Everybody wants a best friend, someone to talk them through the challenges life throws at them. On my early run today, I found myself wishing there was someone there beside me to talk to, especially when my foot started to hurt. Then I realized there was someone and in fact there always is. I was there. I realized I could be my own best friend and face this challenge.
Now, if I’m being honest, I’m not always very kind to myself. In fact, I’m often my own worst critic. I’m very self-deprecating and can be very mean to myself at times. I’m sure I’m not alone in that. How many times have you chided yourself for being too fat, too pale, too slow or any other put down that came to mind in the moment?
I’ve spent a lot of time these past weeks watching the Olympic Games in Rio. I’ve noticed many of those athletes deep in thought prior to their performances. Some were even talking to themselves. I’m sure they weren’t telling themselves everything that was wrong at that critical moment. Rather than putting themselves down, they were lifting themselves up. There’s that mind shift again! These athletes were behaving as if they were their own best friend. They were using positive self talk to mentally prepare themselves for the challenge ahead.
Lauren Hernandez was observed many times saying, I’ve got this before performing. And she surely did! Lauren did not stand there and say I’m not better than Simone. Nope, she used positive self talk and worked her way to winning medals. In fact, she was amazing. I also saw many runners preparing for the start of their race using self talk.
Research has proven that positive self talk can build one’s confidence and motivation. With so many others in this world seeking to put us down, why do we do it to ourselves? We need to shift or self talk and move away from the negative. It’s time to become our own best friend. I’m going to practice this strategy starting now. No more putting myself down, or filling my head with all the things I feel I’m lacking in. From now on, I’m going to use positive self talk and support myself on my journey to health. Next time I lace up those running shoes, which is tomorrow; rather than worry about it, I’m simply going to say, I’ve got this! Then, I’ll take several deep breaths and go get it done.