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Negative Self-Talk

By Trish Briggs

According to scientists, the average person has 50,000 to 70,000 thoughts a day, of those 40,000 to 56,000 are negative. According to Dr. Deppak Chopra, 95% of these thoughts are the same day after day.

When I first read this, I was astounded at the large number of negative thoughts the average person has per day. I reflected on this statement. I questioned if I was having this many negative thoughts. If I was, I was not aware of them. I started to listen mindfully to my internal dialogue to decide. Really, I opened my mind to the possibility!

Despite being the person who could always find the positive in the negative, I realized that when I truly listened, I was having negative and demeaning thoughts. My positive outlook had no correlation with the negative self-talk. If anything, my outlook hid the negative dialogue from my conscious awareness. It felt like there was tape running in the background playing over and over. I felt a degree removed from the negative thoughts but at the same time I could see them affecting me. I would especially notice it when I was not feeling centered or tired and ill. Those would be the moments when I would consciously internalize what I was hearing.

Upon reflection and more research on the topic, I came to realize that most of this internal negative dialogue that I could now hear was not coming from my conscious mind. It was automatic like a recorder playing in the background. They were originating from my subconscious and unconscious mind. Even though I felt removed from most of the negative thoughts, I had to own them because they were inside of me. They were mine even if they did not align with who I consciously believed myself to be and how I felt about myself in the present moment.

I also understood that this internal negative dialogue was undermining my desire to work towards self-love and sense of worthiness. This internal negative dialogue reflected a way of thinking, a habit, and had evolved from my belief systems. Some of the beliefs were inherited from previous generations and buried deep. From a healing perspective, beliefs are energy, and they either serve us or hinder us. What serves us today, may hinder us tomorrow as our self-awareness evolves. I knew this. So clearly, the beliefs that lead to this negative self-talk no longer serve the me-now that wants to embody self-love.

I switched my mindset (silver lining)! This cesspool of negative dialogue became my goldmine. It was full of information that I could use for my benefit. Every negative thought that was out of alignment with the me-now could be traced back to a belief that either needed adjusted or released.

I began peeling back my onion of negative self-talk to reveal its source(s). Today, the chatter in the background is much quieter. I can’t say that it is completely gone because I am continuously evolving and my beliefs shift. However, I can say that I have more self-awareness and when a negative thought pops in, I can usually catch it in the moment, and deal with it before it starts its eternal looping.

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