What To Say When You Talk To Yourself Summary, Quotes, And Review

MindsetPersonal DevelopmentPsychology

1-Line Summary: What To Say When You Talk To Yourself by Chad Helmstetter teaches you why all external motivation is temporary and how to use self-talk to make a permanent and significant change.

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What to Say When You Talk to Your Self
  • Helmstetter Ph.D, Shad (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages – 06/20/2017 (Publication Date) – Gallery Books (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-05-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon

About the author

Chad is a bestselling author and has written more than 20 books on personal development in over 70 countries.

Yes, he is pretty popular in the self-help field.

The best thing about him is that he writes in a straightforward language that even a beginner who has never read about personal development could understand.

Learn more about Chad here.

What To Say When You Talk To Yourself Summary (PDF)

In this book summary, I will share the best lessons I’ve learned from this book.

So without wasting any time…

Let’s dive right in!

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Lesson #1: most self-help books don’t work

Have you ever wondered why many people are unsuccessful even though so many books are written on success every year?

Just go to a library, and you’ll find that many books claim to make you successful, yet people keep struggling to achieve even 10% success.

most motivational books don't work

So, what’s the issue here?

Why aren’t those motivational self-help books working?

The author expresses deep concern about this issue.

When he was a kid, he contemplated all the motivational stuff and eventually became a student of “success.”

You may also have read and watched lots of motivational stuff, right?

Are you getting the results that those motivational speakers claimed?

Are you enjoying the success you expected?

Chances are, you are moving from one self-help book to another. And those great ideas are not working at all.

Or are they?

Let’s dive deeper and understand what’s causing the problem.

The author says that all those motivational ideas stay in our heads for a limited time.

What happens then is that we switch back to our old programming.

And those ideas vanish into thin air.

The thing is:

We have been programmed by the external world ever since we were born.

Do you believe it?

Most of our knowledge or information isn’t produced by us. It comes from other people.

Hold on for a moment. And reread the above line.

Good 🙂

Let me make it easy to understand.

Every time you watch a motivational video or listen to a motivational speech, you consume potent ideas.

Which then affects your beliefs and attitude.

We all have a default state of mind. So, whenever there is a change in the state of our minds, we feel different.

When you take in motivational ideas, you feel energetic.

And when you hear failure stories, you feel depressed.

But over time, you switch back to your default state of mind.

Getting the point now?

That’s the reason motivation stays with you for a limited time.

And since you have conditioned your mind to remain in a particular state, it goes back to its default setting.

Then you wonder why those ideas have turned useless.

So, no matter how great an idea is, it will be useless if you are not prepared enough to incubate it or nurture it.

Imagine what you could have achieved if you had the right mindset?

Imagine what you could do if you were conditioned to be your best possible self?

Even right now, you are being programmed.

Even as you read these words, your mind takes in these ideas.

And whether you change for good or not, it’ll depend on your default programming.

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Lesson #2: Change your inner programming to change your life

the inner programmng of our mind

So, what the heck is this “programming”?

Let’s talk more about this.

The author gives a great analogy to explain this.

Compare your brain to a personal computer for a moment.

A personal computer has both hardware and software.

You can touch the hardware. But you can’t feel the software.

Yet, the software is what controls the hardware, right?

The same is with us, humans.

We are controlled by our minds, which act like software.

If we dig deeper, there are many things like attitude, beliefs, attitude, feelings, etc., which affect who we are and what we do.

As we talked earlier that programming is why we fail to reach our full potential.

Just think about it:

What if you could change that programming?

What if you could change it to achieve your desired goals?

It’d be amazing, right?

The problem is:

It takes time to change it. Why? Because it took years to develop.

You can’t change your inner-programming overnight.

Generally, the programming is made of what you consume from your environment.

The words you hear from your family and friends. The words you say to yourself.

The words you speak while talking to your friends.

They all leave an impact or impression on your default programming.

Put another way: they affect your subconscious mind.

So to change that programming for good, you’ll need to work on your subconscious mind.

Sound like a lot of work, right? Not really.

The author says that if you use self-talk the right way, you’ll be able to edit those internal programs and change them however you want.

Lesson #3: protect yourself from negative programming Of Mind

“Not all programming is bad for you.”

Just as not all things are bad, not all programming works against you.

Sadly, most of it is terrible. And stands as a wall between your success.

What you have to do is:

You have to break that wall by destroying your old programming and writing a new one instead.

Notice the first part: You have to break the wall that’s holding you back.

Again, it’s a lot of work.

The better approach is to protect yourself from that negative programming.

It’s a preventive measure. By doing so, you guard yourself against future troubles.

Thinking about what is positive and what is negative?

Here are a few examples of negative programming that you receive from other people:

“You are not good at [task/job].”

“You will never be able to achieve [goal].”

Sound familiar?

Here are a few examples of positive programming that you barely get from other people:

“You are good at what you do.”

