Most people are of the opinion that talking to oneself is a sign of old-age related senility or mental illness. They have this opinion despite the fact that almost everyone talks to themselves. I think talking to myself is perfectly normal. The experts have confirmed my opinon.

Neurological experts assert that by talking to yourself, a person can better organize all of their thoughts. Rather than have a mind overwhelmed with a plethora of ideas that are disconnected, verbalizing thoughts helps to categorize them, arrange them in a logical order and reason with ourselves to exclude the ones that are just not going to work out. The result is better clarity of mind.

Another result of saying aloud what we are thinking is that we are more likely to remember the thought. Reinforcing a thought by speaking it helps the brain memorize the idea and recall it later.

Talking to yourself also helps you focus. Try an experiment if you doubt this. Go to a market you are unfamiliar with. Select an item to shop for and time how long it takes to find it without talking to yourself. Go to another market you are unfamiliar with and search for the same item but talk to yourself this time, repeating the name of the item you are searching for. Researchers claim that you will find it faster when you talk to yourself throughout the search process. So, people who have chats with themselves are more focused and able to achieve their goals more efficiently.

Self-talk is also a way to calm the mind and enhance the attention span. If you are easily distracted or have a case of the jitters, engage in a singular conversation with self. The brain responds by enhancing the body’s control over cognitive, emotional and decision-making functions.

For people who suffer with anxiety related issues or even anger management issues, talking to yourself is a way to re-train your emotional responses. Don’t just have rambling conversations with yourself “in the moment”. Rather, create meaningful “scripts” using specific words that cue a designated behavior or response. Over time, like Pavlov’s dog, your emotional responses will be re-conditioned to react accordingly.

For creative minds, talking to yourself is often an integral part of the creative process. Often a poem or a song begins with a feeling, an emotion or unction that is felt and seems almost impossible to put into words. Perhaps a fictional novelist has a vague mental picture of a setting or character. By talking yourself through the process of what is swirling around the mind, you can materialize what has been just out your mental grasp. It can then be put into words, pen to paper.

Psychologists hypothesize that this works because saying something aloud makes it become real and tangible. This helps with memorization and creative development and appropriate physical/emotional response to verbal cues. By saying it, your brain begins to visualize the properties of what is spoken and the body reacts accordingly.

This is widely seen in children as they begin to learn tasks. A child learning to tie a shoe speaks through the process, one step at a time: “Make a bunny ear, go around, then through, and ears are two, with a tug and I’m through.” That’s what I was taught.

And if loved ones make fun of you for a newfound boldness and openness in talking to yourself, a few facts may put them in their place! Talking to yourself is a habit practiced by those of genius. It is widely known among Albert Einstein fans that he often repeated, in a soft voice, sentences to himself. Assure them that you are in good company and by no means “crazy”.

 

Written by Gemma