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Confessions of a Negative Self Talker

You clearly don’t have what it takes, so stop trying so hard. Do you REALLY think it’s going to pay off? Think of all the hard-working people out there that fail. What makes you think you aren’t going to be one of them? Face it. You aren’t good enough.

Pretty brutal self talk there, ey?

I’m not proud to say this, but that’s a direct quote from my inner monologue some days.

Yes, me! Ms. Stay Positive, Live Your Dreams, Just F*cking Do It!, Mad to Live.

I’m a regular, old Debbie Downer every once in awhile.

I’ve always had a problem with being a little too hard on myself, even if the signs are looking up and I’m doing great.

Over the past few weeks I’ve gotten thank you emails, “You Rock!” twitter DMs, was listed on people’s favorite blogs here and here and here (Thanks you guys!), and even brought in some web design business for an awesome guy here. I am so grateful for all of this.

Yet I still give myself shit far too often, rarely patting myself on the back for doing good work I’m proud of.

For me, there is always more to do, more I could have done, and more I wish I hadn’t done.

Now, I’m not telling you this for pity or anything like that. But I’m sharing this because I think that there are too many people out there working their butts off and putting out amazing work, yet at the end of the day they beat themselves up.

As I said, I’m guilty as charged. But I thought, it’s worth it to share it because it always helps to feel you’re not alone when you’re being unfairly unfair to yourself.

THE INNER SPEECH IN OUR HEADS

Published author Ralph Charrell, who one inspired us with one of my favorite quotes, “Nobody succeeds beyond his or her wildest expectations unless he or she begins with some wild expectations”, also told us, “The inner speech, your thoughts, can cause you to be rich or poor, loved or unloved, happy or unhappy, attractive or unattractive, powerful or weak”.

It’s pretty ridiculous that we can come so far, accomplish so much, and inspire so many, yet at the end of the day, our inner voice has something bad to say about it.

It’s like that nagging girlfriend or boyfriend that even finds something to whine about on a free, all-expenses-paid trip to the “Happiest Place on Earth”, Disney World!

What a pain in the ass! Don’t you wish you could just tell them to “Shut the F*CK up”?!

TELLING YOUR NEGATIVE SELF TALK TO SHUT UP

Today I woke up and I realized that letting myself think like this is the stupidest thing I could ever possibly do short of going skydiving without a chute or attempting to chug a gallon of milk to impress people or belching the A,B,C’s. (Okay there are a lot of stupid things I could also do.)

This morning I realized that there are so many better things to focus on that automatically get your negative self talk to shut up.

What about gratitude? By simply spending time thinking about all the amazing things you’ve been given, you’ve seen, and you’ve done, your negative self talk shuts up.

What about FUN? The second you remember that you’re doing all this because you love it and it makes you feel alive, your negative self talk shuts up.

What about inspiration? When you start to think about how the people you’ve met throughout your journey have inspired you so much and how you’ve inspired people along the way as well, your negative self talk shuts up.

What about YOU? When you start to give yourself credit for all the things you’ve done and all the things you deserve, your negative self talk shuts up. And if you need a reminder, pull out your Mad To Do List and look at all the amazing things you’ve checked off.

BE POSITIVE.

The mind is a beautiful and complicated place. Don’t let it play tricks on you. For it’s the very thing that’s gotten you to the far and wide, inspiring, move-making places you’ve reached today and are heading towards tomorrow.

Don’t tear yourself down when you deserve to be looking up. You’re much sexier, much more accomplished, and much more amazing than you could ever imagine. From one negative self talker to another, trust me on that one.

What Have You Rocked On?
If you’ve been giving yourself too much crap lately, prove yourself wrong and share in the comments what things have you been rocking on and having a blast with lately.   I reply to each comment with love and thought and nothing is cooler than the discussion that get’s going from you guys, so don’t forget to Subscribe to the Comments!

