We recently acquired cable at our house (after three years without, my husband decided he couldn’t go another season without easy access to football). This resulted in a streak of binge watching shows I didn’t even know existed. I was initially surprised (and now obsessed) that so many shows feature children- MasterChef Junior, Chopped Junior, and Project Runway Junior to name a few. I gravitate towards these shows because kids often prove to be so dang capable and confident and that’s just awesome. They have such a simple security in themselves that allows them to support their opponents even in the midst of a competition.

My favorite thing is that these children have such kind “self-talk.” They oftentimes say things like “I am confident that I should win this challenge” or “I really like this dish and am proud of it, regardless if I win.” Ah, such a blessing to be childlike. What if we carried these same self-talk positivities into adulthood? What if we valued ourselves no less than we would value a colleague or friend?

Sometimes, adult self-talk can sound more like this: “I am such an idiot” or “So-and-so is so much better at this than I am, why do I bother?” At the very least this can put us in a funk, or worse, permeate our identity and create a total lack of confidence.

Personally, it is second nature for me to encourage colleagues, friends and my spouse. Affirming their strengths is fun, and it is easy to gently encourage them to grow in their weaker areas when needed. There is no shaming or name-calling. What if we paid the same respect to ourselves? What if we truly loved ourselves? What if (as silly as this sounds), we actually told ourselves “I love you” and spent time speaking encouragement over our lives? Constructive self-talk builds a genuine and organic form of confidence that will attract the positivity in others.

I came across this thought-provoking article that shows how positive self-talk can shape results.

My favorite “tip” they offer to help shift your self-talk from negative to positive is to say your name when you talk to yourself, instead of using “I.” This puts some distance between you and your self-talk habits, where you can be rational and positive about your true capabilities.

I vow to try and up my positive self-talk game this week. I challenge you to join me and share your experience below.