This series aims at a young woman hoping to morph from adolescence into mature adulthood. Previous articles covered dedication to hopes and dreams, courage to change, and self-image to be changed. Today, we see that self-talk makes it all happen.
The natural process of life called the self-fulfilling prophecy makes self-talk work. The SFP has two sides. Indirectly and over time we tend to become what others think we are or expect us to be. Adolescents are especially vulnerable. Your mom told you about associating with ‘those people’.
Today, however, we focus on the other side of SFP. Very automatically, naturally, directly, and continually we update the picture we have of ourselves, i.e., our self-image. Self-talk is the SFP vehicle by which we change our self-image.
Self-talk is what we tell ourselves about ourselves. And you know what? We believe ourselves and live according to our beliefs. Thus, self-talk changes us and our self-image. We capitalize on the SFP, and we become what we claim ourselves to be. Quite naturally self-talk becomes the primary tool to elevate a young woman beyond the adolescent mindset.
Tell ourselves over and over who we are and what we do and we become the mixture of pixels that we imagine, visualize, and believe as the picture of ourselves as seen by ourselves. Pixels such as these: Call ourselves dumb and we stay that way. Call ourselves successful and success becomes easier. Call ourselves failures and we fail more often. Call ourselves professional and we live by higher standards. Call ourselves a hot date and we overdo hot. Call ourselves respectful of the time of others and we become punctual. Call ourselves a lover of Christ and we have greater love to dispense to others. Call ourselves more important than others and we become narcissistic. Call ourselves unable to control events and we become depressed. Call ourselves ugly and we act it out. Call ourselves a poor spouse and we disappoint our mate. Call ourselves attractive and we become more so. Call ourselves unable and we turn incompetent. Call ourselves an expert driver and we speed a lot. Call ourselves victims and we diminish our sense of personal responsibility.
Call ourselves what we want to be and we move toward it. However, claim to be what we don’t want and we get that too. Self-talk produces what we think about whether good or bad, desired or not desired, helpful or detrimental.
A woman seeking to change herself uses self-talk positively. She always tells herself in many different ways that she is successful on the way to whatever she needs, wants, or dreams. Conversely, she spends no time telling herself about her failures, mistakes, and lack of progress being made. (The VICTORY page at blog top may help her stay focused.)
For example, she handles mistakes, failures, fears, and anxieties the same way. She ignores them in every possible way and extent. Whether she commits a blunder or indiscretion or yields sex against her principles, recovery is the same. Plus and beneficially, excess guilt is unloaded rather than absorbed to intensify.
Recovery is much simpler with self-talk dedicated to forgetting her mistakes or failures. First, she seeks God’s readily available forgiveness and then forgives herself. Then, she has to forget it. To do that, she focuses her self-talk on her gratefulness for what and who she is in her world. She keeps her self-talk focused on her successes and strengths and away from failures and weaknesses. Recovery occurs much more quickly than normal as repetition rapidly upgrades her beliefs.
The benefits of self-talk can be magnified with a journal. Record and reinforce positive, affirming, and grateful thoughts and accomplishments. Avoid confessions about anxieties, fears, weaknesses, and mistakes as women used to record in diaries.
Exploiting the SFP through self-talk can change a woman’s self-image from adolescent to adult. Claiming micro successes while disregarding mistakes and failures alters her self-image. That breeds internal courage, which enhances her self-dedication to fulfilling her hopes and dreams.
‘I’m not what I’m gonna be, but thank God I’m not what I used to be’. It summarizes the first four articles in this series. Two subjects remain: self-esteem and self-interest.