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About Lauren Rains

Hi my name is Lauren Rains. I write about the human experience. Through thick and thin, I’m dedicated to growth, adventure, integrity, and love. The Mad To Live is based on my pursuits, experiments, research, and lessons of challenge and triumph in all areas of life, including being entrepreneur, a writer, a philosopher, a traveler, a teacher, a student, a creative, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a significant other, a stranger and the list goes on. At the end of the day, I believe human beings are here for two reasons: 1.) to love one another with total acceptance, and 2.) to see what we’re made of as we create the possibilities for an abundant life for ourselves and for others. No more bullshit, let's just enjoy our lives.

Share with me what you're getting into that matters to you. It could be stepping into entrepreneurial pursuits, embarking on a journey of the self, making a crazy life change, or even if you're totally stuck. I want to connect with, support, collaborate with, and learn from as many people as possible through this blog (that means you!) Click the *Share* link in the main menu and let's connect by filling out the form.

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  • Hey Lauren — I now feel like you’re two people… so L1 and L2

    To L1 — just keep cranking up the volume. You’re loaded with the chops and the talent to whatever it is you want to do in this life — and it will most certainly include enriching lives and leaving an incredible mark in the world. FOCUS on this.

    L2 — shut the f%$@k up!

    Cheers Lauren : )

    • Hey Mark!

      L1 ROCKS! I like her!
      L2 … LAMMMEEE!!!!

      L1 is the one normally around. But when L2 comes along, I won’t hesitate to use the F-bomb to get her out of there. 😛

      Thanks for the kind words Mark!
      LAUREN 🙂

  • Hi Lauren!

    Oh wow. Glad to know that we’re not the only ones to feel that way. Sometimes it’s something we can’t help. Especially when other people resonate their displeasure at your choices or when there aren’t any tangible results to remind you of your accomplishments.

    Thank you for the advice Lauren. We truly appreciate it and will start practising shouting “shut the F*&k up!” the next time a self depreciating thought comes into our head. 🙂

    Now, who would EVER complain about going to DisneyWorld? Pfffft! How rude!

    Oh and btw, would you mind if we were to backlink you to one of our blogposts please? Thank you!

    Tariq and Shaheera

    • Hey Tariq & Shaheera!

      haha yea sometimes we just need to throw the F-Bomb at ourselves and Get A Grip!!! 🙂
      I think sometimes the hardest part when there aren’t any tangible results to remind you of your accomplishments. This especially goes for when we’re in the process of creating those tangible results. Say, the time period between one quites their job to start their own business. There’s that gap before that business starting bringing in clients or turning in revenue, and so during that gap all we have is our minds. And our mine can pump us up and make is GO and make it happen, but it can also tear us down.
      Our mind can be a real prick sometimes, ya know? haha

      Anyway, OF COURSE you can backlink to me. Thank you so much!

      Talk to you two soon! Stay positive! Must better to be like the 10 year old whose visiting Disney for the 1st time than that nagging gf/bf haha.
      Thanks Tariq & Shaheera!
      LAUREN

      • Thanks Lauren!

        Yup just backlinked you in our article about amplifying negativity. 🙂

        Love your enthusiasm and looking forward to hearing more from you!

        Tariq and Shaheera

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  • Awesome post! I’m so glad self-love month at Positively Present inspired you. Keep thinking positively!

    • When I got the email on Jan 31st that Feb was going to be Self-Love month I thought to myself, “You know what, this is exactly what I need.” Sometimes you gotta make an extra point to bear hug yourself sometimes. 🙂
      Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Hi Lauren, first time on your site (saw Mark’s review) today and love what you’re talking girl 😉 You write from the heart, and you’re real, which is pretty much a requisite for me these days when reading a new post. Like you, my self talk is its own little roller coaster. Some days I’m climbing the hill, other days I’m flying down it, but the main thing is that I see myself getting better and better at eliminating the negative talk (and other stuff) from my life.

    Keep up the wonderful work here. I’ve subscribed and look forward to watching you grow.

    Marcus

    • Hey Marcus!
      Well welcome to The Mad To Live! It is great to have you here. Mark is an awesome guy isn’t he? I’m so glad to have connect with him.
      And now you 🙂 Thank you so much for the kind words.

