Inner Dialogue

Conversing With Ourselves: The Power of Inner Dialogue

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Ever notice how sometimes you’re absolutely sure you can do something, but your confidence wavers when you actually have to do it? Or have you noticed that you might have an inner voice telling you what to do, but it doesn’t match with the actions you take? If so, then you know that our internal dialogue has power over us. However, there are many things we can do to change this relationship and start using our inner dialogue to our advantage. Read on to learn more about what inner dialogue is and how it can improve your life!

How We Talk To Ourselves

Have you ever noticed how our thoughts can influence our mood? In his book Self-Talk, psychologist Shad Helmstetter describes inner dialogue as verbal behaviors used for thinking about and evaluating ourselves, others, and events. These self-statements go way beyond what’s going on in our heads—they actually affect our entire body. The research suggests that by consciously choosing to use self-talk that is helpful and constructive, we have more control over every aspect of our lives.

Conversing With Ourselves: The Power of Inner Dialogue

If a situation isn’t going well, it’s time to make some adjustments. To try this out, imagine you are heading into a meeting where things don’t go the way you planned. You can either tell yourself Wow, I really blew it at this meeting! My boss will be so mad at me! or I might not have done a great job at this meeting but I did my best and learned from the experience.

After having said these two sentences aloud, take a few deep breaths and notice how your emotions change. What happened when you chose to speak words of encouragement instead of negativity?

Conversing With Ourselves: The Power of Inner Dialogue
Speak words of encouragement instead of negativity

Positive words help us feel confident, brave, strong, intelligent, courageous—you name it!

We Do It All Day Long

We talk to ourselves. Whether we’re thinking out loud, commenting on our actions, or just entertaining some random idea that popped into our heads; we’re engaging in self-talk. This form of conversation is such a natural part of our lives, that it can be easy to overlook how impactful it can be.

But research shows that inner dialogue can play a powerful role in everything from decision making to stress management—as well as influencing how others perceive us! Here are five interesting things about inner dialogue.

  • A study by Stanford University found that subjects who had been instructed to think aloud during problem-solving sessions were more successful at finding solutions than those who weren’t required to verbally describe their thoughts.

  • Research also suggests that people may even act differently based on the tone of their own voice in their head. In one experiment, participants were asked to speak normally and then slowly while reading an essay aloud. When they repeated the essay in a slow monotone voice inside their heads, they judged themselves less harshly and acted more confidently than when they read the same passage normally.

  • For many people, silent conversations serve as an important tool for regulating emotions like anxiety and depression. One study showed that regular self-dialoguers experienced fewer negative emotions and felt closer to themselves than non-self dialoguers did. If you’ve ever talked back to your inner critic, chances are you know what this feels like.

  • Another study revealed that introverts actually need more time to themselves than extroverts do in order to recharge.
Conversing With Ourselves: The Power of Inner Dialogue
  • Our ability to engage in productive self-dialogue is diminished when our minds go blank. So if you find yourself struggling with writer’s block, try starting off your writing session by consciously saying something to yourself (I will now write…) and see where it takes you.

Why You Should Care

According to Scott Adams, author of How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big, humans have two selves—the conscious self and our unconscious mind. While we like to pretend that our conscious self is in charge, it really isn’t. In fact, studies show that up to 90 percent of your actions are taken by your unconscious mind without you realizing it.

Even though the thoughts come from our unconscious minds, they’re often based on what we believe or what we think other people think about us. And because these thoughts come from our inner dialogue, this has a profound effect on how we see ourselves and how others see us as well.

So while you may feel like the captain of your ship when it comes to your life decisions, there is a lot going on inside that you don’t know about or can’t control.

How To Use Inner Dialogue In Your Life

You can use inner dialogue to help you with decision-making, problem-solving, and even improving your health.

Achieving success in life can be a challenge for many people. When faced with adversity or challenging situations, most people respond by turning to someone else for advice or guidance on how to deal with it. However, in today’s fast-paced world, time is precious and we have little extra time available to go running off to talk things over with someone else when we need answers right away. The good news is that each one of us has the ability to turn inward and access our own wisdom from within.

With practice, anyone can learn how to use their thoughts as an adviser who will answer any question they pose – no matter what that question may be!

Want to learn more about taking good care of your inner child, get my favorite book Self Parenting: The Complete Guide to Your Inner Conversations, from Amazon.

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