On a daily basis, most of us engage in internal monologues. It begins when we wake up each day, and our brain inadvertently asks, ‘Do I need to get up now?’, ‘What do I need to wear today?’, ‘Why do I do this to myself?’, ‘I probably shouldn’t talk about this,’ and so on. Simply put, an internal monologue is a phenomenon in which you talk to yourself in your head. It is also referred to as “the voice inside your head” or “the inner voice.”
According to a 2011 study, talking to oneself improves cognitive recollection and helps one remember things better. The University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers investigated this link by asking 20 people to go shopping in a supermarket, giving them the name of an object and asking them to find it. In the first round, the participants remained silent. In the next one, however, they repeated the name aloud, as if they were speaking to themselves while searching for the object. The people had an easier time finding the apples and oranges. Words were a powerful retrieval cue in helping people materialize the end goal and even make sense of it, the study concluded.
According to theories, Einstein was guilty of self-talk: he used to softly repeat his sentences to himself, which sometimes led people mistaking him for a mad scientist. Self-talk can be concerning if it becomes compulsively frequent and manifests as a hallucination. Talking out loud can help, as long as we’re in control and aware of what we’re doing.
In Fleabag, Pheobe Waller Bridge’s character frequently has internal monologues in which she loses herself to her thoughts while amusingly navigating situations and conversations around her. Many other fictional characters are shown giving themselves a pep talk or simply discussing an event with themselves. According to one theory, people who spend more time alone are more likely to talk to themselves. Because they interact with others less frequently, their self-talk may function as a form of social communication.
While external self-talk is fairly common, there hasn’t been much research into why some people talk to themselves aloud while others don’t. A 2019 article published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology investigated a couple of new explanations. A 2015 study also looks at how self-talk affects the nature and prevalence of communication anxiety and public speaking anxiety.
Positive self-talk, negative self-talk, motivational self-talk, and instructional self-talk are all examples of self-talk.
Talking to yourself is completely normal and healthy. A self-talk is an effective tool for improving mental health and cognitive function. Using appropriate or positive self-talk can assist you in motivating yourself. Because it helps you focus on each step, explain processes to yourself aloud and ask questions, it can help you better see solutions and work through problems. A little positive self-talk can do wonders for your motivation when you’re stuck or otherwise challenged.
Saying is mostly wanting to believe. This is a particularly useful premise for improving overall health and well-being. It is not a far-fetched idea that talking to oneself out loud may help you feel better and less stressed than usual — because it gives a tangible form to the problems at hand and helps in addressing them.