Author: Mary Kate Murphy
Have you ever considered that how you think and speak about your body is just as important as what you do with it? Maybe that was a mind blowing question right there. That’s ok — it takes a minute or two to digest that concept.
Ready? Ok, now let’s continue…
Our thoughts are so powerful. Studies show that people who experienced frequent, negative thoughts about themselves, have higher rates of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity-related conditions. And while this doesn’t mean negative thoughts cause these conditions, it’s widely agreed that our mental health has a big impact on our physical health.
The good news is, while we can’t always control how others perceive us, we can control how we perceive and speak to ourselves. Reframing negative self-talk into positive self-talk can help set you up for success and help you reach your goals.
Here’s how to use positive self-talk to your advantage:
- Awareness before anything else: Take an inventory of your thoughts. You have a thought about yourself during the day, write it down and categorize your thoughts into positive and negative columns. What do you notice at the end of the day? This will be an eye opening exercise and one we all learn from because it shows us where we can work on our self-talk in regards to our health and wellness journeys.
- Interrupt patterns: When we break our patterns, we get different results. If you recognize that you have the pattern of talking negatively to yourself in regards to food and your choices, then perhaps it’s time you start doing the opposite of that behavior. For example, before you may have said, “It’s so hard to lose this weight. I’ve tried so many different diets and none have worked. What’s the use?” Now let’s pattern interrupt this negative self-talk and turn it into something more effective, “I am enjoying the process of losing weight and discovering new tasty foods. I am transitioning to making healthy, sustainable habits that will serve me for the long haul.”
- Change your perspective: Instead of getting down and focusing on the slip up we may have had, we get to recognize all the good that we’re doing and the healthy choices we’re going to make tomorrow! What progress have you seen so far in your weight loss journey?
- Resist the urge to spiral: Don’t let one slip up turn into consecutive negative thoughts. For example, “I ate the entire pizza. I’ll never be able to lose weight.” That thinking sets us up for falling victim to the “throw in the towel” mindset and that’s not what we’re going to do! It’s so important to leave it at that and adjust the plan for next time. Next time you order pizza, what will you do differently? One strategy could be ordering a smaller size and having a salad before you eat it. Readjust and plan for the next time!
- Manifest with a mantra: What is a positive phrase you get to tell yourself everyday? One example is, “I am a healthy, thriving person that only has positive things to say about myself!” Mantras have been used to help improve self-esteem and the more we hear ourselves speak positively about ourselves, the more we actually will!
We all have negative self-chatter going on in our heads, but we can also decide how much we allow it to stay. Speak kindly to yourself and enjoy the benefits of improved health and self-esteem.
Share in the comment section with us a positive mantra you can “try on” today!
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