How to Hit the Mute Button on Negative Self Talk (and Why You Should Make it a Priority)


Our inner voice, also known as self-talk, can significantly influence our thoughts, emotions, and overall well-being. For some individuals, that inner voice tends to be negative, critical, and self-sabotaging. This negative self-talk can impact our self-esteem, confidence, and ability to achieve our goals. However, it is possible to quieten that negative inner voice and cultivate a more positive and empowering mindset. In this article, we will explore four techniques to help you mute your negative inner voice and foster a healthier and more supportive self-dialogue.

Table of Contents

Practice Self-Awareness

The first step in muting your negative inner voice is to become aware of it. Often, negative self-talk operates on autopilot, and we may not even realize the extent to which it affects us. Pay attention to your thoughts and the language you use when speaking to yourself. Notice any recurring negative statements, self-criticisms, or limiting beliefs that arise.

Journaling can be a powerful tool to increase self-awareness. Write down your negative thoughts and examine them objectively. Challenge their validity and consider alternative, more positive perspectives. By shining a light on your negative self-talk patterns, you gain the power to change them.

Reframe Negative Thoughts

Once you are aware of your negative inner voice, it’s time to reframe those thoughts into more positive and empowering ones. When a negative thought arises, consciously challenge it and replace it with a positive affirmation or a more realistic and compassionate statement.

For example, if your inner voice says, “I’m not good enough,” reframe it to, “I am capable and deserving of success.” Or if your inner voice says, “I always mess things up,” reframe it to, “I am human, and making mistakes is part of the learning process.”

It may take time and practice to reframe negative thoughts, but with consistent effort, you can gradually shift your inner dialogue to be more supportive and encouraging.

Practice Self-Compassion

Negative self-talk often stems from a lack of self-compassion and self-acceptance. We tend to be harsher with ourselves than we would be with others. Cultivating self-compassion involves treating yourself with kindness, understanding, and acceptance, especially in moments of self-doubt or perceived failure.

When you notice your negative inner voice kicking in, pause and offer yourself compassion. Remind yourself that it’s normal to make mistakes and that everyone has their own unique journey. Practice self-care activities that nurture your well-being, such as taking breaks, engaging in hobbies, or seeking support from loved ones. Treat yourself with the same kindness and empathy you would extend to a friend facing a similar situation.

Surround Yourself with Positivity

The people and environments we surround ourselves with can significantly influence our inner voice. Seek out positive influences that uplift and inspire you. Surround yourself with supportive and encouraging individuals who believe in your abilities and goals.

Engage in activities that bring you joy and boost your confidence. Read uplifting books, listen to motivational podcasts, or find inspiring mentors or role models. Fill your social media feeds with accounts that promote positivity, self-improvement, and personal growth. By consciously choosing positivity in your external environment, you can gradually shift the tone of your inner voice.

In conclusion, muting your negative inner voice is a journey that requires self-awareness, intentional reframing, self-compassion, and surrounding yourself with positivity. Be patient with yourself as you work on changing ingrained thought patterns. Celebrate small victories along the way and remember that nurturing a positive inner voice is a lifelong practice.

By consciously directing your self-talk towards self-empowerment, self-acceptance, and self-compassion, you can transform your mindset and create a more fulfilling and positive internal dialogue. Embrace the power of your thoughts, and let them become a source of inspiration and encouragement as you navigate life’s challenges and pursue your dreams.

Dr. Michelle Rozen
Dr. Michelle Rozen

Dr. Michelle Rozen, Ph.D., is a highly respected authority on the psychology of change. She is one of the most booked motivational speakers nationwide as well as internationally, and a frequent guest on media outlets such as NBC, ABC, FOX News, and CNN on topics related to dealing with change in our world and in every aspect of our lives, so that we can do better and feel better.

Her most recent book, 2 Second Decisions helps people power through with their most challenging decisions through turbulent times.

Dr. Michelle Rozen consistently speaks for Fortune 500 companies and her clients include some of the most recognizable companies in the world including Johnson & Johnson, Merrill Lynch, Pfizer, and The U.S. Navy. She holds a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in Psychology and resides in the greater NYC area.

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