Stories That We Tell Ourselves

September 17, 2020

a grey square with a white thought bubble in the top right corner

How we speak to ourselves impacts every part of our day.

In 2005, the National Science Foundation published an article that found that the average person has about 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day. Of those, 80% were negative and 95% were exactly the same repetitive thoughts as the day before.

When I think of the old me, I think that this statistics sums up exactly how I was feeling.

Most recently, I used a self-care tip as an example to ask caregivers what story in their head was around the word ‘exercise’. Did they automatically associate exercise with going to the gym or going for a run? How would they feel if they replaced the word ‘exercise’ with ‘moving their body’?

Does simply changing words change the story in their head?

This is a simple example that I like to use because it’s relatable to all.

Other examples for caregivers include:

advocacy - the story that we need to advocate, protest everything

education - the story that we need to educate everyone about the disease, rare disease, diagnosis that our loved one has/received

caregiver role - the story that everyone else has their shit together except you

Personally, the larger my bandwidth (ie. being well rested, having patience, feeling good) at the moment, the more positive my thoughts are; and conversely, the smaller my bandwidth, the more negative my thoughts are.

Thankfully, there is good news. We can slowly move the marker from mostly negative thoughts to fewer negative thoughts.

The goal is to take a few seconds throughout the day and check in with your thoughts. When I first started to do that I was surprised at how negative the stories in my head actually were.

I thought that I would never talk to anyone in the same manner in which I talked to myself. I decided that I had to start talking to myself in the same manner that I would talk to my best friend and loved ones.

This is simple a muscle that we need to build and strengthen.

I encourage you all to start checking in on your own thoughts. I see you. You are doing amazing work behind closed doors. Be kinder to yourself. You are worth it.





Leave a comment


Also in News

A photo of my daughter standing at a splash pad where her black hair is wet and she has water drops on her face. She's wearing a thinly-striped top that is wet. The stripes are red, navy, lime green and white.
Groundhog Day 2021

July 17, 2021

I am grateful that I get to spend this time with her and her brother. I will honour this time of a more relaxed schedule.

View full article →

Guide post with four arrows - top one pointing left with the word help; next one pointing right with the word support; underneath one pointing left with the word advice and the bottom one pointing right with the word guidance.
What Can Paid Caregivers Help You With?

June 19, 2021

Whichever route a family chooses, what matters is knowing when to ask for help and how to get the right help to care for any family member that needs an additional helping hand. 

View full article →

The author standing with her daughter and son at a disc golf basket. They're standing on grass and there are trees in the background and the sky is blue.
What My Journey Has Taught Me

June 06, 2021

On this once unimaginable path, I’ve unearthed many gifts. The most profound being that my happiness was non-negotiable.

View full article →

Sign up to receive my weekly blog, recipes and to learn more about upcoming retreats & courses.