So what happens when we don’t have a positive self-talk? When we’re in a negative mindset?
NEGATIVE SELF-TALK (RUMINATION)
Rumination happens when you repeat negative thoughts in your head. People slip into this state when they become stuck with ‘negative and repetitive thoughts’ preventing them from moving to a solution.
Certainly, working through problems is productive when it moves you towards resolution. But, perseverating on these thoughts without a solution in sight, may negatively affect your well-being and could lead to mental illnesses such as anxiety or depression.
Here are some common examples of what rumination can feel like:
- “I’m always in my head.”
- “I have racing thoughts.”
- “I’m constantly dwelling on things.”
- “I can’t shut my mind off.”
- “I tend to overthink everything.”
Focusing on a problem with the goal of finding a solution is the key to personal success. It doesn’t mean there won’t be slips or falls along the way, but your can-do mindset or self-talk, is the critical tool in your tool chest.
“I messed up at work today, but I learned something and understand where I went wrong. Tomorrow is another day. I’ve got this.”
I am not here as an expert on the mental health challenges that may go along with negative self-talk. That is not my focus today. What I AM here to comment on are the benefits of POSITIVE self-talk.
Successful leaders have many things in common. At the heart of all of them is a ‘Can Do’ approach — a mindset that looks for solutions for even the most daunting of problems. When I think of all of the amazing accomplishments around the world, NONE of them resulted because the solution finder focused on the negative. Solutions are found when we find a way to climb the proverbial mountain in front of us.
“This project is difficult, but I’m sure there’s a way forward.”
“I’ve had tight timelines before, but I can do this.”
You never reach the possible if you’re focused on why you can’t get there.
Great obstacles make great leaders.Billy Diamond, former grand chief of the James Bay Crees
Those who take action have a disproportionate impact. The power of one is to move many.Elizabeth May, former leader of the federal Green Party
Successful leaders are abundantly optimistic. People look to their leaders for inspiration, hope and options.Dave Eberwein
So, listen to that voice inside your head. Is it finding a path forward or putting up a wall of negativity? It’s yours to choose.