How we talk to ourselves is so crucial when we have anxiety! Anxiety itself like the front wheel of the issue spinning us forward.
But when we speak to ourselves negatively and beat ourselves up can become a second wheel and as big an issue as the worry itself.
Yet we don’t see it. We think tough love with ourselves will solve it.
This can range for telling ourselves we are being silly to full on calling ourselves stupid, dumb, weak, worthless or any other number of names.
Whatever part of us that is anxious is so probably for a reason. The focus of the anxiety isn’t always necessarily the reason but old feelings may be attached to the new or current situations.
But when we push our worries away and call them or oursleves silly we are actually only insuring that they are going to come back stronger or when we don’t want them.
Repression and self chastising never work in the long term, but self compassion and engaging solid reasoning help us to feel better.
I always tell this story in sessions because it’s so true about how we talk to ourselves.
Imagine you are in the airport with a travel companion, you two are chained together. Where one goes the other has to come too.
The companion is endlessly worried about missing the flight, about being late, about people seeing them, about not being good enough, etc.
How do you think you are going to make the flight?
Is it by bullying and pushing them into getting on the flight with you? If you said yes then imagine you were in their shoes. Belittled, insulted, abused and not heard.
They might come with you for a while but human nature is they will pipe up again and maybe even refuse to move until they are calm.
What some of you might have said you’d do is sit down with them and listen to what’s going on, breathe with them, help them figure it out and show support.
That way you both make the flight!
Internally we are the same. When we attack ourselves our inner part goes on strike. This leads to downright inner civil war for some people.
It leads to depression, self hatred, loss of confidence and a losing of our sense of self. If we don’t want to listen to what our bodies or minds are telling us then it’s like being stuck in an arranged marriage with someone we hate.
Reading this it might seem like oh it’s easier said than done to change how we self talk. But maybe try listing out your issues and asking and what if a friend or family member had these issues.
Would you say what you say to yourself then? No you’d probably say wow you need a break, a hug or maybe just to think things through logically.
We say things to ourselves that we wouldn’t dream of saying to someone else.
When we’re anxious this has to change or nothing else can change.
Inner critics and harsh inner voices cause issues for many of the clients I see in clinic.
These and other issues and always workable. To find out more about how I work with anxiety feel free to message the page or call/text 087 063 0948.
Have a great rest of the week!
Anxiety is like a Merry-go-round, going nowhere, it’s ok to step off!