During my college days, I was introduced to a music group named Whodini. They had a hit called “Last Night” and it talked about the performer having a long talk with himself. It was a fun jam so please drop me a note if you remember the song. Even today I still like their music!

There are a ton of jokes out there about people who talk to themselves out loud. Comments like, “If you’re talking to yourself and you start to answer, you may want to get some help.” Those in favor of talking to themselves might say something like, “I can’t help it. It’s the only intelligent conversation available around here!” Do a quick search on the web and you’ll see that there are some health benefits to talking to yourself if you do it the right way. Let me give you an example.

I was golfing recently and since I believe that sports are like life in fast motion, I thought I’d share a story with you. First of all, I had a golf coach tell me something several years ago, and yes, it’s you Andy in case you get a chance to read this. I had just said something like, “Alright, now I don’t want to put this shot into the sand bunker” to which he felt the need to step in to provide some guidance. You see, what I said sounded to him like eating a chilidog at 1:00 am…it just didn’t sit right. Andy told me to speak to and focus on the positive outcome not the negative. From the bunker example, he said “I’m going to put this shot onto the green just beyond the bunker.” Now I will admit, I didn’t fully buy into and learn that lesson immediately, but somewhere in between then and now, I really bought into it, and I use that process daily. Back to my recent golf outing… The guy I was playing with said, “Great. I’ll probably jack up this short pitch shot now…” Guess what happened? You guessed it. He jacked it up and ended taking a triple bogey on the hole. For those nongolfers, triple bogeys are not good!

What can you do to put this underutilized skill to work for you? Here are a few places to start.

  • Positive affirmations at the start of your day and throughout…sometimes even before they are deserved
  • Push yourself to find the positive in as many situations as you can
  • Close your eyes and take a few moments to visualize the outcomes that you’re trying to attain
  • Write down some positive affirmations and inspirational quotes in a place that you will see them throughout the day
  • Pray and meditate so you can have that conversation with a higher power

Finally, have some fun with it. Bill Murray played Carl in Caddyshack. There’s a scene where Carl is destroying some flowers as he’s talking to himself as an announcer giving the play by play of him winning the Masters golf tournament. “It’s in the hole!” Dream, visualize, and imagine the great accomplishments that you’d like to achieve. Write down as many details as you can about getting that goal and then start taking steps right now to take action and execute.