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Christopher Elliott (psychcle) wrote,
@ 2004-01-22 14:24:00
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    I've recieved a request to update my file, and so I thought that I would throw out some helpfull information
    once a week to anyone who is interested in making changes in their daily life through psychology.

    This week's topic is "That Inner Voice."

    Through studying psychology I learned that we all have an inner voice called an "inner dialog" or an inner
    conversation. This is that voice inside of you that weighs out every situation that you come accross. You know, things like, "should I call so-and -so back," or "will I fail of I try to start that home-based business." Well, although that voice can be very usefull when it comes to protecting you both physically and emotionally, it can also keep you from stepping out and doing things that could really benefit you in the long run. The problem with having an inner voice sometimes is that we tend to believe what this voice says simply because it's our own. What you have to keep in mind is that you inner voice is operating on what you've experienced in the past and what you told yourself about those experiences. For example, if you were turned down when you asked someone out back in high school and you felt really embarassed, your inner voice( who's job it is to protect you) will tell you not to ask anyone else out because you sure as hell don't want to feel that way again. Your voice lies to you and tells you that asking someone out equals pain. I'm sure that there are things in which you don't engage in simply because you have told yourself beforehand that if you try it then you may fail or you'll be humiliated.
    Here are a few simple ways you can learn to ignore your inner dialog and start attempting those things that you've been putting off:

    1. Whenever you are faced with a difficult task, or one that makes you nervouse or hesitant, simply stop
    and ask yourself what exactly it is that you are telling yourself. Are you saying to yourself, "Who are
    kidding, they'll turn you down flat," or "You know you're not qualified to do that! Go back to a job that
    you have experience in."? You must know that before you can change they way you behave, you have
    to recognize what it is that you're telling yourself.

    2. Once you've identified what your inner dialog is saying, then ask yourself, "What's the worst that can
    happen?" By allowing ourselves to realistically predict what can happen if we do fail, then we can
    usually start to realize that we can probably handle whatever the difficult situation brings.

    3. Realize that, most of the time, our fears cause us to imagine situations happening a lot worse than how
    they actually turn out. We conjure up all kinds of images in our heads of being laughed at or told off
    when in reality these situations that we've imagined usually never happen. Nine out of ten times it's
    never as bad as we've made it out to be in our minds. Our inner voice is trying to protect us from what
    we believe could be harmful.

    4. Here's the most important part: you have to TEST what it is you are telling yourself! If you say to your-
    self, "I'll never get the job, so why even apply?" or "If I tell him or her the truth, they'll never talk to
    me again," then test your theory! Don't just simply listen to your inner voice and take it as the abso-
    lute truth. You may find out that you were just filling your own head with a bunch of crap.

    5. Whatever the outcome, know that at least you didn't run from the situation. At least you can know that
    you faced the situation with guts, and you confronted your fears. That feeling alone can be worth
    more than what you would have gotten if the sitiuation had turned out the way you wanted it to in the
    first place. However, you may get what you wanted. Either way, it's win-win.

    Well, there you go. Those are just a few suggestions on how to handle your inner dialog. Just remember,
    everything that happens in your head is there for a reason. But, that doesn't mean it's there to serve you. I hope Iv'e given some good advice to someine out there. Please respond if you like and let me know whether or not I've been of any help. Thanks for reading, and I look forward to hearing your comments. Good Luck!

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