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How NOT to talk to yourself

The cast of SExT on stage at Kapuskasing District High School, the first stop of our 2018 National Tour.

The person you talk to the most is not your grandma, cat, or bestie. It is you! The inner voice in your head is constantly talking to you. From your waking moment to your slumber, you are listening and talking to yourself. Hence it is important that we don’t do it the wrong way. I don’t really know what the “right” way is, but I definitely know what the “wrong” way is. ​

​When we make a huge mistake it is very easy to get into a spiral. “I can’t do anything right, I let everyone down, I am such a mess! How do I still have my job? I don’t deserve to have the friends that I have”. It is a bottomless pit. You can keep going down the spiral to the end of time or until you are mentally exhausted. But before you start doing, that there is a very healthy exercise you can do to avoid falling into the bottomless pit. For example: you just hit another car while driving and it was 100% your fault. You go home and your first thoughts towards yourself might be: “I am 31 years old and I still can’t drive properly. It doesn’t seem like I can do anything properly. Mom was right! I am completely useless. I can’t even drive a car. How will I keep my new job? Oh shit, I will have to skip tomorrow because of the injury. What if I lose my job because of this?" You then proceed to cook up 100 more theories of how your whole life was ruined because of this. Instead of going into this negative vortex of self talk, we must do this exercise first. Just imagine what you would say to a good friend who has made the exact same mistake you did. You would probably say, “Listen man. You were really stressed about starting your new job, so you made a mistake. It happens. Millions of car accidents happen every day. People who are professional drivers end up making mistakes too. Why would your boss fire you because you called in sick? Everybody has a certain number of sick days. It is also unlawful to do that. Watch some good TV, have a snack and go to bed. You will feel better tomorrow”. Talk to yourself like you would talk to a good friend of yours. If you wouldn't say it to a friend who you love and care about, don’t say it to yourself. This will be very hard to do though. If you have been talking to yourself negatively for the past 20 years, it will be excruciatingly difficult to rewire your brain. But it is worth it, the end results are absolutely worth the pain. This can be applied to pretty much everything. Most people’s knee jerk reaction to their own photos is to be very critical of the photo. Let’s just imagine it’s a photo of a friend of ours and *BOOM* all that critical view is gone. The friend you will always have is yourself so speak kindly to him or her. This journey of life is a long one and a loving friend who always has your back is crucial. Have your back!

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