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2: Size Up Your Situation

Size Up Your Self-Talk

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Conversations you have with yourself also can influence your acceptance of events. Using positive inner language can help you come to terms with circumstances or to focus on solutions rather than worst-case scenarios.

You might not totally eliminate it, but there are ways to tone down negative self-talk:

  • Avoid inflexible words and phrases like always, should have, or never.
  • Treat your self-talk as a third person. If a friend were expressing these thoughts, what advice would you give them? Sometimes it helps to write your self-talk down or speak it aloud so that you can observe your thoughts more objectively.
  • Combat negative thoughts with positive responses. For example, each time you notice yourself having a certain thought, such as “We will never be able to afford to buy a home,” you might think, “I don’t know how it will happen, but our perfect home is on the way.” (Of course, you will get there more quickly if you also take proactive actions toward this goal.)

Self-Talk Check

Take a moment to reflect on your thoughts and inner language using this checklist for areas related to financial fitness. Put a mark in each column when you assess your ability to engage in the financial activity listed (you can check more than one column):

self-talk check

Now look at the number of times you checked each column. What does this tell you about your inner thoughts and self-talk related to financial goals? How do you think this influences your actions?

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