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STOP! How To Quiet Those Little Voices In Your Head

Apr 05, 2021

Internal chatter is one of those little things that we do that nobody knows about but ourselves. It's that constant, non-stop flow of negativity that we have inside our heads. This internal chatter is a really negative and toxic habit that we all have. It's something that we don't have to have. It's something that we can remove and stop doing, for the good of our mind, attitude, and well being. So, what are these negative self talk habits that we have?

The voices in my head aren't mine. They belong to my parents, who were both abusive and often told me I was stupid. They're also my ex-spouse's voice, who told me how fat and ugly I was every day for 20 years. And last, the voice that tells me I'm worthless and that I'm stupid belongs to a boy named Chris, who succeeded in his mission to make me believe that I was nothing more than a piece of property he could use and abuse, whenever he wanted.

Many people have negative voices in their heads that tell them they are not good enough, not attractive enough, not thin enough, not strong enough... the list goes on and on. We all have these voices in our heads, and they are never completely absent. The real key is learning to quiet those voices and replace them with more positive ones. 

Do you ever find yourself standing in line at a coffee shop, or sitting in the carpool line, and then you notice your partner or friend talking to themselves? These people are not crazy, they are not mentally ill, they are just having a conversation with themselves. Yep, internal chatter, or the constant negative thoughts going through your head, is a thing. Maybe you've noticed it, or maybe you have no idea what that is. Maybe you've told yourself from time to time that you can’t start a business, write a book, take a risk, get married or tell yourself now is not the right time.

Have you ever wondered why our brain has internal chatter? There are times when we are able to control these thoughts. In fact, most of the time, we are able to control it. However, there are times when these thoughts take over and we really can't do anything about it. It can find itself getting louder and louder especially in the middle of the night. Has this ever happened to you? Can anyone relate here? Sometimes, our brain chatter can be positive. Other times, it can be very negative. Brain chatter is something that surly exist and can really take a toll. 

If you've ever found yourself thinking about how stupid you are, or not being smart enough, you're not alone. Although there is no exact percentage, some studies estimate that 60% of the mental chatter in our heads is negative, critical, self-defeating and sabotaging. It's very common. It's also very distracting and can lead to a whole host of social and emotional problems  

You've probably heard of the chorus of voices in your own head: The little devil on one shoulder and the angel on the other, one saying "Do it!" and the other saying "Don't do it!". The Buddhists call this incessant chatter in our heads "Monkey Mind". It's that feeling that you just can't concentrate. You can't focus on anything, because you're constantly worrying about something. This is usually a stressful event in the past or the future, but whatever that monkey is always on your back about, it can really mess with your present moment experience.

The Inner Critic is that voice in your head that is always criticizing and judging you. It is usually harsh, unkind, and downright mean. It's the voice that tells you that you are not   successful enough. It's the voice that makes you feel like you are never good enough no matter how hard you try, or that you will never make it, and it never shuts up.

The best way to deal with your internal chatter is to face it head on. The first step to overcoming negative self talk is to recognize it when it happens. In a quiet place, take a moment to sit down and try to identify where the negative chatter is coming from and what it's saying. One method of dealing with your negative self-talk is to replace it with positive statements. For instance, you might tell yourself "I don't always feel this way" instead of "I'm always so sad" or "I can do it" instead of "I'm not good enough."

Meditation and mindfulness are also two useful tools anyone can use to quiet those little voices in our head that tell us we can't do something. With meditation or simply being present, you can learn to notice when those thoughts come up and let them pass by, without reacting to them, while with mindfulness, you can bring your focus on the present moment and the task you are doing, to be completely absorbed in what you are doing without letting those thoughts distract you. 

So the next time you experience internal chatter (Monkey Mind), simply acknowledge it by saying, “Thanks for Sharing” that will immediately snap you out of trance and bring you to the present. Once you are there you can now easily deal with the little voices in your head with confidence and assurance to do your will not the other way around.

 

 

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