3 Strategies To Manage Your Mind Chatter So You Feel Composed

Keep your emotions in check at your next meeting!

Do you know how you’ve been dreading that conversation that is coming up?

It’s not because of the agenda or the other person that you’d rather avoid.

That’s what Sonya thought when she called me for her coaching call

My clients are often dreading an upcoming conversation

Sonya was NOT looking forward to an upcoming meeting with her boss!

  • She fully suspected he was going to tell her about a staff complaint against her.

Sonya thought the reason she was dreading it was because

  1. The agenda — her performance was going to be addressed
  2. Her boss and the employee — The employee didn’t like her. Sonya suspected her boss wasn’t all that enthusiastic about her skills either.

I heard a deeper message

As she reiterated the events leading up to today, and I read between the lines, I heard Sonya’s unconscious thoughts:

  • It’s not going to go well.
  • And I heard: I can’t handle confrontation
  • My boss has never liked me.
  • And I heard: I’m not cut out for this job
  • When I reflected that back to Sonya, she was surprised, but agreed.

The insights often surprise my clients
Sonya said:

  • You’re right. I don’t believe I’m very good at confrontation. I hate it, Always have.
  • And, I took this job with a promise I’d get more leadership training, and that’s never happened. I always feel like I’m floundering. I don’t know how to get my staff to do what they are supposed to be doing.

As a result, Sonya felt that every day was a struggle. She was tired and tired of being tired. Part of her just wanted out.

I help my ladies (that’s what I call my clients) access that deeper message

As I coached Sonya through the Inner Guidance Cycle (IGC) of pause, ponder pivot and proceed, she accessed her inner wisdom. She realized how often her unconscious thoughts were sabotaging her efforts as much as, if not more so, than the day to day work.

My ladies learn to manage their mind chatter so they feel composed

Over time, I taught Sonya to use the IGC consistently to learn to manage her mind chatter. In doing so, she learned to manage her emotions. And you know what that does; It gave her increased emotional intelligence and composure!

  • I bet you are looking for increased composure also!

It’s time for you to learn this too!

Over the next few weeks, I’m going to dive deeper into the IGC so you can use it to manage your thoughts. For now, let me give you a few pointers about mind chatter.

M I N D 🤔C H A T T E R
3 things you need to know for more success

Thoughts. A voice in your head. Monkey brain.

We call it many things, but it’s all the same. Mind chatter is the conversation or monologue we are having with ourselves inside our heads.

What you need to know about that mind chatter is this:

  • it’s there,
  • it rules your life and
  • you can manage it.
  1. MIND CHATTER is there:
    We all have thoughts; the majority of them are unconscious. It is the thoughts we are oblivious to, which often leads to experiencing our lives in ways we don’t want.
  • For example, many of us don’t realize that via our inner thoughts, we have been convincing ourselves that we can’t handle our overwhelming responsibilities, appointments, and to do’s.

If you stopped and paid attention to your thoughts, you might hear your mind repeating similar phrases like a broken record:

  • I’m never going to make it through this day.
  • I have way too much to do.
  • I’ll never get done this.
  • There is no way I can handle this.
  • I’ll be lucky to get through half of this.

The thoughts we have been automatically thinking have been inducing the sense we have of pressure, strain, and anxiety.

What’s more, the self-sabotaging remarks we think, wreak havoc on our confidence. The constant onslaught of judgments that reel through our mind does more to challenge our confidence than what other people actually utter.

2) MIND CHATTER rules your life:
What you think about creates your experience of life. Or…what you expect, you get.

  • It is those unconscious expectations that you are setting for yourself that make you feel the way you do.

In the example above, your unconscious thoughts of overwhelm gave you the experience of feeling incompetent in handling your day.

  • When you have those repeating thoughts in your mind that are reminding you that you can’t handle it, you create your sense of overwhelm.

That draws your attention to notice everything that goes wrong, every second “stolen” from you and each extra task added to your list.

3) You can manage your MIND CHATTER:
When you become more aware of your thoughts, you can choose what you are thinking. Those different thoughts shift your experience.

Once more, using the example above, you could begin to manage your thoughts about your day. Instead of the catastrophic thoughts that you have about your overwhelming day, you can catch yourself going down that path and turn a different way.

By choosing instead to think about your ability to handle things and to be alert for opportunities, you change your experience.

  • I can handle my day.
  • I am good at prioritizing.
  • I will set a manageable list of what I can accomplish today.
  • I will look for tiny moments of time found throughout the day.
  • Even though it feels awkward, I will set boundaries with my team creating pockets of deep work time.

When you become more conscious of your inner thoughts and then shift them, you also find you experience your day differently.
You didn’t necessarily change anything going on outside of you. Instead, you shifted your thought about what was going on outside of you.

  • ✅The tasks, meetings, and duties are still there; they just have less power over you.

Shifting your mind chatter leaves you feeling more in control and on top of the priority projects, not everything, but you know that it’s the real priorities that matter at the end of the day.

The tools for managing your thoughts:

1) Breathing

  • Take a deep breath. That will bring you back to the present moment and more aware of what you are thinking. Find help with this here

2) Meditation

  • The practise of sitting still for a few moments a day trains your brain to be less automatic and racing. Instead, you cultivate a sense of groundedness. Practicing the skill of not reacting to every impulse that jumps out at you lets you be less reactive and more responsive throughout your day.

3) Journaling

  • By taking a few movements each day to journal your thoughts, you become more aware of irrational beliefs, unhelpful views and thought patterns.

Watch this video to learn to change your mind chatter

Developing an awareness of your mind chatter helps you to manage it

When you manage your thoughts, you manage your life. It is by handling your inner world that you create the experience in the outer world that you desire.

Make sure to come back next week to learn how to use the Inner Guidance Cycle to manage your thoughts and thus manage your emotions. Doing so will make you feel more competent and in control. Therefore, you’ll be leading with composure and confidence!

You’ve got this, my dear! One step at a time!

Remember, what you need to know about that mind chatter is this: it’s there, it rules your life, and you can manage it.

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Kathy Archer

Kathy Archer

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Helping women leaders make it in the nonprofit world. Leadership Development Coach * Best-Selling Author * Wife * Mom * Grandma * Mom to one boxer named Zeus!