When you say things like,
"I don't think I can do this."
"If only life were different in this way."
"I hate this."
"Everyone always does this."
"I don't want to do this project/work/school."
"I'm not in the mood."
Your brain is taking notes.
That's why it's important to keep an ear on how you talk to yourself.
Keep the cortisol out of your system. Reform positive neural pathways. Watch your words.
We are only now beginning to understand the impact of language in forming cognition (and emotion). Here's a line from an insightful piece on combatting stereotypes:
"It is the form of the sentence, not exactly what it says, that matters to young children."
When my daughter says, "I don't want to go to school today. I don't like school." or "I can't read this book. I can't do it," I always say to her, "Watch out! Your brain is listening!"
"This isn't so bad.."
"I think I can do this."
"There's no such thing as 'if only.' There's only what is."
"I'm not comfortable with this. Might be a good idea to meditate before I do it."
"Sometimes people do this."
"Let's see what happens today in this project/school/work."