The Power of Self-Talk
After meeting countless people over the years, I have yet to encounter a single individual who does not possess a very active imagination, which often manifests itself in self-talk in response to problem solving.
If their imagination is at the service of a conscious and purposeful mind, the self-talk can be transformed into creativity and innovation, which are empowering forces in dealing with daily work/life challenges. More frequently, unfortunately, the self-talk is twisted by the old automatic default thinking that invents imaginary often convoluted self-defeating, worst-case scenarios resulting in a resistance to change and missed opportunities.
In a study at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill’s Steven Rogelberg and Colleagues decided to investigate the nature of self-talk among effective and ineffective managers. The authors concluded what a leader says to him/herself does indeed matter “constructive self-talk positively related to effective leadership of others and creativity/originality as evaluated by subordinates and superiors and was negatively related to job strain.” While on the other hand “dysfunctional self-talk related negatively to creativity/originality”.
Alternatively the Rogelberg study found, the more you talk yourself down, second-guess yourself, and see changes as threathening, the less free your mind will be to roam through creative solutions of the problems that you face. You may even stop trying because the self-talk tells you that you are going about things all wrong and will undoubtedly fail. How can you possibly try anything new or different when you know that you will do something wrong?
Competitive Advantage For Leaders
According to the Small Business Administration, more than 82 percent of Entrepreneurs either quit or fail within 36 months. Reason? Is more about how you talk to yourself than just about anything else. It’s about how you manage the little voices in your head, your emotions… Blair Singer writes in Entrpreneur.Com
Self-awareness, the ability to observe our self-talk and manage our inner-critic, is an important competitive advantage for leaders. In today’s volatile and unpredictable business climate riddled with change, the more aware you are as a leader and the better you can manage your self-talk and emotions the more creative, resourceful and agile you will become in succeeding these opportunities.
To successfully manage self-talk, you need to develop self-observation and curiosity, in order to dispassionately watch the self-talk as it arises without wanting to make it bad or vilify yourself. This takes practice and patience but it is worth the investment as you attain freedom, creativity and develop the clear sense of purpose and direction required of a leader.
When being beset by self-talk or mental chatter, the most important realization is that “I am not this voice. This is the imaginative mind reactivated.” Understanding that you can choose what you wish to hear is liberating. This is where your inner-leadership abilities are formed. Instead of choosing to sink into self-doubt and follow the inner-critic, you come to realize you have the freedom to choose from many different possibilities that are more intelligent and progressive. This inner-leadership and self-mastry then manifests itself in the outer actions and behaviors of the leader. Through awareness and managing the active imagination, your conscious and purposeful mind, empowers you to be a more effective leader.
Emotional Intelligence & Self-Reflective Workshop Series
Businesses in today’s highly competitive markets rise and fall on the strength of their leadership decisions. Mastering the practices of Self-Reflection and Emotional Intelligence will improve your leadership abilities and success at whatever level you are in your career.
Do you find your self-talk getting in the way of making decisions? Are you convinced you need a turnaround to make your mind an ally? Join me for my workshop to build the crucial leadership qualities of Self-Awareness, Self-Managment and Emotional Intelligence to help make you an even more effective leader. Some of the topics we cover includes:
1. Learn how to recognise and manage your self-talk.
2. Learn how to work with strong emotions rather than being worked up by them.
3. How to increase engagement and collaboration with stakeholders
Click the link in below for more details: