139: Soundtracks & Self-Talk

Sorry to be negative, but if this first try of the “deep focus segment at the beginning” format is the model, then I’m not a fan. My hunch is you need to get warmed up by discussing your episode topic for that segment to be added value for geeks. Friends chit-chatting about family gift giving strategies and decoration timing before starting the podcast is nice, but not really “deep focus.”

This was an excellent episode! I listened yesterday while exercising and my brain has worked on it all night. This has been the most thought-provoking episode I’ve listened to.

It has raised more questions than answers, and that’s a good thing. Is all “negative self talk” necessarily bad, and need to be silenced? What if it’s true? And even though it might come across in an “unkind” manner, doesn’t it still need to be listened to sometimes? What about our conscience condemning us when maybe our behavior deserves some negative self talk?

I understand the point about surrounding yourself with positive people and inputs. I stopped watching the news 20 years ago for that reason. But don’t we all also need people in our lives who will have the courage to make us aware when we’re acting irresponsibly or like an asshole and aren’t aware of it? Sometimes we’re not nice people and not doing the right thing all the time.

Is negative always “bad,” and positive always “good?” That seemed to be an underlying assumption of much of the discussion.

The replacement positive self-talk of “Everything is always working out for me” is, to me, a denial of reality. My experience is that everything doesn’t always work out for me (or other people), in the sense that it’s a beneficial or positive result. To me this phrase exemplifies all that is wrong with the typical pop-culture positive self-talk cult.

If my spouse of almost 50 years, my best friend and lover, were to become ill and die this year, I would not consider that, “everything is always working out for me.” I would consider it a huge negative, awful, bad thing that happened in my life. I believe that bad things do happen, and no amount of spinning it to see the positives changes that.

Thank you for a great episode.