The Power of Positive Self-Talk

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As a business owner, I find it helpful to seek the counsel and advice of other business owners, as I guess most of you do too. I generally seek out those who have several years of business experience, who have worked through both the good times and the bad, and have come out the other end.

I assumed it was those that had been in business a while, that had the most to offer. Well I got that wrong! My daughter runs her own business and she must be coming up to her first anniversary very soon. We were chatting about how things were for her and this is what she said.


“Mum I have to change the language I use when I talk to myself. I find it really hard to approach people for a sale, I tell myself it’s hard and I hate it. I’ve finally realised I need to be more positive in my attitude and tell myself that I enjoy it and find it very satisfying. If I keep telling myself I hate it, that becomes my truth, and I need to change that.”

Wise words from someone both young and technically, inexperienced in business, yet so insightful and helpful. Have you ever thought about the language you use to yourself?

Self- talk is intrapersonal communication. It is the internal dialogue that takes place within us that is specifically about ourselves. So what words do you use when having that conversation to yourself in your head?

Would you say something like, Oh no, it’s Monday already. I hate Mondays and I have so much to get done by Wednesday. Or would you say to yourself, “I love Monday’s it’s a great day to plan for the busy week ahead and work out what I want to achieve?

Harriet B Braiker in her article “The power of ‘Self-Talk“, warns us “not to confuse self-talk with mindless positive thinking, happy affirmations or, even worse, self-delusion. For example, if I were to tell myself that I’m no good at artistic endeavours, my self-talk would be negative but not flawed. The truth is, I have difficulty drawing a straight line. On the other hand, if I say I can’t do anything right, that would be flawed, overgeneralized thinking. What you want is accurate, logical self-talk”.

Talking positively to ourselves can lift our mood; it can energise us and it will overflow into being positive and encouraging to our colleagues, family members and friends, making us great people to be around. But to change our negative internal dialogue we need to start with self-awareness. We have to listen to how we speak to ourselves and if it’s negative correct ourselves using the power of positive affirmation.

I encourage you to spend this week working on positive affirmations, turning your negative self-talk around and having a glass half full.

Good luck!

Sue Avison is the Director of Say It Once – business, content and publication writing.

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