This blog is based on a letter I wrote to my sweet grand niece after visiting her in Michigan. It was a challenge to try to explain self-talk to an 8 year old!


 

Dear Stella Bella,

It was so good to see you. It was fun looking at the pictures of you and your family when you were little. I also liked hearing about Ethan and Dallas!!! I have the yellow duck you gave me on my bedside table, so I can see her and think of you. <3
duckCongratulations on finishing your GOTR challenge.. I know you had to practice a lot.   Remember you showed me your “Girls on the Run” log? You had written self-talk as one way to reach your goal. I’ve learned a lot about self-talk from school and life. I love you and want you to live a joyful life, so I’d like to share some of my secrets about this with you.6Do you remember a time when someone said something that made you feel really, really great? It may have been how hard you worked in school, how skilled you are at basketball or that you are a beautiful person. Don’t these compliments make your heart shine from the inside out?7

I don’t know about you, but I’ve had people say mean stuff about me, like “you talk too much and you’re not nice.” Even when you KNOW these things are not true they really hurt. It feels like you got punched in the stomach, right?8Self-talk is the stuff YOU tell yourself, ABOUT yourself. It’s totally normal to do this in your head, everyone does. When you say positive things like “Wow, I sounded out that big word, I’m getting to be a better reader,” my guess is you probably feel happy and want to learn more.9But what if you struggled with a really hard math problem and said to yourself “I’m dumb, I’ll never understand math.” That kind of self -talk makes you want to give up doesn’t it?10Here’s the awesome part….are you ready…..are you sure……..REALLY SURE??????

OK, Stella Bella, here are my secrets about self-talk…

  1. No one can MAKE YOU say mean things to your self.
    YOU and ONLY you decide what to say to yourself., about yourself. If you catch yourself saying mean things to yourself, you can choose to be more kind in your self-talk. 

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  1. Just because you have a thought about yourself doesn’t mean it is true.
    Thoughts pop into our heads all the time. Some are true some are just monkey chatter. For example if I had the thought “I’m a purple giraffe” would that be true? 

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  1. Self-talk effects how you feel and think about yourself, other people and your life.
    It can help you feel happier, be nicer to people and challenge yourself to really sparkle.

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The trick is to tell your-self stuff that is 100% true. Self-talk doesn’t always have to be “sunny side up” but it does need to give you self partial credit. Here are a few of the things I say to my self when I feel discouraged.

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Not everything in life is easy,
but if I work at it, I will get better.

Nobody in the whole world
sparkles exactly the way I do.

Every day in every way, I can become
stronger, smarter and kinder.

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Well, that’s it for today, sweet Stella Bella. Know that I love you very much. I’m not sure if you have heard this song, but I want you to know that the words describe my best wish for you. Here are some of them and a link if you want to listen to it.

Brave by Sara Bareilles

“Nothing’s gonna hurt you the way that words do
When they settle ‘neath your skin
Kept on the inside and no sunlight
Sometimes a shadow wins
But I wonder what would happen if you

Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave”

Just one last thought…….If you ever have a terrible, rotten, worst-est day ever and even good self talk doesn’t seem to make it better………

!!!!DANCE IT OUT!!!!

It works I promise 🙂