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Talking to Yourself Out Loud: How Your Own Words Shape How You Think

Learning

Teaching someone makes us learn the subject well, and we can identify our areas of improvement.

Similarly, self-talking is a great way to learn, as it makes us slow down and be single-minded. This is especially helpful while doing an online course or preparing for an exam.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Talking to Yourself Out Loud: How Your Own Words Shape How You Think

Talking to Yourself Out Loud: How Your Own Words Shape How You Think

https://david-neuman.com/talking-out-loud/

david-neuman.com

6

Key Ideas

Systems and Goals

Systems are personal habits that we incorporate into our daily routines.

Building a better system is better than putting additional effort to correct errors, struggling to rise upwards towards one's perceived goal.

Talking to yourself out loud is one example of such a personal system.

Talking Out Loud

Talking out loud helps spell out your intentions, and provides clarity.

Talking out loud about a problem allows you to better understand the problem, provides a certain detached view of the problem by framing it differently and can help identify possible solutions.

Learning

Teaching someone makes us learn the subject well, and we can identify our areas of improvement.

Similarly, self-talking is a great way to learn, as it makes us slow down and be single-minded. This is especially helpful while doing an online course or preparing for an exam.

Decision Making and Time Management

Self-talking can save us a lot of time by getting us out of our procrastination, and wake us up from our distractions. It makes decisions easier and makes us more committed to getting things done.

What we say to ourselves matters

Clearing any self-doubt and removing 'imposter syndrome' from our mind is a huge benefit of self-talking.

If you are feeling inadequate, incompetent, or simply in doubt, practicing self-compassion by giving yourself a pep-talk can work wonders.

Self-Management

We all want to grow every day, become better problem solvers, make decisions, learn new things and then teach them to others, journal about what's going on in our lives and trying to accomplish our goals. All of this requires self-management.

Self-talking as a self-management tool is a proactive approach at our disposal.

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  • Go to bed smarter than when you woke up.
  • "I’m not smart enough to figure everything out myself, so I want to master the best of what other people have already figured out."
If you want to think better...
  • Become better at probing other people’s thinking. Ask questions. Simple ones are better. “Why” is the best.
  • Slow down. Make sure you give yourself time to think.
  • Probe yourself. Try and understand if you’re talking about something you really know something about or if you’re just regurgitating something you heard.

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Start Your Mornings Right

Mornings are mostly spent on auto pilot mode, leading to each day being a routine affair. Mornings can be lived intentionally, and are fundamental in changing our days, years and entire lives.

...
Activities To Do
  • Writing a Journal: Writing acts like a mind emptier and one feels energized and ready to go.
  • Read your Yesterday Journal: It gives a fresh and clear perspective to what you did the previous day.
  • Set a Goal: Set a goal for yourself and try to follow it during the day.
  • Opening Windows: Let the fresh air inside, letting yourself be refreshed and receptive.
Move
  • Exercise: Get yourself moving in the morning and bless your body with endorphins for the whole day. Going for a short walk also sets up the stage for the day, making you aware and energetic.
  • A Short Yoga session: Do some Surya Namaskars or Sun Salutation, and give yourself calm and balance, in just five minutes.
  • Spend time in the Garden: If possible, go to the garden or terrace and breathe in the fresh air, clearing your mind and your senses.

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The Dynamics of a Resolution

We all have goals to achieve and behavioral changes we want to implement. Making the resolution is the easy part. The implementation and the work that is to be put in daily is the real challenge.

Why Resolutions Fail
  • Getting motivated by negative emotions like fear or regret.
  • A sudden influx of motivation followed by giving up in the first instance of a setback ("All or Nothing" approach).
  • Having a big and unattainable resolution.
  • Not being in terms with the concept of failure.
  • Not committing fully to the process.
Social Pressure

New research suggests we are less prone to keep working on our goals after we publicize them. This is because we may end up talking about our goals and celebrating our success prematurely rather than implementing them.

Social Pressure makes us fearful, as we can feel afraid of appearing inept. This negative mindset does not work well where we need daily work.

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Be in the Right Mindset

To put yourself in the right mindset, you need to:

  • Know your 'why': why is accomplishing this goal important to you.
  • Read the right books and talk to people with s...
Make the Habit a Priority

The most effective way to turn your goal into a habit is to plan ahead. 

You can't hope that your goals will happen to fit into your current schedule, or that by nature you will prioritize it. You have to plan your schedule and block out time. 

Have an Accountability Buddy

An accountability buddy can work really well when you're doing everything else right.

The key is finding someone reliable and truly committed. If you can't find someone to be an accountability buddy, ask your family for support.

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Wit is the humor that creates charm and impresses with intelligence
  • Don’t try too hard. Wit flows from passion for the subject.
  • Wit is all about overturning expectations. The wit is in the surprise.
  • To be witty, take the subject, but not yourself, seriously.  Wit begins with yourself, with self-deprecation.
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Productivity requires continuous output, while creativity is a non-linear, messy, disjointed process that needs to be unstructured.

We have decades of exposure to historical and cultural beliefs on how work should be and what it means to be successful, so it is hard for us to understand creativity.

Ignite The Fire

To be creative, we have let our brains loose. The mind needs rest and time every day to daydream, imagine and get intentionally bored. Letting our minds free is an incredibly important cognitive exercise.

Take the time to expose yourself in diverse subjects, things that inspire you and dissolve boundaries can foster creativity. Identify and let go of wrong beliefs and outdated stories you tell yourself every day.

Habits You Should Track

Factors to consider when choosing a new habit to track:

  • Motivation: choose a habit you personally care about. If you pick a habit out of a sense of obligation, your motivation wil...
Tackle One Behavior At a Time

You can’t fully focus on any behavior if you try to establish several at once. 

Doing so risks overloading your willpower and your habits may end up competing for priority.

“Stack” Your Habits

The best way to turn a behavior into a habit is to use a trigger to remind yourself to do it. Your trigger needs to be something you always do anyway. Anything you already do without thinking works.

As you build new habits, you create new triggers for yourself and stack a new habit onto it. Each existing habit acts as a trigger to remind you to complete the next one until it becomes natural to do both together. 

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Convey genuine appreciation

Actively project warmth and high energy. People like you when they feel liked by you.

To make it clear you’re interested in the other person, think about what they know that you don...

Listen with intent

Being a good listener is about two things: 

  1. Demonstrating that you’ve heard exactly what was said by the other person.
  2. Encouraging them to continue. This breaks down into what’s called “backchanneling” — offering short, enthusiastic responses as the other person talks (i.e. “yeah” “mm-hmm” “totally” “I can see that”), and asking follow up questions that reference the information you were just given.
Use humility markers

Acknowledging your own fallibility and human imperfection can go a long way toward making yourself relatable. Especially if there’s a power dynamic where someone is asking for your advice, attention or help, you want to put the other person at ease.

Taking the time to call or meet in person also expresses humility.

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Being a powerful communicator

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Moving toward or away

Observe if those you’re speaking to are moving toward or away, by asking what that person wants.

If they start listing things they don’t want (they don’t want to fail, they don’t want to be stuck in the same dead-end job) or talking about what they do want  (a family, to succeed at their job) then you’ll know how to direct the conversation.

Internal and external frames of reference
  • When trying to communicate effectively with someone who has an internal frame of reference, appeal to the things they know about themselves. Tie your communication to a personal fact you already know about that person.
  • Those with an external frame of reference want to hear more about what their peers thought about a given program or decision.

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