Research suggests that the average person has about 50,000 thoughts per day. Each thought can trigger a chemical reaction in your body, creating a strong correlation between what you think and how you feel.
Of all the thoughts we have, those that are most influential are the ones we create ourselves. We each have an internal voice that sends us messages, day in and day out, affecting our perception of things. Our thoughts "talk" to us, often distorting the truth about ourselves and the situations we find ourselves in. Examples of negative self-talk are, I always mess up; I'm not good at this; I don't fit in; Everyone's out to get me, and so forth. Negative self-talk can be debilitating and send you into a downward emotional spiral.
Learn to recognize and take control of your negative self-talk. Pay attention to thoughts that produce strong negative emotion. Challenge the veracity of those thoughts. Are you being categorical ("I always..." "I never..") versus situation-specific? Are you judging yourself too harshly? ("I am an idiot.") Are you playing the blame game? ("They're making me behave this way.")
When you get clear on your negative self-talk, you free yourself to re-program some of the perceptions that could be standing between you and success.