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I got 89 problems and they live in my head

By 6/01/2018


a friend at dinner this week told me she'd heard on npr  (how many great dinner conversations start with 'I heard on npr?  the answer: so many) that an average of 89% of our internal monologue is negative.

i don't know if that's specifically negative self-talk, like 'you're not good enough', 'you're fat', you're less than..., you're dumb, you're guilty....  you should be ashamed....  you did this to yourself....  you don't deserve any better (clearly, i speak this language fluently).

or just negative thoughts - about your perception of others, about a situation or an experience.

i imagine it's both, but what a number right?  90% of our convos with ourself are negative.

there's this voice, living in our head, just constantly laying down the negs, and in turn, filtering our whole experience of life through nastiness.  it's no freaking wonder LIFE IS HARD.  i have like the worst friend ever that never shuts up about how nothing is right.  in my head.  i would literally never choose my head friend if were manifested in another body.  she's terrible.

so I'm trying to recognize this whole thing going on.  notice when the negative monologue is happening.  and stop it, even just for a sec, or better yet, change it every so often.  say something affirmative, something encouraging.  something caring.  something reasonable, and real and kind and based in facts.

WHO KNEW.

it's hard.  it's been part of my programming for decades - to talk down to myself.   to try so hard to get others to love me because i'm getting a big fat zero in the self-love department -- i feed my needy ego some scraps to get a little something, but caring for myself - actually developing a relationship with myself that's loving.  and healthy.  and protective.  all new.  brand freaking new.

it does work when you can interrupt the negative voice.  it just feels better.  this helps me make changes  --when you can't argue with results.  our brains just want to be pleased, and if you can prove to the brain it feels better to go easy on yourself rather than degrade yourself, it's going to start pushing for that.  and how nice, some help!  LIFE GETS BETTER.  not easier.  still hard.  but the work is more rewarding, less toiling.

wouldn't it be nice to toil less this year.  that would be something.

also found this nyt article an interesting read on the subject.  and would love to know your thoughts and experiences with this.  enjoy your weekend times!

8 comments

  1. holy shit this resonates. hard. positive self talk is so so effing hard. im working on it too, but some days it feels like YET ANOTHER thing to add to the list when you're just trying to make it through. baby steps i guess?!

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  2. I have the same bad friend in my head! She sucks. After I became a mother something unbelievable happened...she invited her even meaner twin to take up residence! I hate them both. But I liked your post. Now just have to figure out how to interrupt these two bitches every now and then. How do you do that????

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  3. Jamie,

    YES. This is everything.

    xo
    Abby

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  4. Read Eckhart Tolle's "A New Earth." He talks about that inner voice and helps you to recognize it and shut it down! Changed my life.

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  5. Social Media makes it 10X's worse. All the hate feeding off the hate leading to more hate -

    I quit FB and Twitter, and feel way better. That, music, super sweaty exercise and sex make me happier. And starting day with gratitude.

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  6. Wow. Love this, needed this. Thank you for sharing!

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  7. You are one of the kindest,loving & lovable people I have ever known! You are smart, witty & accomplished! You should be very proud of yourself! I am!

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  8. Ugh, that b*tch...hate her and can't seem to shake her. I tend to keep a ponytail holder on my wrist. I've been using it to "snap" my thoughts back into place when they drift towards the overly negative.

    I think it was originally an evolution thing that served as protection. You know, don't do that or a lion will eat you.

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