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Mental Health & Self-Talk: Three Destructive Voices



Welcome back to Consider Yourself Hugged: A Place for Women! Click here to listen to Episode 103. (***Disclaimer: We provide these notes as a skeleton for the show - nothing fancy 😄)


Two weeks ago I shared a story with you about having an angry meltdown. Here's the episode if you want the details. Basically I got upset about a household “task” and I absolutely lost my mind! Venomous language poured out of me. One thing I shared was how surprised I was that it happened, and I mentioned that it freaked me out because it hadn’t happened in such a long time – not that level of anger, anyway.


Today I want to go a bit deeper about the voices in our heads and the impact they have on our mental health. So here goes.


1. Getting mad at yourself for feeling what you feel

When my meltdown was over, and I had a day or so to start processing, one of my first emotions was anger! How could I let that happen? What is wrong with me?! But then I went further. Why did I feel that way? Was I mad because I’m not perfect at the very thing I teach to others? I think that was part of it, and realizing that allowed me to let that go.


So what do you do? A better way is to start that question earlier. It just doesn’t make sense to be angry at yourself for feeling a feeling, right?! Anger is wasted if it doesn’t lead to some kind of change, whether in your actions or in your thoughts.


2. Wishing to be normal

I’m so sorry to tell you, but there is no normal! We all have emotions and mental health, on a continuum.


During the deepest days of anxiety, panic, and despair in my life, I SO wanted to be normal. I’ve had many conversations with people battling to be mental healthy tell me they SO want to be normal.


Wishing to be normal automatically sets you up to fail because, as you know, it doesn’t exist.


So what do you do? A better way is to visualize a line that has 1 on one end and 10 on the other. 1 means you feel on top of the world. 10 means you feel like the world is on top of you.

Ask yourself where you currently live on that line. One day it might be an 2. On a bad day it might be a 8. Remind yourself that everyone lives on that line. And you know what – occasionally ask your friends to score themselves. It might sound weird, but talking about your mental health is actually fairly common, it’s just that we don’t call it that. Like how’s everything going? How are you feeling? etc. Instead of saying I’m sorry or I know what you mean maybe admit that you have bad days sometimes and that you’re coming to understand there’s no normal. Talk about your score, and feel heard!


3. This feeling is bad. Period. With no further analysis

You might be wondering, how could anxiety, or extreme anger for example, be anything but bad? Well, my anger about the household thing (even the anger at myself – albeit it should be quick) was a prompt that I was feeling something. Something wasn't right. I was a bit overwhelmed. I wasn’t taking care of myself.


What about anxiety, which is an extreme form of fear, anticipation that something bad will happen. Listen, for me, the feeling of anxiety is worse than anything I have ever felt in my life! My childhood anxiety, my adult perfectionism anxiety, anxiety about my husband, children’s and family’s welfare. The worst!! But, if I tell myself that it’s bad with no other analysis, then I feel worse. I revert to wanting to be normal. I get angry.


So what do you do? This is actually something I’ve been working on for the last few months. Anxiety, for example, is telling you something. So instead of wasting the mental energy telling yourself how bad it is, use that energy instead to do the onion peeling with questions like


Why?

Yeah, so?

It sounds like you…

So what can you do

Have you tried…


Like, literally annoy yourself with it, as if you’re doing therapy for yourself. For example:


Why am I anxious? Oh because I have an event coming up.

Yeah, so? Well, I don’t know if it’ll go well.

Why? Because I don’t feel prepared.


And keep going. Don’t let yourself off the hook until you get to the root of it. The more you do this, the better you’ll be.


Finally, I also want to encourage you to do some deeper analysis with this question:


Do I think I have a mental health disorder or am I simply having a bad day/time period?


Answering this question should guide your choices! Always be open to getting the help you need. Visit the National Institute of Mental Health for a wide variety of resources.

The scoring assessments I gave you in episode 101:

Click here to take a more detailed assessment (MHQ score)

Click here for a more critical screening

Never let someone shame you into not getting the help you need! Take care of your mental health.


These part of self-talk you might not know. You’ve probably learned don’t say negative things to yourself like I’m dumb or I’m not good enough. But this type of self talk can be buried. It takes a bit more digging Before a big speaking engagement or when I am trying to book one I can develop imposter syndrome or anxiety. And then I get mad at myself for having anxiety. Then I just want to be normal. Then I think I might quit doing it. So I try to analyze it and call it something different and realize how strange it would be if I didn’t have some intense feelings before these things happen.


You can do it! You can get to know your own mind, your own thoughts, your own voices. And you should. It's worth the effort.


Thanks for joining today! As I've always asked in the past, please pass the show link along to your friends and subscribe, download, and review wherever you are listening. If you’re a woman and you haven’t joined our private FB group, A Place for Women, please do that now! Also, below a Leesi updated pic in case you're interested, and the episode is here!


Thank you so much for joining me again and for the continued growth of our show!


And until next time, Consider Yourself Hugged 😘🤗



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