Everything Is A Negotiation.


If there is a desire to make changes in your life, you have to negotiate with yourself. You have to decide what you want, and then determine whether or not what it takes to get what you want is worth the pursuit.

Courtesy of Soulful

Talking To Yourself.

Do you talk to yourself? If you misplace your glasses, do you ask yourself, out loud, “Where did I put my glasses?” Outside of some acute to severe mental illness, talking to yourself is a form of negotiation.

When you are talking out loud to yourself, you are essentially thinking out loud, because talking is a form of thinking. It’s the reason therapists have the client do all the talking. The client is negotiating with something that happened in the past, for example, and reconciling his or her present thoughts and feelings to that event.

Often enough, the client knows what he or she needs to do, and the therapist provides that unbiased and uninhibited space for the client to talk (think) out the problem.

Am I?

When working with people that emotionally eat, it is a good practice to instruct them to ask themselves, out loud if necessary, “Am I hungry, or am I just __________?” Asking this out loud allows the person to hear themselves ask it, process it, and formulate an answer. This differs from asking it silently. Different systems engage, and the question is processed differently when asked out loud.

This is why therapists have clients do all the talking.

Fill In The Blank.

If an emotional eater can fill in the blank with an emotion, it is also a good practice to stay in that emotion, rather than eat it. Finding another outlet for that emotion eventually follows, but learning to sit with the emotion for a moment is a crucial step. Experiencing the emotion is ultimately the only way to truly recognize it. If the blank is easily filled in with an emotion, the hunger is probably not actually hunger.

This is a form of negotiation; exploring a problem and working out a solution.

Making Changes.

If there is a desire to make changes in your life, you have to negotiate with yourself. You have to decide what you want, and then determine whether or not what it takes to get what you want is worth the pursuit.

If you do not negotiate with yourself, you are not thinking. And if you are not thinking, you risk becoming your own tyrant, lording over yourself with unclear rules and uncertain consequences.

A Process.

Thinking out loud does not have to be arbitrary. In fact, it should be directed and focused. When setting goals for your life, the goals are best set with the intention of having a specific and articulated outcome. An inarticulate vision for the future will produce an inarticulate version of the present.

A vision of becoming a doctor will remain inarticulate unless it is supported by a goal of going to college. In this sense, the present is negotiating with the future; sacrifices are being made now for the later. This is a process, and it takes time. As it happens, negotiation is not always a quick and straightforward process.

So, do not be afraid to talk to yourself, and ask yourself what you really want. But give yourself the time and the space to have that conversation.

It’s the reason a therapist has the client do all the talking.