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Eliminating Self-Defeating Behavior

             I like my job but I have low self-esteem and I don"t have a lot of confidence in my abilities. I have trouble completing assignments on time, because I always seem to be procrastinating. I have to deal with a ton of unfinished work because I"m always putting my work off until the last minute. I am unhappy with my efforts at work. When I finally do find the time to go out on a date, it seems like work and my failures are all I seem to talk about. I don"t think this is making a good impression. I"m finding it difficult to establish any long term relationship. I bring myself down with all my negative self-talk and I also seem to bring everyone down around me.
             My fear is that I"m not good enough to do the job that other people seem to do so easily. My fear is that no one would ever accept me.
             I have decided to work on my self-esteem by creating a treatment plan that will help me approach life in a more positive light. I have created an outline of the 5 steps of self-talk from the book, "What to say when you talk to yourself" by S. Helmstetter, to help me work on this problem.
             Step 1- "The level of negative acceptance." This everyday self-talk gets in the way of my best intentions. The "I can"t . . " phrases. I am often saying, "I can"t do anything right!" or "I wish I could be as efficient as other's but I just can"t" or "If only I could finish my work on time.".
             Step 2- "Recognition and need to change." This type of self-talk is deceptive. It recognizes a problem but produces no solution. The "I should . . " phrases. I am often saying, "I need to finish my work," or "I ought to get started" or "I should be able to find someone.".
             Step 3- "The decision to change." This is the first type of self-talk that work for me instead of against me. These start with the phrase, "I never . . or I no longer . ." At this time, I rephrase the old negative "I can"t" into a positive way of looking at things.

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