The other day when I was clearing out some notes on my phone, I came across a sentence I’d entered more than a year ago. I don’t know whether it was derived from someone else’s words or from my own, so I’m going to take credit for it. This is the sentence:
Just because things aren’t going the way you planned, doesn’t mean they’re not going the way they should.
I sure hope I was the author because I love this!
I started saying this to myself during the lowest moment of my life, when my husband suddenly passed away and I was faced with an expensive battle in probate court. That was more than 10 years ago, and it’s helped me through many periods of anxiety ever since. Sometimes, I shorten the message to “Nancy, you’re exactly where you’re supposed to be.” In any event, I help myself get past whatever I perceive is holding me back. And I’ve got to tell you, IT WORKS FOR ME.
I don’t know a single adult who hasn’t encountered a challenge, a hardship, or a problem that’s too serious to be decided by the flip of a coin. It’s part of our purpose in life, to learn the difficult lessons we’re meant to learn, and to teach others from our own experience. Health issues, financial issues, employment issues, family issues, you name it and someone you know is likely experiencing some sort of difficulty in one of these areas right now. If there’s something out there to calm our racing minds, even for a moment, isn’t it worthwhile to find it and adopt it?
I sometimes share my mantra with clients who are going through especially tough times, mainly to demonstrate my empathy for their situations. Just because IT WORKS FOR ME doesn’t mean it’s the panacea for anyone or everyone else. So here’s where I need your input.
Do you talk to yourself when you’re worried or anxious?
Where are you when these talks occur?
Do you refer to yourself by name, or by an unflattering adjective?
Is your tone gentle or harsh?
What sorts of things do you say to yourself?
Are you able to resolve an internal conflict?
I’m really interested in finding out what works for you (as well as what doesn’t). I’m also really interested in finding out whether you teach any form of self-talk to your kids. How are we instilling confidence and a positive attitude in the next generation(s)?
If any one of you thinks a participation trophy is the answer, please keep your comments to yourself. That being said, I am hoping to share some of your insights in a future blog. Anonymously, of course.
Thanks in advance for your help.
Thanks for this great post. I don’t refer to myself by name but have an implied “you” in the conversation. Mostly I’m reminding myself to notice what’s happening in my body and ask myself to allow the emotions to happen. Then I can be a better observer of the situation and move on with more awareness. I love your question about teaching my children self-talk. I do tell them not to say mean things to themselves but haven’t stopped to really give them other, more mindful things to say or do. I will now!
We all talk to ourselves from time to time. ” I can’t believe I did that”. “OK this is going to be one of those days”. And many more statements. For me it is STOP take a breath and look at the what is going on logically. If the emotion is taken out of the equation most of the time the problem can be dealt with more simply and easily. It works for me.