Combat that Negative Self-Talk!

Everyone experiences negative self-talk both in their personal lives and their work lives. It includes those little voices telling you to skip the gym class you booked, telling you that you are not good enough, not smart enough, tempting you to go through the fast-food drive thru at lunchtime; or the voice saying you don’t know what you’re doing in your business. This voice is likely to tempt you to lie on the couch watching your favorite show instead of taking action on something that would be beneficial to you or your business. When a client gets testy, that voice is cheering and causing you to doubt yourself.

Studies show that being insightful and self-aware is a reality check, but constantly putting ourselves down and continual negative self-talk has severe implications on us.

We all have an annoying inner voice. I don’t care how much personal development work you’ve done or how many personal development books you have read. You will always have this voice hanging around, feeding off you like a parasite. It can affect our emotions and well – being along with potential accomplishments.

You CANNOT allow this annoying voice to rule your life as you will miss out on EVERYTHING. It acts as a defense mechanism.

By allowing it to control you, what happens is you block your greatness. Negative self – talk keeps you stuck in jobs you hate, traps you in unhealthy relationships, stops you starting your dream business and keeps you from earning what you deserve.

Is there a way out?

You bet there is.

Instead of giving in to this annoying voice, here are some ways to eliminate it from your mind. Turning a negative into a positive is always a good exercise in life.

I have helped hundreds of clients end the internal war with themselves around and feel at peace within. I’ve simplified this long process into three steps, but to be honest: please don’t think this is the end-all be-all answer to your annoying voice as it is relentless, persistent and here to stay.

This is just a start! So, here we go, onto the steps:

Step 1: Get to know your inner voice intimately!

If you’re going to change the way you speak to yourself, you need to have a constant heightened awareness to catch yourself all the time. I suggest you take a notepad and ask yourself; Where do you berate yourself the most? ( not speaking up/ achievement/decisions/ looks/body/choices). What does this annoying voice say to you?

Journal, write daily for at least 15 minutes, free flow, no editing. Set aside the time to really dive deep. Self –awareness is only half the battle here; that’s why I want you and your annoying voice to get really close, become intimate, it is CRUCIAL you embrace it, welcome it, learn how to manage it and learn a new way of being.

Step 2: Uncover the hidden beliefs inside your annoying voice.

So now you know what your annoying voice keeps banging on about. Take a look at these statements and pull out your limiting beliefs.

What you might your annoying voice say to you about how many times you shame or berate yourself around your self –sabotage? Well perhaps at times you have felt pleased with how your day has gone but what does your annoying voice make it mean about you?  That you have failed again? That the devil will always live on your shoulder? That you will never earn the money you dream of earning? That you will never be a good enough writer to write a book? That you will never hit your goals, so why bother?

Perhaps your annoying voice urges you to compare and despair and you feel you will never overcome this? Perhaps you feel that others have it all sorted and you don’t.  What are these limiting beliefs that are hidden deep down?  Do you feel you don’t deserve success, happiness, a relationship or you are not worthy of feeling good about how you feel, how you live your life?

I see this with so many of my clients. Many like you who are strong, powerful, warm, and lovely, yet deep down they don’t feel they are good enough. You are NOT alone.

Step 3: Challenge those beliefs

No one is super happy and super positive all day long. Changing your limiting beliefs and feeling good about yourself is a life long journey.  Your job is to make it a daily priority to challenge the annoying voice. Your limiting beliefs are not based on fact, they have been created somewhere along the way.  The reality is based on what you totally believe to be true about yourself without buying into anyone else’s opinions, and always remembering, just that, they are opinions and not facts.  NOT feeling good enough is what keeps us stuck in self sabotage and often ending up resentful deep down.

That is a wall we build around ourselves which confines us and keeps us from being authentic.   

Lets recap… Become aware of your annoying voice and how many times a day it flags up your shortcomings, list out your beliefs, look at them. Challenge them, be uncomfortable, get real and be honest.

Ask yourself;

What if this belief is fabricated by my annoying voice and it isn’t actually true.

If it isn’t true, how would I show up in my life? What would I do differently?

What choices, decisions and actions would I make and take?

How do I react when I believe that thought?

Do I feel peaceful or stressful when I have that thought?

Do any cravings, compulsions or food thoughts appear when you believe that thought? Do you overeat, drink copious amounts of alcohol, graze, restrict, deflect, zone out to TV? Do you beat yourself up? Do you speak down about yourself in front of others, almost inviting them to join in and belittle you? Do you suffer from comparison fatigue?

How do you treat yourself when you believe this thought?

How do you treat other people around you?

Who would you be without that thought?

Find two specific examples and re-frame them.

E.G – I don’t feel valued when someone speaks over me, at me or ignores me.

Reframe; My every word is valued and heard.

I would love to hear from you. Do you suffer from an annoying voice telling you constant lies? If so, are you committed to overcoming it this year? Get specific.

Share as much detail as you can. Your story may give someone else a fresh perspective on things. Excited to hear your thoughts.

You deserve to live the life you dream of. These three steps will help you to start combating that annoying voice.


I’m Annie Ashdown, Author, Success Coach, Speaker and Cognitive Hypnotherapist based in London. I write about everything I’ve done wrong as a woman personally and professionally whilst out there in the trenches.

I work with high achievers who want to conquer imposter syndrome, crush self -doubt, and de-escalate anxiety. I help them knock down the wall that’s causing them frustration and standing between them and their next level of success so they can get closer to the dream life they’ve set their sights on.

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  • Annie Ashdown

    Author, Speaker, Success Coach, Clinical Hypnotherapist

    For the past 20 years Annie Ashdown has thrived as success coach, clinical hypnotherapist and keynote speaker, helping some of the world’s leading businesses, high achieving individuals and A-list celebrities reach levels of success they only dreamt were possible. She is a published author and UK's go to media expert. Her book The Confidence Factor, The Seven Secrets of Successful has been translated into six languages and she appears as an expert in Psychologies Magazine’s Real Confidence: Stop Feeling Small and Start Being Brave. Annie helps impact people's lives by giving them the success tools that tap into their full potential and go to the next level whilst learning how to balance it all. Clients include AMEX, Yahoo, Soho House Group, Boots, Coutts, ITV, BBC, BNParibas, Chelsea Football Club, Nokia, Vertu, Waterstones amongst others.