Link I'll never drink again Vol. 2: I talk to myself.

Monday, December 25, 2006

I talk to myself.

Do you? Recently, I was at work and working on a project that I really thought someone else should be doing instead of me. I was in this trailer and there was only one other guy there and he was in another office. As I was sorting through 5,000 sheets of paper looking for a special 100 of them I was evidently talking to myself. Rick the other guy came out and said who are you talking to and I just said me and then felt embarrassed. Then I started to really pay attention to how often I do it. Turns out, I do it a lot. So far I've caught myself doing it at the grocery store, the laundromat, in the car and especially at home with my dog Max. So I asked my therapist about it and he hadn't ever thought about it. He said, he never read about it in his studies. He suggested I Google it and to let him know what I found out. Here's an article that I found from some therapist in Milwaukee. Sssssh. Don't interrupt me while I'm talking to myself.

In old movies, if you wanted to show that someone was really crazy you'd show them talking to themselves.Even if they were only doing it mentally, it was supposed to be a sure sign of mental illness. What's really bizarre about this is that the act of talking to ourselves is actually a sign that we are self-aware and that we seek insight into our own actions. Talking to ourselves mentally is actually a hallmark of being human and proof that we are a higher species.
WE ALL DO IT (only most of us don't do it outloud)
We all have mental conversations with ourselves.
Self-talk is so constant that meditation groups, relaxation tapes, and self-help books focus on just trying to get us to be able to stop all the self-talk for a few seconds of deep relaxation.
But, in a sense, we can measure our degree of psychological pain by checking out our self-talk.
It's not whether we do it, it's what we say to ourselves that matters.

It would be wonderful if we only said well-thought-out, self-protective, self-loving things to ourselves.
It would be wonderful, but it's just not true for most of us most of the time.
A lot of self-talk is critical. It's as if our private mental world is occupied by a watchdog who is always anxious to point out our flaws.
To a degree, this is self-protective.It "resets our automatic pilot" when it is veering too far off course.But one of the quickest and best ways to improve our lives is through changing negative self-talk.
How do we go about it?

1) Become aware of it.
2) Label its source.3) Change it.4) Notice how different you feel.5) Decide whether to change it further.6) Don't think you are finished.

Journaling seems to be the most popular technique for becoming aware of your self-talk at the moment.
But whether you use a real journal or just try to notice what you say to yourself without a journal,look for the disagreements within yourself.
Sometimes these disagreements will be almost auditory.(What's he mean almost?) One side will say something and the other side will say "That's not true," etc.
But any self-talk that makes you feel bad contains a "disagreement."The disagreement is between the self-talk and the healthy part of us that doesn't want to feel bad!

So, what I get from all of this is that he thinks it's all a mental exercise and for me, it's a verbal exercise. I'll try and stop being so vocal and perhaps I've not been blogging enough. If journaling is a great way to self-talk then I can post more often. And, you know, I always feel better after I post. Talk to you soon.


Blogger recoveryroad said...

I have an internal dialogue. Mostly stream of consciousness drivel. Lol.

Merry Xmas. Hope you're well.


3:12 PM  
Blogger Trudging said...

I talk to myself all the time. Hang in there brohan!

6:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I realize I talk to myself the day after drinking heavily.

1:54 AM  

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