“You’ll definitely achieve your [goal].”

Do you remember when was the last time someone said those encouraging words to you?

It’s not common, right?

But these days, due to the Internet, we hear lots of motivational stuff.

But since we don’t really believe in all that due to our default programming, it becomes useless after a few days.

It doesn’t leave much of an impact.

The only way to protect yourself from negative programming is by practicing self-talk.

Self-talk is when you talk to yourself.

You can talk to yourself in many ways.

For instance, you can silently talk to yourself.

Or read out positive and encouraging sentences out loud.

Please don’t ask me what to read or say out loud. There is already so much motivation on the Internet, right?

Lesson #4: You are also programming others

You don’t realize it!

But YOU are also programming others.

It might not make sense, but everyone is programming everyone else.

We all have beliefs that we cherish so much.

We share ideas and stories that we believe in.

It’s human nature. We are social animals, after all.

Unconsciously, we spread our philosophies into this world. And whether we realize it or not, we program other people.

Of course, it’s not the same thing you see in the movies. And it’s not MAGIC.

It’s neuroscience that works behind the scenes.

Many research and studies have been done by neuroscientists who study the neurons in our brains.

The question is:

How do we ensure that we are not giving negative programming to other people?

This question, again, brings us back to practicing self-talk.

Understand this:

If your programming is correct, you’ll naturally give the right programming to others.

And conversely, if your programming is negative, you’ll naturally spread negative programming onto others.

By breaking your old programming and talking to yourself, you can destroy your limiting beliefs.

This is important.

Why? Because we are continually receiving programming from other people, too – whether we want it or not.

If we are not conscious of our programming, we only delay our inevitable failures.

Bad programming will hurt you. Yes, it’s true.

We don’t realize how often our bad programming destroys the opportunities that life brings us.

Lesson #5: Motivation is a myth

The author says that all external motivation is temporary.

If you’ve read everything above, you know already how your inner programming works against you most of the time.

External motivation doesn’t last because we switch back to our old ways of doing things.

We never put those great ideas into action.

That’s why most people fail!

Because if we all put those ideas into action, we all have had become successful like Elon Musk.

We are shooting for the permanent change that would help us achieve our goals and reach our full potential.

According to the author, the best way is to change what we believe.

If we believe in the right things, we will probably take the right action and get results.

Make sense? Okay.

Now let’s get rid of some doubts that most people have about practicing self-talk.

Lesson #6: Self-talk is not hypnosis

I don’t know why, but self-talk sounds like some other-worldly thing.

Usually, people are busy and never find time to talk to themselves.

And when they hear about self-talk, they think it won’t work for them. It’s not their fault.

It’s natural to ask:

How can one become more capable of achieving his goals by talking to himself?

The truth is:

You only get results when you take action. (Nothing can change this fact)

But what action you’ll take is determined by what you think and believe.

If you think, “I will never become a great writer,” you never will.

If you think, “I will never become successful,” you never will.

If you can’t even say to yourself that you will do something extraordinary in your life, chances are you won’t do anything significant in your life.

Why? Because you don’t simply believe that you can do it.

It may sound motivational, but it’s the truth backed by science.

The author clears the myth that self-talk is not hypnosis.

In case you don’t know: 

The author says that when people are hypnotized, they enter into a trance state. And they are programmed during that time to believe certain things.

I don’t know much about it.

The point is:

During hypnosis, you aren’t fully conscious.

But when you talk to yourself, you remain fully aware.

That’s the beauty of practicing self-talk.

During self-talk, you don’t force ideas onto your subconscious mind. You consciously try to change what you think and believe about yourself.

You deliberately try to change the bad conditioning that has been done to you.

Lesson #7: Goal-Setting should be easy

setting goals to achieve dreams

If you can’t break your goals down into small, manageable goals, you’ll find it difficult to accomplish them.

Setting big goals might encourage you.

But you should also know that goals don’t have to be too BIG all the time.

The author says that goals can be as simple as having some leisure time.

Most people make goal-setting unnecessarily complicated.

They set unrealistic goals.

And once their motivation wears off, they struggle for some time and eventually give up.

You don’t need to do that.

Set simple goals in the beginning.

Don’t make things harder.

Simple goals and commitments also help you build good habits.

As I studied in the Atomic Habits by James Clear:

Good habits take time.

You often need to cross a threshold to make good habits stick.

And making micro-commitments and accomplishing small goals first helps you make good habits last.

Another reason you shouldn’t make goal-setting hard is that we don’t have much time in our lives.

No matter who you are and what your situation is, we have only 24 hours in a day.

So if your goal is unrealistic, it won’t fit into your daily life.

Big goals take time.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t strive for significant achievements.

You need to make sure that you can find time for your goals.

Another thing:

You must not think of your goals as something different from what you do daily.

If you pay attention, we are always setting simple goals for ourselves.

