6 More unhelpful things we say to ourselves

Self-talk can be so negative at times! Our inner manager can really drill and wear us down, all because they so desperately want to protect our most vulnerable parts. Here are some more unhelpful things  I have caught myself saying over the years (find the first six here) and my insights into how to flip these around. 

Amy Doyle

Amy Doyle

Holistic Counsellor

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6 More unhelpful things we say to ourselves

We all have those niggling little thoughts or phrases we say to ourselves and even aloud! Sometimes they feel like they are on repeat. Let’s bust through their limitations together. 

"I don't care"

Guilty! I’ve said this before… and it turns out… I did care. I cared so deeply it hurt to admit it. ⁠It takes courage and practice: ⁠

  • to stay in the moment ⁠
  • to breathe⁠
  • to gather ourselves and bring our nervous system back online⁠
  • to be vulnerable and communicate our feelings and needs. ⁠

What about you? Have you thrown this one about? ⁠Did you truly not care? And if not, how could you have shown up as more available for the other in that moment? Or communicated your needs more effectively? For example, “I appreciate you considering my opinion. It’d make my day if you took the lead on this one so I can focus on my studies.”⁠

If you did care, what did you need in that moment? To matter? To be considered? To contribute?

"It's never enough"

Ooh yes… I’ve felt this one.⁠ Like everything I do is never enough… also that it will never be enough.  Whether the statement is about myself, my future, my partner, my actions, someone else’s actions, money, business, development, study… the list can go on. ⁠

So many ways we can flip this statement until we find a truer statement for the moment that brings peace into our thoughts:⁠

  1. It’s always enough. Who are we to say that life is wrong? That the restriction of resources is not right for us? That perhaps it is leading us to gifts beyond what we imagine is possible in this moment. Moving to the belief that we have all that we need within us. Moving into alignment with trust and faith to keep going because just being who we are is enough. ⁠
  2. It’s enough in this moment⁠. Sometimes the above is just too big or too much to grasp. So this one also works for me. It’s believable. That in the moment it’s enough. I have what I need in that moment to get me to the next moment. ⁠
  3. It’s never enough… and maybe it never will be enough…because life is always expanding, evolving… and to know that there is always more to come… ⁠That there will always be moments where I feel it’s never enough is something that I need to get comfortable with. But it doesn’t have to diminish me or make me feel like I’m doing it wrong. ⁠

⁠Do you ever feel this way? How do you flip the statement to find that sense of peace within?

"You don't have time or space for me"

Ooh this one arrived hot and heavy! ⁠This one arises for me when I’m not giving myself the time and space for me and my needs. ⁠My outer world reflects this back to me with other people being busy, connection routines and rituals falling to the wayside...⁠

If I lose myself in the moment it takes me back to my teenage years. When I brush it off, I harden, I can become a victim and blame others for not giving me the space and time I desire. ⁠

When I sit with me, my inner teenager and my inner woman I can give myself the time and the space to feel into what’s really there. I can hold space for my needs and fears. And I can also communicate and ask for the support, comfort and connection I am desiring. ⁠

We can flip this a few times until we find the message that is truer:⁠

  • “I don’t have time or space for me”⁠
  • “I don’t have time or space for you”⁠
  • “You do have time and space for me” ⁠⁠

I can see where all these are true and actually more true than the original statement. The last becomes true when I realise how I push the other away to avoid being vulnerable and my fear of being hurt. ⁠

What about you? Do any of these resonate more than the other?⁠

"I just want something right to go my way for a change"

Eek… yep been there! ⁠This one for me pushes away feelings of disappointment, jealousy, envy, even bitterness… what about you?⁠ Let’s do some quick reframes:⁠

  • “Some things are going right for me” – can you find 3 specific examples of where this is true? ⁠
  • “Some things are going right for me for a change” – can you find 3 specific examples of where something was hard and you worked through it?⁠

Okay this next one is a little tougher to swallow… but let’s do it…⁠“I don’t want something right to go my way”⁠ – 

  • What are the benefits of not having this go your way? ⁠
  • Does it keep you playing small? ⁠
  • Do you get to play the victim and avoid self-responsibility?⁠
  • Do you get to avoid feeling your true feelings?⁠

What one of these hit home for you? What one is truer than the original statement and moves you into expansion and growth?⁠

"You are driving me crazy"

Ooh let’s do some wordplay and reframes…⁠ Is it really true “they’ are driving you crazy? Or is it more true that:⁠

  • You are driving you crazy?⁠
  • They are not driving you crazy?⁠
  • You are driving them crazy?⁠

Let yourself really sink into these possibilities. Can you find three specific examples where these other statements are also true? ⁠

I sure can. And the one that hits home the most is number 1 and I dare say my husband and kids might lean more toward #3 at times! When I allow myself to sink into these, the original thought seems to dissolve and I can really see the truth and take some personal responsibility and action. ⁠

How about you? Ever found yourself saying these words?⁠

"I'm a mess"

Ever felt like you’re a mess? What does that even mean?

I know I’ve used these words on more than one occasion – and I would say it meant I felt emotionally overwhelmed and vulnerable and couldn’t contain all those feelings any longer. It was like they were leaking out of me and I didn’t know what to do about it. You could probably even add a dose of embarrassment in there. ⁠So let’s explore it a little:⁠ 

  • What meaning are you giving to “mess”?⁠
  • Is it really true that you are a mess?⁠
  • Where are you not a mess?⁠
  • Why are you being so hard on yourself for being messy? We all have messy parts of our lives. ⁠
  • Messy can also be beautiful – wild and free⁠!

What do you need to know to change this thought or belief I’m a mess?⁠

What other limiting words or phrases do you say?

What are some of the limiting words or phrases you catch yourself saying? Let me know below and we can bust them together. 


Did you create a better understanding of the unhelpful things we say to ourselves?

Did you love this article and now want to know more?

Amy has a list of great articles here on mental and emotional health topics, general wellbeing and self care. With her wealth of experience she can provide you with the insight and knowledge you need to make positive changes in your life.

If you would love to get in contact with Amy, you can get in touch here, or learn more about her and what she does here.

Amy Doyle

Holistic Counsellor

Amy helps her clients move from this idea that they are broken or missing pieces of their own puzzle, to owning their story, claiming back all parts of themselves and merging together as one team to allow them to rest and be in their deepest expression.

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