      I too have slowly but surely been eliminating the negative talk, and other negative stuff for that matter, from my life. The other day I finally paid attention to the way I was talking to myself, and it really hit me. Before that it was more like a bad habit I didn’t realize I was doing like biting my nails. But now I hear it. now I pay attention to it. And because of that, I’ve suddenly been able to tell myself to shut the hell up when I need too haha.
      Thanks for sharing Marcus!
      LAUREN 🙂

      • Lauren, Marcus — a BIG thumbs up to both of you — you are both amazing people thanks for being part of my journey : )

        You should pop over to the Lions blog Lauren – – you’ll be inspired : )

  • Lauren

    hey laurrrr,
    first time on your site, and I’m in lurveee with your writing already girl. Working on that voice in your head, the negative self talk is always a work-in-progress, but once you are aware of it that’s half the battle! Keep it real.

    • Hey Lauren!
      Nice name haha.
      And you are so right. Half the battle is becoming aware of it. Once you truly start paying attention to the way you’re talking to yourself, it becomes a lot easier to also say to yourself, “Wow. I’m being a total b*tch to myself right now”. And then after that you simply consciously decide to think about something else 🙂
      Thanks for coming by my site Lauren! It is great to have you hear and I hope to hear more from you as well!
      – LAUR

  • Thanks for sharing this – it’s gutsy. Or as we’ve talked about before, vulnerable. Or, you’re just getting naked. Hells ya!

    But the reason I like this is because it’s exactly what goes on in my head too often than I would like. I supposed because it’s we have such high standards for ourselves. We want to achieve the highest of highs, live remarkables lives, and push aside anyone who tells us we can’t. Yet along the journey to the top, there’s out minds telling us we should be marching farther, faster, and with more fervor. It’s SO EASY to say that we should be doing more. Heck, I often compare myself to Richard Branson!

    There’s something about always looking forward and to the best that makes us feel feeble in comparison. Yet something I rarely do is compare myself to people who haven’t done what I’ve done. And in reality, for the both of us, there’s a lot of people who just simply haven’t lived life as much as us. And if we take that perspective, we can see that, “Hey, we ARE kicking ass and taking names!”

    I remember one time in the late summer. I went to the ocean to watch the sunrise and for some odd reason my mind was simply quiet. And in this quiet was a deep, intense feeling of pleasure. With myself and my accomplishments. I sat on a bench and a smile overcame my face. I couldn’t help it!

    I want more of those moments in life.

    Thanks for all the great posts, Lauren!

    • Hey Collin!
      haha woo hoo naked! Sometimes we gotta metaphorically streak when we write blog posts, ya know? 😛

      Haha I so relate to you! I’m on the same level. I often look up to the people that inspire me and help me to dream big, but I also compare myself to them in a nonproductive way. I see their BIG accomplishments and BIG ideas and BIG support, and I sometimes think, “Man Lauren. YOu just kind of screwed up on this. How are you going to get up there with them?”
      Which is stupid! Because they are our mentors to inspire us! We should never let our mentors morph in our minds to become the ones that intimidate us.

      Furthermore, I completely agree. I always forget there are so many people around me that are settling for less and taking the easier route. We on the other hand are putting ourseleves out there, taking a risk, and essentially putting all our faith in just how badass we think we can be.

      I love your memory of going to the beach for sunrise. I live for moments like that. They just feel, right, ya know?

      Thanks for sharing Collin! I’m so glad to have met you! (electronically for now haha)

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  • Jossie

    Been proud of myself about doing Habitat for Humanity, Feeding the Homeless, and about to embark on a brand new project that will help the city of Jax to (hopefully) become a greener city.

    To my negative side I have to say “shut up, don’t start that with me today!” and sure enough, she listens, I’m surprised how obedient she can be 🙂

    • Hey Jossie!
      Oh wow what are you doing for the city of Jax?! I’d love to help out and be a part of that! That’s fantastic you did work with Habitat for Humanity. I’ve always wanted to work with them. And you know what? Thank you for reminding me. I’ll make it a point to see if there are any sites near me I could work on coming up!

      It’s pretty amazing that if we actually pay attention to what we say to ourselves that we can actually control it! At first it seems overwhelming, but once we learn to talk to it, then it always listens. 🙂

  • Hey Lauren, thanks for the post! Had to kick myself in gear the past couple of days and it’s comforting to know that negative self talk doesn’t only happen in my head.

    There’s always someone better, faster, stronger, better-looking, smarter, etc. but when it come down to it who gives a sh*t? You’ve got to be you and be happy with that!

    As a juggler and someone who wants to create an income from my passion (by busking) I see tons of videos of people who are SO much better than me but the reality is that no one has ever watched me juggle and said that I sucked….I’m the only one who says that to myself.

    Thanks for reminding me to tell myself to f*ck off and stop being so hard on myself.

    • Hey Michael!
      1st of all. Better looking? Uh I’m checkin out your smilin face right now! 😉 haha

      Funny how we play tricks on ourselves like that though. I can relate to what you said about being a juggler and comparing yourself to others in your passion. For instance, I love the spanish language. And I’m pretty good at it. But sometimes I hear other people talking who are 100% fluent and then some, and I feel like I have so far to go. Yet when I do speak Spanish to others I’m always complimented on it and given support.
      Most of the time that criticism is all in our heads.

      And hey, if you ever catch yourself letting the negative self talk get to you too much, just holla at me and I’ll tell it to f*ck off for you 🙂

  • Haha I was speaking in generalities but you get my point. I’ll be sure to give you a shout if the negativity gets too bad. Cheers!

    • lol I know but I couldn’t resist. I read your latest blog post btw. It actually got me thinking a bit about how we can kind of get into these condensed limbos in regards to specific things in our lives. As in suddenly you watched an episode of The Office and you started to feel stuck in that now you won’t be able to achieve your goal. I’ve definitely been there as I’ve done similar 30 day goals, and a long list of them, and can’t seem to ever go all 30 days… biting my nails, watching a TED video a day, eating only healthy foods (no chocolate!), workout everyday, run every morning, learn a new guitar chord progression a day, learn 10 new Spanish words a day.
      I think I’ve gotten myself into my own limbo where I believe I simply can’t go the 30 days straight and I’ve become comfortable with accepting that. This has got to end!

      • I feel you on that, 30 days really isn’t that long in the grande scheme of things so yeah it sucks when you try to do something for such a short period of time and don’t do it (and it can seem like that ‘failure’ means more than it actually does) but at the same time one day isn’t that long either. Whether it’s one day of eating chocolate, one day of not working out, one day where you only learn 5 spanish words etc. If you’re rocking it out 95% of the time and slacking the other 5 that’s not really that bad is it?

        I think the important thing is that you’re trying to live intentionally and trying to better yourself each time you set a goal or challenge, you’ll only be in danger when you loose that desire to keep trying and keep pushing your own limits.

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  • This post cracked me up Laura. I was poking around your blog yesterday too. First, I just want to say that this site design is phenomenal! Wow.

    Okay, back to the post. Shut the F@$K up L2. You clearly rock!

    Seriously, though, I totally do the same thing sometimes. I’ve noticed that I get especially nasty with myself when I’m on the brink of achieving my goals. It’s almost like I’m trying to talk myself down from crossing the finish line because I’m not sure if I deserve it. Next time I start with the internal self trash talking, I’m going to remember this post and tell myself to f-off. 🙂

    • haha L2 needs to GO! And it looks like J2 needs to go as well! haha. I know exactly what you mean though! It’s like you’re climbing a mountain and you’ve hiked 8 miles and there is 1 mile left to go. And at that point you’re like, “man, I don’t think I’m going to reach the peak! One more mile!… I ican’t do it.”
      … But WE CAN!!!
      All we have to do is tell L2 and J2 to F the F off and we’ll hit that peak! 🙂
      Thanks Jenny!
      -Laur 🙂

  • Re:
    “thinking about all the amazing things you’ve been given, you’ve seen, and you’ve done, your negative self talk shuts up.”
    However, much of my “negative self-talk” is PRECISELY about those very subjects:
    “With all the amazing things you’ve been given, you’ve seen, and you’ve done — you can’t manage your CURRENT task any better than THAT?!?!”

    Suggestions, please … ?

  • And then there are the times that the “negative self-talk” is about how horrible I am for doing/believing/ever having done or believed such “negative self-talk” …