For instance:

Waking up before 6 AM.

Or going to the office before you get late.

These are all simple goals. And that’s the reason we accomplish them efficiently.

When we think of big goals as something unusual, we only make things harder.

The author says:

“If it’s not easy, it won’t work.”

Here is the thing:

Only simple ideas get executed. We often procrastinate on complex concepts.

So break the complex ideas into smaller ones and execute them.

What To Say When You Talk To Yourself Quotes

Here are some of the notable quotes by the author of this book:

“You’ll become what you think about most.”

Chad Helmstetter

“Not all problems are opportunities.”

Chad Helmstetter

“No idea, no matter how good, won’t work if it doesn’t get used.”

Chad Helmstetter

What To Say When You Talk To Yourself Review

What to Say When You Talk to Your Self
  • Helmstetter Ph.D, Shad (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages – 06/20/2017 (Publication Date) – Gallery Books (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-05-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon

The book focuses on saying positive affirmations, which I’m not a big fan of.

If you love listening to affirmations, you might resonate with the author.

The part where the author talks about negative programming is genuine, though. I agree that self-talk affects how we think.

But I still find it challenging to wrap my head around the idea of self-talk changing our life.

Experience is essential to change how you see yourself and think about yourself.

If your life is not harmonizing with what you say to yourself, no self-talk or affirmations could change your life.

Overall, this is a decent self-help book.

I expected more from the author, though.

My rating of this book: 8/10

The Key Takeaways from What To Say When You Talk To Yourself Summary

  • Most big ideas don’t work because our old programming undoes those changes.
  • By changing your inner programming, you can change your life.
  • The people around us shape our beliefs. Therefore, we must protect ourselves from negative programming.
  • Unconsciously, we also program other people.
  • Most of our mental programming is terrible.
  • External motivation doesn’t last for long.
  • Only by using self-talk can you condition yourself the right way.

Now it’s your turn

I hope you liked this summary and learned plenty of valuable lessons.

Now you tell me:

Do you believe that self-talk can help you change your old conditioning for good?

What self-limiting beliefs do you have right now? And how do you wish to overcome them?

Please let me know in the comments below.


Don’t forget to share this summary with your friends and family members to encourage them and help them break their lousy programming.

Thanks for reading!

FAQs about What To Say When You Talk To Yourself by Chad Helmstetter

Is it good if you talk to yourself?

Yes, talking to yourself help you clear your mind and stay focused. It also enables you to explore your mind and find limiting beliefs that are not conducive to your success.

What do I say when I talk to myself?

You can practice affirmations to motivate yourself a bit. But I recommend instead of pushing yourself to talk in your head, focus on thoughts that come into your mind. Try to understand their nature. Are they self-defeating or helping?

Why do I talk to myself a lot?

It’s not a problem. In fact, it’s a great habit to practice self-talk once in a while to connect to your deeper self. But as it is with anything in life, anything in excess becomes a problem. If you find yourself talking too much, your mind is agitated.

How do I stop talking to myself?

First, observe if you really need to stop yourself. If it’s affecting your peace of mind, take deep breaths and calm down. Allow yourself to relax a bit. Bring your attention to your breath. But this is no permanent fix. If your life is a mess, it’s challenging to keep yourself sane and control your thoughts.

Do geniuses talk to themselves?

Geniuses talk to themselves a lot. It’s a sign of having a solid understanding of your mind. And to be a genius, you must know how to handle your mind efficiently.

What to say when you talk to yourself short summary?

Talk to yourself as much as you can and understand the nature of your thoughts to cure yourself.

Is the book worth purchasing?

Yes, I highly recommend this book.

Where to buy What to say when you talk to yourself?

You can get the get book on Amazon: Check price

Next Steps: What to do after reading this book summary?

Step #1: Read more book summaries like this one.

Here are a few related summaries:

Step #2: Reflect on your daily routine

Think about important things that your inner programming directs in your life.

Do an honest analysis if you need to change your programming or not.

Step #3: Watch a course on Self-Talk

I highly recommend this course if you don’t want to read tons of books.

👉Managing Self-Doubt to Tackle Bigger Challenges [Watch for free on LinkedIn by signing up for one month free trial]

Step #4: Purchase a Paperback Copy Of this book

You can learn even more lessons by reading this book. I recommend you purchase this book and support the author.

Get the book on Amazon

Shami Manohar

The Brain Behind Wizbuskout.com

I am Shami Manohar, the founder of WizBuskOut. My obsession with non-fiction books has fueled me with the energy to create this website. I read at least one book every week on topics such as business, critical thinking, mindset, psychology, and more.

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2 thoughts on “What To Say When You Talk To Yourself Summary, Quotes, And Review”

  1. Loved the contents as usual, always to the point and summarized for saving time and the same time, the gist if presented. Thank you for Sharing Shami and making a diference in people life, keep it go.

    Palcidus Patrick . CA

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