is this addiction I’m speaking of? I’m betting that you might already know. You might not be willing to say that it holds you back from anything. Here are the two things that are most common… television and our phones. Yup. I said it.
I’m not going to go into the science of it, but there are plenty of statistics to back this up. With the pandemic especially, our smartphone use is absolutely insane. I am absolutely guilty of this. Think about television as well. How often do you sit in front of the television to give yourself a “break” only to find yourself a few hours later having watched a million episodes of something and having gotten nothing done all day.
Personal Connection – My own usage!
This weekend, on Sunday I spent a cumulative of 6 hours and 43 minutes on my phone. One hour of that was me filming my weekly review for Instagram, but still… that’s almost 6 hours of screen time. Over an hour of that was me playing a stupid game that I downloaded over a year ago and still play. I’m showing you screenshots of my actual phone because I am being completely honest with you.
Why the crap don’t I get stuff done? It’s because I’m playing a game on my phone! Or I’m looking at Facebook or Instagram or YouTube. Guys… let’s admit it to ourselves and start being better about our devices and the television. They are not a break… We self-talk ourselves into believing that we are watching TV and scrolling through Facebook to give ourselves a break at the end of a long day. Let’s be honest… they are a distraction from the crap we need to be doing instead. Our minds could be better served to do something else.
The Last Truth – You Are Your Worst, Harshest, Meanest Friend
You absolutely are terrible to yourself when you really think about it. I highly recommend the book UnFu*k Yourself by Gary John Bishop. He really lays it out there about how negative we are to our own selves. His way of describing the self-talk we use every day is so down-to-earth and real, and I thoroughly enjoyed it! If you really want a treat, you should check out the audiobook because he is Scottish, and listening to him yell at you in an accent is amazing.
Here’s the truth though… we hold ourselves back. We might think that it is a grounded and real reason for not doing something, but if you were to really examine some of your motives behind inaction it is all you. Why do we do this to ourselves? Honestly, I don’t know. Recognizing it though is half the battle. This article from Mayo Clinic talks about shifting to positive thinking and how you can identify hidden negative self-talk.
Final Thoughts and Challenges
So this may not have been something you were looking to read today. If I got you all the way to here, maybe it was something you needed to read today. I am not a doctor, a psychiatrist, or a psychologist. I do not claim to be an expert in the field of self-talk. I’m a friend, a wife, a mom, a teacher, a woman, and a human. I’m other things too, but those are my main identities.
My purpose here at Creating Time for Life is really to help people realize how awesome they are and help them plan their days and their futures.
I literally write that down every single day in my goals.
This was one of those posts that have been in the back of my mind for quite some time. My own self-talk was telling me to not post it. “No one cares. They aren’t going to read it. What’s the point of you posting this? Why are you doing this blog thing anyway?”
I’m glad I finally wrote it. It helped me process my own thoughts and actions. I hope it did the same for you.
Now, here are your next actions:
- Make a don’t list. (writing down things you don’t want to do in the day-to-day)
- If someone gives you a compliment, take it in. Don’t brush it off… instead, talk about the work you put into what they are complimenting. (If they think you are braggy because of this… they suck… don’t be their friend. j/k… maybe)
- Acknowledge yourself by writing down something you accomplished today that was difficult.
- Get off your butt and do something you say you want to do. Don’t pick up your phone to scroll or watch TV to rest… grab a book you’ve been wanting to read, go take a hot bath, go write in your journal. Do something that isn’t mindless.
Now, go off into the world and do extraordinary things!