27 Dec Three trouble some Dialouge Patterns
Three troublesome inner dialogue patterns
As human beings, we all have a habit of talking with ourselves. This self-talk or inner dialogue can either be positive or negative. The positive internal dialogue helps us move forward and overcome life’s challenges.
However, the negative inner dialogue hampers our growth and slows down our progress towards our goals. So, the question is how the negative internal dialogue impacts us, and what can we do to change it into a positive inner dialogue from a negative one?
Let us consider an example of negative inner dialogue and its impact on one’s progress to understand this.
Example of a negative inner dialogue
A senior leader received an email from an important stakeholder of his business that disturbed him due to a line used in the end.
The line was, I hope your team will not disappoint us yet again.
He suddenly felt a surge of anger coupled with frustration and demotivation.
It is just one of the many examples of an external trigger that has the potential to spoil our mood. It is an example of an email. Similarly, we can have the same impact with a face-to-face conversation or a telephonic conversation.
Such external triggers impact their overall effectiveness only for a few minutes for some people. For others, maybe for a few hours or even a few days.
Does this sound familiar? What are the most common external triggers for you? How do you feel in such situations? How do you respond or act?
And above all, How to address this?
Before we understand how to address this, let us explore why does it happen?
It usually happens because of the quality of our inner dialogue.
Our inner dialogue is the series of internal conversations with ourselves leading towards a conclusion or a belief.
In this situation, the inner dialogue could be, “Why did he write such a nasty email. I had already assured him about receiving the best service from us. I think he doesn’t trust us (Conclusion).
If you study the underlying conclusion or belief, it could have three natures.
1. Permanence: A belief that the causes of bad events that happen to them are permanent (Time) -Ex He never trusts us. In this type of conclusion, one believes that the situation is forever and it will never change. It does not leave room for any change in the position, at least in the thinking of the person who has this kind of inner dialogue.
2. Pervasiveness: Permanence is about time but, pervasiveness is about space. It’s a nature of belief that makes universal explanations. Ex, He doesn’t trust our company, values, actions, and intentions, practically in all the dimensions).
3. Personalization– In such beliefs, one takes everything on themselves very personally. Ex, He doesn’t trust me.
These three types of generalizations in our conclusion are very damaging. It can potentially spoil our relationships and blows things out of proportion.
If we wish to live a happy, fulfilled, and successful life, we must learn how to change these incorrect conclusions/beliefs.
In his book, Learned Optimism, Dr. Martin Seligman shares powerful ways to dispute such limiting beliefs and empower us to change them.
Dr. Martin Seligman emphasizes that wellbeing is a reasonable individual goal, and we can achieve it by changing our limiting thoughts and identifying our unique strengths.
One can also change one’s negative inner dialogue into a positive internal dialogue using NLP.
According to the experts of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, there are four different ways in which you can change your inner dialogue:
1. By changing the tone: You say it confidently when you say a negative thing to yourself. You don’t say it in a positive or encouraging tone. So, the key is to start to change the tone around, and by doing so, you will be able to change a lot of negative energy attached to the negative belief that you may be telling yourself. For example, if you tell yourself, “oh, I am such an idiot,” then if you take the tone of certainty from it, you will take out the negative energy, and it will not sound so sure to you as it could sound in a specific tone.
If you tell the same thing in the voice of Micky mouse or Donald duck, it will not have the same effect as it would in a specific tone.
2. Ask different questions: You may ask another question whenever you catch yourself with a negative inner dialogue. For example, if you are saying to yourself, “I am such an idiot,” then ask, “how do I know that is true?” or you may ask, who says that is true? What do I mean by that? Compared by who and compared by what?
How specifically am I an idiot?
When you ask these questions, you challenge them, and the certainty of your beliefs is gone. They lose their grip on you.
3. Change the tense: Write all your negative dialogue and then put it in the past tense. For example, instead of saying, “I will never be happy because my friends always reject me,” you can say, “I was never happy because my friends used to reject me. This exercise completely changes your perspective because it puts the problem in the past, and it makes you look at the present as a lot better and the future as happier.
4. Put it in the third person: Again, write down your negative inner dialogue and rewrite it in the third person. For example, “I am a failure. I will never amount to anything. You can rewrite it as “He is a failure. He will never amount to anything. It changes how you look at it as it disassociates you from it.
In case you want to bring a shift in your work life and make it more fulfilling and successful, block your time with me for a free one-hour one-to-one conversation.