Work inspiration

Soothing words for crummy self-talk

- August 21, 2020 2 MIN READ

It’s not perfect. I’m not ready. I always do this. People will think… These unhelpful statements can become way too familiar and can significantly influence your actions, happiness and future. Here are four crummy statements that don’t help. Replaced with soothing words that do.

  1. It’s not perfect.

I’m sure it’s not. Nothing is. And what you think is ‘perfect’ today, someone else won’t and your future self might disagree too. Doing a great job is important and satisfying, as is developing your skills and knowledge. But… seeking ‘perfection’ won’t get it done without big emotional and time costs (if at all). Do a great job, finish, and celebrate your contribution. Savour the satisfaction of completion and the space you’ve created to invest your time elsewhere.

  1. I always do this.

“I always say the wrong thing…” “I always make the wrong choice…” Do your really always do this? No doubt you’re human and flawed, just like everyone else, but it’s worth challenging this extreme way of talking to yourself. If you are doing some things more than you’d like, or not doing others enough, maybe it’s time to gently address this. For example, by working on self-awareness and developing better decision making skills. 

  1. I’m not ready.

There are some things that are so important to you you’ll practice and prepare to the best of your ability. But, you still mightn’t feel ‘ready.’ Accept this and keep moving. Try and replace “I’m not ready yet” with “Let’s do this!” (even if your voice wobbles a bit). Then launch, try, show up. If things don’t go as you’d hoped, or you make a mistake, you’ll still gain experience and knowledge and build confidence and resilience. These are big rewards in themselves that will help you feel more ready next time.

  1. People will think…

Maybe you’ve started a small business; decided to end a relationship; or accepted a less senior role. When you make a big life change, you might imagine what people will say – whether they’ll approve or not. Keep your why close and preserve your energy for what you know to be true and for pursuing what’s important to you. And stay connected to the people who encourage and support you. For a confidence boost, remind yourself of big, courageous moves you’ve made in the past. Also – an oldy but a goody – people are much more focussed on their own lives and have little space left to muse about you (especially in the always-occupied modern world). 

When unhelpful self-talk pops up, try to pause and re-word the thought by asking yourself – What would I say to a friend who said this? Then use your kind, excellent words to encourage, comfort and support yourself. (You might even feel your body relax.) Being compassionate to yourself will help you move forward more swiftly so you can focus on your important goals and the people you care for. 

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  • Andrew Caska

    Caska IP Patent Attorneys

    'Flying Solo opened up so many doors for us - I honestly don't know where I'd be without it"