If you wouldn’t say it to a friend, don’t say it to yourself.

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This tip is part of building up positive self-talk and looking at our thoughts, particularly the negative thoughts that often come to us. There are many quotes and pieces of advice “to be our own best friend”. And this would be amazing, we’d comfort ourselves when we were upset, encourage us when we were tired, support ourselves when we were anxious, listen without judgement when we were angry, etc etc. But we often don’t seem to manage these things for ourselves. And it definitely seems to be easier said than done. A step towards being our own best friend is to at least stop and listen to what we say to ourselves. And if it is so harsh or nasty or negative that we wouldn’t say it to a friend then we need to stop saying it to ourselves. So if we can’t be our own best friend all of the time, we can at least try and treat ourselves as well as we do our actual best friends.

What You'll Need

  • Nothing but you’ll need to practice and keep doing it so it becomes a habit, and eventually the harsh thoughts and comments are replaced with kinder, gentler ones.

What You'll Do

  • Simply notice what you think or say to yourself about yourself.
  • When you spot something nasty or derogatory simply say inside your head “stop”.
  • You could even respond (silently) with what you’d say if your friend has just said that about themselves.
  • For example, if your friend was calling themselves “stupid and ugly” would you let them carry on saying this?
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