Hi. I’m Kaylynn and I’m my best frienemy.
A few weeks ago on instagram, I posted about the power of inner dialogue. I’m talking that little voice in our heads that can make us question wearing a cute strapless sundress because our arms ‘aren’t rock hard’ or that one that makes you second guess adding your idea to a lively brainstorming session even though you know it’s a smart concept. I’m also talking about the way we frame situations in our minds. You know, anticipating something (usually for the worst, just sayin’) before it even happens.
I have plenty of experience with all of these. I’m incredibly self critical. #realtalk My body image is way, waaay out of whack and, even though most of my colleagues would be probably be surprised to hear it (LOL), I’ve held back on my ideas or second guessed decisions at work because of that little voice that I let pick me apart.
The thing is, I know for a fact what we say to ourselves really does affect and shape us.
My overused example is having my youngest nearly pain-free. All just by changing my mindset about giving birth. I talk about it a lot (sorry not sorry) but it was AH-MAZ-ING, exhilarating, peaceful and full of fun banter and laughter with my husband…not what most people think of when they think of drug-free birth, right? It blew my mind.
On the flipside, I have plenty of stories about self sabotaging thoughts that have kept me from doing the things I aspire to or just simply enjoying life because I’m too busy beating myself up.
Such a waste!
So, letting my little inner critic become stronger and more convincing than my supportive, ‘you-can-have-anything-you-work-for’ inner voice is just so frustrating (and, honestly, embarrassing).
I find it easy to be the cheerleader for my friends and family. I genuinely believe in their unique purpose, power and gifts, so showering them with love and building up their self worth is effortless.
But for myself? Let’s just say sometimes it’s easier than others.
I am lucky to have incredible friends and a husband who remind me often of my talents and capabilities, so I can recognize the things my inner critic says are (mostly) B.S. But, still, I can find it tough to curb the cycle of doubting, critical self talk.
In business, we might call this being ‘too close to the problem’ to come up with a solution. That is: being too personally invested that it’s hard to see the problem from any other perspective keeping us from seeing it for what it really is and finding a solution.
Am I too close to my own ‘situation’ to see myself for who I really am? What about you? Are you too close to see your unique and powerful gifts?
Maybe we need to take a step back and really see ourselves from another perspective – the way others who know and love us do.
What if we spoke to ourselves like we would a friend freely giving them encouragement, support and righting their perspective when they needed it? What if we extended the same amount of grace to ourselves as we do our closest and most treasured friends and family?
Would we see a difference in our outlook and the experiences we have? Would we pitch the idea, wear that dress and ultimately show our kids what it’s like to live confidently in our own skin?
I’m pretty confident that we would.
So, what? What’s next?
Starting the minute this post goes lives, I’m starting a 7-day challenge to change my mindset and inner dialogue. I’m calling it the 7-day Inner Dialogue Reboot. Here are the basics.
7-Day Inner Dialogue Reboot
1) Write and send yourself an encouraging/supportive text or email at least once everyday during the challenge. Make it real. Address a challenge or topic you’re currently wrestling with. Remove yourself from ‘you’ & think about what you would say to a close friend in a similar situation.
2) Hand out (genuine) compliments like candy. 🎉🍭🍬 Research shows that giving and receiving compliments is good for your health and can even have the same positive effect as receiving cash. So, during this 7-day period, the goal is to give a minimum of one genuine compliment to someone else and at least one to yourself. As the research mentions in the articles above, being genuine is key to receiving the positive effects, sooo…no fake compliments.
Want change the way you talk to yourself too?
Join me in this 7-Day Reboot by commenting below. Two people who join will be randomly selected to win $20 gift cards from Starbucks. YAY! ☕☕☕
Image by Frank McKenna via unsplash