Word Play on Your Body

How do you talk to yourself? Do you give yourself motivational words in tough situations? Do you tell yourself “I can’t do this” when things seem too hard to follow through on? How about “Why can’t I be that skinny?” or “I wish I was smart enough to complete this assignment”? These positive and negative thoughts significantly affect the rest of your mind and even your body. It should be no surprise that negative causes negative, and positive causes positive. Here’s what I mean.

Mental and verbal positive thinking cause feelings of hope, happiness, and encouragement. These feelings cause a reduction in stress levels, pull you away from depression, promise you a longer life, and cause a release of endorphins and dopamine. Let’s break it down.

Stress Levels:

When your thoughts consist of positivity, cortisol (the “stress hormone”) levels have a tendency to be more stable than those who think negatively. In times of stress, optimists have an easier time of controlling their anxious thoughts—meaning they easily cope with stress.

When your thoughts consist of negativity, cortisol levels stay constantly elevated. This means pessimists have a harder time lowering their levels of stress during an overly-stressful situation. Because of this increase in cortisol, you might experience heavy breathing, extreme fatigue, and irritability. All of these symptoms are an effect of distress, along with many other symptoms.

With less stress, you can expect clearer and brighter skin, a decrease in anxiety, improvement in sleep, and a better mood. With more stress, you can expect the exact opposite.


Consider someone with depression - could be you or a close family member. A study was completed in which the volunteers with depression were observed as they completed a session of cognitive-behavioral therapy. This session focused on enhancing coping mechanisms from previous personal incidents. The study showed that just one of those sessions contributed to improvement in wellness. Simple thoughts like “I can do this” or even creating long-term and short-term goals help with managing depressive thinking. Similar research was done on cancer patients with a noted rise in positive thoughts was also an increase in survival.

With thoughts of hopelessness, you are more at risk for a depressive disorder than someone with hopeful thoughts. Pessimists are known for giving up or avoiding problems, leaving them in the funk of depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders. Similarly, excessive complaining with no hope for the future contributes to those depressive thoughts.

Believe it or not, these thoughts - whether positive or negative - play a role on your physical well-being. It is reported that optimists have a decrease in general mortality and in cardiovascular mortality. Sounds to me like these thoughts in your head correlate with the feelings in your heart!


The release of this chemical in the brain helps lessen anxiety and depression. The best ways to release endorphins are through regular exercise and laughter. Check out my article, here, to see other benefits of laughing! Even chocolate and other foods are known to cause a release of endorphins.


With constant levels of dopamine, you can expect a motivational attitude toward reaching goals and having pleasure in accomplishing them. Creating new goals and celebrating when you reach them makes it safe to say you’ll experience steady levels of dopamine. Try to never have a set finish line; there’s always another goal you can strive toward!

Both endorphins and dopamine can be released through motivational words such as “I’m going to finish this chapter right now. I can do this.” Then proceed to finish the chapter and reward yourself with looking at funny memes or a small piece of chocolate.

The way you talk to yourself is much more important than you might think! No matter your shape and size, everyone is too worried about themselves to think about your appearance. Embrace who YOU are. Give yourself that one-minute pep talk in the mirror every morning. Confidence will change you inside and out, and it all starts with your mind.