Friday, 23 June 2017

Teens - Change Your Self-Talk and Change Your Life

Like all of us, you have a steady conversation with yourself. This is what you are thinking and telling yourself. These messages are called self-talk and research indicates that the average person has about 500, 000 thoughts each day!

A branch of psychology called Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) maintains that how you think largely determines how you feel and behave. Your thoughts or self-talk could be positive or negative. Positive self-talk could lead to positive feelings and actions. On the hand, negative self-talk  could lead to negative emotions and behaviors/



Self-talk affects every aspect of your life. In the TEDTalks, Dr. Valerie Mason-John, explains that we are what we think.

She shares her own story of how the negative thoughts in her head that told her that she was worthless led to self-defeating feelings and behaviors throughout her teen and into adulthood.
She explains that when she stopped listening to the negative chatter, she started to  hear, "I am beautiful" and "I am unique." She has since made it a habit to tell herself positive statements like these every day, and her life changed.



Develop Positive Affirmations

Daily positive affirmation can change your self-talk. Practice empowering self-talk that can help you through difficult times. Carol Vivyan, in An Introductory Self-Help Course in Cognitive Behavior Therapy, lists several positive affirmations that you can use to develop a new attitude about yourself and situations.
Vivyan explains that these statements should be broadly realistic, even if you don't believe them right now. Such affirmations include:
  • My life has meaning and purpose.
  • I am determined and successful.
  • I accept myself as a unique and worthwhile person.
  • I have set goals and I am moving towards them.
  • I live a healthy and positive lifestyle.
As you make these affirmations several times a day, your thought patterns could change. Then you become empowered to make use of new opportunities and experiences that lead to a more purposeful life.
Here are six ways positive self-talk can enhance your well-being:

1. Boost Your Self-Esteem 

Positive self-talk leads to healthy self-esteem. Your self-esteem is the picture you have of yourself and whether you like that picture. How you think about yourself affects how you feel about yourself, so your self-talk affects your self-esteem, confidence, and well-being.

2. Improve Your Mood

You could find that your mood shifts depending on what you are thinking. For example, if your self-talk focuses on your weaknesses, you could experience feelings of sadness. On the other hand, repeated positive affirmations about yourself could boost your confidence about your abilities.

3. Enhance Your Health

Positive self-talk leads to a positive outlook on life, and research shows that being optimistic can have a positive effect on your health. According to the Mayo Clinic these health benefits include lower rates of depression and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.

4. Build Positive Relationships

Improving your self-talk can help you to develop and maintain strong relationships. Healthy relationships lead to a sense of belonging and connectedness which bring purpose and meaning to your life.

5. Release an Attitude of Gratitude

When you acknowledge the good aspects of your life, then you express thankfulness for them. Research shows that people who cultivate this grateful attitude have fewer physical complaints and sleep better.

6. Develop Resiliency 

Youth is a special season of change and growth. Positive self-talk increases your ability to adapt to such changes. Positive self-talk helps to broaden your perspective and inspire emotional resilience in challenging times.

Helpful Resource for Teens:


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