An interesting blog; the power of the inner dialogue.
How many of us have been saying: I really want to change this or that and never did it? How many of you have promised themselves to stop smoking and did not? And how many of you wanted to do certain errands, which are still undone?
I was thinking this over as I woke up today and realized that every single person will be able to recognize this or parts of it.
‘I really want to finish that Spanish course’, or: ‘I so want to lose some weight, but today I did not keep myself to my own promise.’
How is it possible that though we REALLY seem to WANT to accomplish things, we do the opposite?
Thinking about this further, I realized that there is a huge difference between a PROMISE and a DECISION. Let me explain this to you.
Whenever you PROMISE yourself something there can develop a MUST on that and even a GUILT feeling. A promise is a GREAT symbol for something you tell yourself to do. When you hold you to the promise, it can give you an absolutely good feeling. However when you do NOT keep to your own promise all other stuff pops up like: ‘SHIT, I feel like such a loser right now,’ or: ‘Why can’t I just DO what I promised?’ or: ‘I SHOULD never have promised this, now I feel stuck to it’ and the most of all: ’I just HATE PROMISES!’……the promise can create a “HAVE TO”…So, why do we promise and then find it hard to keep up to that?
In my belief this can have an inner felt reason; the lack of the inner dialogue. When someone asks us to do something for them, 7 out of 10 people SAY “YES” and FEEL a “NO”….Only AFTER they already said yes, they start to FEEL….and THINK….and blame themselves for not being able enough to just say NO when they feel a NO.
It seems to be that we are brought up with a lot of respect towards The Others and forget to respect ourselves and our own feelings. The Others seem to be more important than we are. Does that make sense?
The inner dialogue can be done in a non judgmental way; however, my experience with clients proves the opposite. Many of us blame or judge ourselves hugely. We even strongly develop the guilt issue and live in a way that does not correspond with what we actually feel and want. That gives a lot of frustration, grief, sadness and can lead to anger. It even can develope aggressive attitudes we decide to withhold. Until something happens and we explode………
So, what to learn from this?
How about being totally authentic? How about choosing for what we really feel and want? How about letting all the thoughts someone else has with that person? Since we do not OWN their thoughts, we do not control their way of thinking… No more stress, gone with the anger that might even create anxiety in certain situations.
I can hear the next question coming up. ‘Nice! But how do I do that in a practical way?’
Here’s the thing. Write down the situation you were in that gave you a bad feeling about yourself.
Then make a dialogue out of this like you are talking to another person.
I will give you an example.
You did not keep the promise to call your friend and now she called you up and told you that you were not a good friend.
(She cannot MAKE you feel ANYTHING, but after that you started to choose to feel bad about you)
Okay, let’s get into this.
The friend calls you up and asks you to call her back the next day. Though you have a totally filled day, you tell her yes instead of no.
The inner dialogue could be written down like this:
‘You do not really want to call her back, so just tell her you can’t make it tomorrow. Tell her you will call her when you have time to do so. Don’t think for her now, think for yourself!’ (this is the real you talking, this is the authentic you)
Here the inner critic comes along and hops into the inner dialogue:
’You are a loser; you know you can’t tell her that you don’t want to call her back. You would hurt her feelings by doing that, so just promise you will call her tomorrow! DO IT!’ and you promise your friend to call her back…. The next day you are way too busy and forget to call your friend. Is this a selective forgetting? Could be! Just ask yourself!
Now what to learn from example?
– First you are not God, so you cannot MAKE your girlfriend feel sad, disappointed or any other feeling. She does that all by herself! You are only the stimulus that gives her the opportunity to think what she decides to think!
– Second you can practice to hear the two voices; the inner voice that is telling you to stay with the authentic you and the inner critic who is always telling you the negative.
When you choose to be the REAL and ONLY YOU, STOP THINKING FOR THE OTHERS!!!
And START to think for YOU!
The inner dialogue can be written down to practice this. Just give it a try! You will be amazed what it will give you!
But then what is the difference between a promise and a decision?
A promise has a hidden possibility to ESCAPE in it. A DECISION NOT!
So, decide what is the best for YOU….a promise, or a decision?