I’ve often met so many seemingly confident women who, on the surface, appear confident, bold, strong, outspoken, successful.

Yet, delve underneath that seemingly strong exterior during one of my coaching sessions only to be confronted with a mind that may be plagued with unhelpful mind-chatter, niggling self-doubts and critical internal dialogue to varying degrees.

This seems to be inherent in female culture. It’s not that men don’t experience this. It could just be that they are better at hiding it. Or their belief of what it means to be a male (not necessarily sharing and being open about feelings) means that they may be reluctant to admit it to themselves let alone anyone else.

Very often, this negative self-chatter has roots somewhere in childhood that we then internalise without even realising it. From the time we are born, we are bombarded with other peoples’ beliefs, attitudes, values and behaviours.

This is through our family, parents, siblings, extended family, friends, teachers, the media, culture, religion, geographical location.

In this day and age, we have the bonuses – and the perils- of the availability of the internet and social media at our finger tips. We are bombarded daily by images and videos from the media on how women ‘should’ look and behave. Certainly for girls and young women growing up who are highly impressionable and vulnerable, there is a pressure to conform. (This is also true for boys and young men but this article is geared towards women).

Any element of negative chit-chatter which can start in children stemming perhaps from hearing early criticisms or pressure to look or be a certain way, it’s no wonder that there is so much harsh self-dialogue that can go on in women’s minds. When you mix that together with the pressures of modern adult life, work, responsibilities, financial worries, children, relationships, then it can cause that unhelpful self-chatter to increase and drown out your true inner voice which is brimming with intuition, wisdom, joy, compassion.

Imagine the stillness of a lake. Tranquil. Serene. Peaceful. Clear. Empowered.

That is the true essence of you.

When the mind becomes still, you tap into those feelings. The true essence of you. The innocence you had as a child when you didn’t over-think things and analyse things to death. You cried then got over it then moved on. Somehow, as adults, we’ve got so ‘into our heads’ and away from our hearts, blaming life circumstances for getting in the way.

Feelings of inner peace, tranquility, serenity, joy, true love, empowerment and self-kindness are already there. You have just been tainted by a lifetime of other peoples’ beliefs, attitudes, values and behaviours and forgotten your true self.

Just stop.

Notice yourself.

Remember who you were in the first place.

Food for thought.

*(Credits: Photo by Pok Rie from Pexels)