Black Belt Thinking | Seven Ways to spot negative self-talk
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Seven Ways to spot negative self-talk

Our self-talk gives a good indication of how we really feel about something or someone.

And the great thing about self-talk is that no-one else can hear it. The bad thing about self-talk? No-one else can hear it! We can get stuck in a rut, unaware of how negative we are being to ourselves.

Black Belts know that the first stage in any process is zanshin, being aware of what is going on. When we become aware, we can address the issue and move forwards.

Here are seven ways to spot negative self-talk:

Red Belt We over-generalise.

Just because something happens once (we drop something) does not mean we are terminally clumsy!

Orange Belt It’s my fault, it’s always my fault.

Someone who isn’t looking bumps into you and you say “Sorry”. Whoa! Stop there. Don’t always blame yourself!

Yellow Belt


Do I think it’s all or nothing for me?

Just because you aren’t good at something doesn’t mean you must be rubbish.

Green Belt


Am I jumping to conclusions?

We can make decisions and judgments based on very little or no evidence. Stop. Analyse what is actually happening.

Purple Belt


Is everything that goes wrong a catastrophe?

Our self-talk can tell us that we have blown something up out of all proportion.

Brown Belt


Am I ignoring the positives?

In most situations there is at least one positive. And if someone gives us praise, let’s take it!

Black Belt


Do I feel I have to?

In many things we have a choice as to what we do. Keep an ear out for words like “should”.

Select one of these right now that you have a tendency to say. In what type of situation do you tend to say it? What word or words can you change? What difference will that make to your confidence and how you feel about yourself?

Choose right now to use more positive self-talk, and you will develop the confidence of a Black Belt.


“To hell with circumstances, I create opportunities.”

Bruce Lee