“Hmm… What I should have for lunch today? Pasta from that new restaurant around the corner sounds good!” – I said loudly—to no one in particular—when my stomach started making hungry sounds.
This happens on my commute, when I’m out shopping, while I’m planning my free time, and even while I work… Talking to myself helps me crystalize and organize my thoughts.
However, it also makes me feel strange. Only crazy people talk to themselves, don’t they?
I feel especially insecure whenever I articulate my thoughts out loud and get stern looks from others.
Do you talk to yourself, too? Do you do this often – and feel like a bit of a weirdo?
Next time you feel judged—when others look at you like you’re mentally ill—don’t worry. You’re just more intelligent than they are!
Talking with yourself not only soothes loneliness, it also shows that you’re using your brain to its fullest potential. Saying things aloud helps clarify your thoughts and firm up the decisions you make.
Talking to yourself is a habit of highly efficient people
As you can read in the biographies of many outstanding people, talking to yourself is an essential part of the thinking process. Albert Einstein “used to repeat his sentences to himself softly”. Modern psychological researchers have found that talking to yourself out loud is not only normal – it’s a sign of intelligence!
The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology mentions a relevant research project lead by Daniel Swigley and Gary Lupy. They invited 20 people to join their study – and sent them out shopping for certain things. Half of them had to keep quiet; the other half could speak. The task of shopping was easier for those who were encouraged to loudly articulate their shopping lists!
Saying things out loud helps organize your thoughts
When I’m overwhelmed thousands of thoughts, messages from five different communicators on two devices, I often have simply had enough of the professional “multitasking” climate. When I find it difficult to “hear my own thoughts”, I almost automatically say them out loud.
Talking to yourself enables you to organize your thoughts and better understand what you really want. Usually, saying my thoughts out loud helps me calm my nerves and find better solutions to difficult situations.
Talking to Yourself is One of the Best Self-Soothing Methods
Saying your thoughts out loud can help you “blow off steam” after confronting people who make you angry or sad. It helps you understand your thoughts better and connect with your subconscious mind for a richer perspective on your life.
As we struggle with our problems, we feel tempted to “over share” them with others. Even worse than complaining, we often keep our negative feelings to ourselves – which only burns us from the inside. This unresolved inner pain damages our emotional wellbeing and general health.
Why not simply talk through YOUR problems with yourself – before looking for outside solutions? This verbalized “inner dialogue” not only soothes your pain – it can also help you find a good compromise between your wants, needs, and others’ expectations. Talking to yourself is also good practice for getting your points across clearly and calmly. This can put you in a much better position when you need to discuss tough issues with the people in your life.
Talking to Yourself Can Motivate You to Complete Things
We rarely enjoy boring or difficult tasks. You can use positive self-talk to feel better, boost your mood, and simply motivate yourself to do things.
While others may give you a swift kick in the pants as a reminder to clean up your messes and tend to tough tasks, you can motivate yourself in a much kinder voice: “Hey, sweetie (that’s you you’re talking to). You’ve got time this morning to clean the dishes, so how about it?”
Reverse your negative attitude and give yourself positive messages:
“I really feel like going jogging today. The weather is good, I slept well, and a little exercise will do me good.”
With the right self-talk, you can basically “talk yourself into” any activity or habit you desire!
Talking Loud Help You to Perform Better
Verbalizing your thoughts boosts your memory. The researchers call this the production effect. In one study, people memorized a list by reading half of it silently; they said the other half of the list out loud. As you might expect, they remembered words they spoke out loud much better than they read silently. The production effect works because our brains have an initial memory of reading or hearing something – and a second memory of saying it out loud. These richer memories make spoken items more distinct from other thoughts and observations.
If you struggle to find things in your home, remember that saying the location out loud when you set down an object will help you remember where you put it!
People who talk to themselves also have better attention spans and concentration abilities. This helps them better achieve their goals. According to Linda Sapadin, Ph.D. : “Saying [your goals] out loud focuses your attention, reinforces the message, controls your runaway emotions and screens out distractions.”
We “weirdoes” who talk to ourselves are actually using our brainpower more efficiently than other people. Don’t be afraid to listen to your mind and the variety of “voices” it speaks in – whether they’re silent or spoken out loud!