Do you ever feel stuck in a rut? Like your life’s just repeating itself over, and over, and over again?
What if I told you there was a really simple way to fix that?
And what if the answer was …. a thesaurus?
Yes, as in, that book full of big words, grouped by similar meanings. Not what you were expecting? ?
Well, today, that’s what you and I are gonna chat about: words.
In particular, we’re gonna talk about the words you use to describe yourself and your life.
I wanna know, what do you most commonly say when someone asks how your day was? Do you know what you say to yourself when you make a mistake at work, or have an argument with your partner?
I’m guessing that, most of the time, you’re not really thinking about it. You’re just on auto-pilot, repeating the same phrases over and over again.
You’re not alone in this, by the way. We all do it.
And, more often than not, we tend to use descriptions that set us in a negative mindset. Which means our experience of the world is negative too. It’s a feature of our epic internal alarm system. Our brains developed to detect danger – it’s normal for us to look at what’s wrong with a picture, instead of what’s right with it.
But you can change that.
And that’s where words come into the picture.
See, the language you use has a MASSIVE impact on the way you feel about yourself, your life and your relationships – in other words, it’s really bloody important!
For e.g. if you’re always saying ‘I’m flat out, life is so busy and full on”, then that’s the only way you can see it – busy, messy, too fast, stressful. But if you said “I’m so excited, there’s so much happening at the moment!” there are different connotations.
Can you see how the two descriptions change the way you feel?
You’ve gotta spin your self-talk.
You’ve gotta actively choose new ways of talking about and to yourself. BUT, there’s a catch. And this is where our trusty thesaurus comes in.
You’ve gotta choose words that actually mean something to YOU.
They’ve gotta be authentic, otherwise you won’t believe it!
I’ll give you an example.
In the first few months after Hakavai was born, people would ask how life with Hak was and, wanting to be honest, sometimes I’d say “It’s hard!”.
I’d say this with a smile on my face (because life as a Mum is great!) but still – how do you think it made me feel?
So, instead, I tried answering with “It’s fun!”. But that didn’t feel authentic because, while being a Mum is incredible, the experience is sometimes fun and sometimes not so fun.
So now, I say ”It’s fascinating!”.
Using the word “fascinating” totally shifts how I see my life as a parent because that word feels right for me. It makes me see my life as interesting and varied and changing – which is all true.
The trick is to find words that make you feel positive and interested in your own life AND are also true for you.
That’s the kind of self-talk spin you need to create.
Now, this is important:
It’s ok to feel tired, angry, sad, overwhelmed and busy. They’re all valid emotions and you’re gonna feel all of those things from time to time.
This exercise is not about shutting down those emotions or experiences. It’s about breaking out of patterns that might be holding you back. When it comes to the way you describe your life, I want you to have choice. And a bigger and varied vocabulary is how that starts. There are so many ways to view and experience life. Allow yourself to see that by using different words to describe your experiences!
The words you use to describe your life shape how you see it. You can either choose to use words that make you see life as hard and challenging, or you can describe your life using words that make you feel interested and grateful. – Tweet it!
It’s your choice.
Now, I’ve got a little gift for you.
Because I really want you to give this self-talk spin a go, I’ve created this cool pdf that you can download.
It’s a list of word swaps and self-talk spin I developed for myself a few months ago, and it’s been so bloody helpful that I thought you could use it too.
Don’t worry, I’ve made it look a little slicker (it’s not just my handwritten scrawl anymore ?), it’s got a stack of word swap examples to get you started and I’ve added some tips and tools you can use to make the spin actually stick.
Just pop your name and email in the form below and you’ll be taken straight to the download.
You’ll also join my letter gang, and get a new mindset or confidence boosting tip from me every week.
So, get to it! Once you’ve got my guide, you can print it out, and stick it around your house and office as reminders to get spinning that self-talk!
I hope you love it!
Did not feel like doing my workout today, shoulder injury acting up and general malaise…. I thought of you Turia and what you have been through… got up off my butt and a rough start turned into a great workout … now feeling proud and motivated. I hope you know what effect you have on people you haven’t even met 🙂
Ah! What a wonderful practice-thank you Turia for this, it’s most definitely what I needed now that I’m struggling with body image issues.-xo Dena