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What Are You Saying to Yourself? – Shawna R. B. Atteberry
Apr 092008
 

Over the last couple of months I realized how negative my self-talk is. If someone else said the things to me I was saying to me, I’d deck him or her. Or at least walk away. But for months I let my personal demons and critics beat me up over and over again. No wonder I never felt good and always thought I was sick. I was running myself into the ground and wearing myself out.

All I did was tell myself I couldn’t do whatever it was I was working on. The book proposal was never going to be finished, let alone a book written and published. My sermons sucked: all of them. Who did I think I was to plant a church? Regularly posting to my blog and drawing attention to it? A pipe dream. It’s no wonder I was depressed and had no energy. My inner critic was wearing me out.

I am slowly changing how I talk to myself. For the last couple of months, I’ve started to pay attention to what bounces around in my head. It wasn’t good. I am slowly stopping the negative thoughts in their tracks and replacing all of that negative chatter with positive affirmations:

  • I am a good writer.
  • I’ve already written a book: my graduate thesis. (The book proposal I’m working on is rewriting my thesis for the general public. That’s how Career Women of the Bible was born.)
  • I can write another book. And another book. And another….
  • I am a good pastor.
  • I am a good preacher.
  • If my sermons sucked, my PK Hubby would have said something.

When I’m working on Career Women of the Bible and I think, “This will never happen, I cut off the critic. Then I say (if I’m alone out loud): “I am a good writer, and I am going to finish this book proposal.” I’ve also set up a little group to be accountable to daily, so I do write instead of psyching myself out.

Self-talk is very important. How we talk to ourselves makes all the difference. If we don’t believe we’ll succeed, then we don’t try very hard, if at all. At one point, I’m not sure I could have seen that due to the depression. But now that is under control with antidepressants, I am able to stop, look at what I’m saying to myself, and say, “No. That’s not right. That is not who I am. This is who I am.”

What have you been saying to yourself? Is it good? Positive? Or are you running yourself into the ground? How do you deal with negative self talk? What do you say to build yourself up and live into your potential?

Click here for more posts on depression.

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  5 Responses to “What Are You Saying to Yourself?”

  1. Oh I am right there with you on the negative self talk!!! I like your list though, maybe I need to make one.

  2. btw, I always appreciate your honest, thoughtful and creative posts, keep writing, keep preaching 🙂

  3. I am there with you. A few years ago, I started waking up every morning and writing myself affirmations in my journal. Somedays, all I could write was, “I am good a writing affirmations in my journal.” But after a while, it became easier to recognize the many things I do well, brilliantly, splendidly… I think I need to start doing that again.

  4. Thank you Sally and Rachel. You really have to be intentional on being positive and grateful. And I need to answer comments is a more timely manner.

  5. […] What Are You Saying to Yourself? Another Jouney with Depression Fogs of Depression Depression and Spiritual Direction Sphere: Related Content […]

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