Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day! Everything’s been about LOVE for the past few weeks! The power of love… It got me thinking!
Do you want to know about a practicing super-power that could be a real game changer and that we neglect all the time???
No, it’s not a pill, or a chart, or an app, or a priceless instrument. It’s something YOU ALREADY HAVE!
It’s our own inner voice!
Developing an empowering self-talk is one of THE most effective ways to DRAMATICALLY transform your practice!
I don’t know about you, but I used to say all kinds of rude things to myself when I practiced! Over the years, it got worse and it got to the point where I thought to myself “If this keeps on going, I don’t see the point in continuing to play, because this is no fun at all!” I started to really think about it and decided to make this a part of my doctoral research, and I’m now starting to tap into the incredible power of a healthy inner-dialogue.
Studies show it: harsh self-judgement is detrimental to our practice, our progress and, ultimately, our performance. It causes physical tensions that negatively impact our ease of movement, and psychological tensions that cloud critical thinking and prevent us from devising effective strategies when trying to solve problems in our playing.
Negative self-judgment also keeps us in the past, causing a downward spiral of distraction and self-hatred that continues to affect what we’re doing in the present moment.
Just think how you react when someone starts to be verbally abusive with you. What happens? All sorts of feelings rise in us – unworthiness, defensiveness, anger, frustration, desperation. Very difficult to do our best work when feeling this way!
February being (unofficially) the month of love, I’d like to invite you to tap into the power of self-compassion and develop an empowering inner-dialogue.
Last February, I did a month-long self-compassion challenge. If you’re interested, you can watch the FINAL VIDEO OF THE SERIES, where I gave a summary of the concepts I examined, the things I tried, and my take-aways from focusing on taming self-judgment for a month!
And here are some quick tips to get you started:
Try to catch yourself in the act and notice that harsh self-criticism is happening
When you do catch yourself in judgment, take a breath and go back to the present moment
Find a go-to sentence that calms you down and puts you in a positive mindset
Focus on ASSESSING WHAT IS, instead of judging and attacking your character
Notice the language you’re using and change it to positive, effective words and point of view. E.g. “I’ve missed this several times now. What is the root of the problem here? What is happening?” VS “I’ve missed this so many times! What is wrong with me? I’m such a blablabla!”)
If your inner bully keeps popping in, take a quick break, do something that brings you pleasure, and go back to work when your disposition is objective, positive, and encouraging.
So try all this for size, and tell me how it fits! Get comfortable with objectively assessing your playing and tame your inner bully and its never-ending character assassination!
Much love to you!