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How to Challenge Negative Self-Talk and Find Inner Peace

Identifying negative thinking and achieving inner peace and happiness

If you struggle with negative self talk and wonder how to change it, this post can be your starting point for understanding how to deal with and respond to those negative inner thoughts. Having an inner critic is part of being a human, and at times it can be helpful (like when you are indulging in something that might not be healthy for your mind or body). However, if that voice turns out to be more harmful than helpful, if you notice excessive negativity and it creates significant stress, then that inner critic might be limiting you and making you doubt your every move, making life painful and unfulfilling.

Fortunately, there are some good news. The fact that you are reading this post, means you are aware of those limiting beliefs and negative thoughts going through your mind, and that is the first step in dealing with them. Not noticing the negative train of thought can lead to a spiral of damaging thoughts and emotions. By noticing them, we are able to contain them and deal with them. There are many different ways of trying to minimize negative self talk, and I will be listing the ones I found helpful in my own experience.

By dealing with our inner critic, noticing when it is being destructive and working on challenging those negative thoughts, we are heading towards a place of self-compassion and love. I like to refer to that place as my inner peace – a state of spiritual calm despite the potential presence of stressor. Sounds like a wonderful place to be, doesn’t it?

6 tips to try out in order to minimize negative self talk and work on building inner peace:

Stand up to your inner bully

Challenge that negative self talk and stand up to your inner bully. One of the biggest issues with negative self talk is that nobody stands up to it and question its validity, and those thoughts go unchallenged. Just imagine someone said those things to someone you love, what would you say to them? Now act as if they did say that to someone you love, and defend yourself. Be to yourself who you are to those you love.

Ask for help

See a professional. If things seem too hard, don’t wait for it to get worse. Asking for help makes you stronger. Therapy can be helpful for everyone, and you do not have to wait for things to get unbearable. A mental health professional can help you understand and explore your relationship with yourself, understand yourself better. Therapy can lead the way towards healing and creating a better home in your mind.

Live according to your values

Determine your values and act accordingly. Why is this important? When we don’t live according to our values, we can’t be entirely happy and content with our lives. This does not mean live blindly according to something, but that your general direction through life should follow your inner values. Once you start living in alignment, life shifts in the most beautiful of ways. You stop holding on to the things that no longer serve you and reach within yourself for whatever you may need. Living in alignment brings inner peace – and it all starts with you asking yourself “What is important to me and how do I want to live my life?”.

Set boundaries with others

Set firm boundaries with other people. Don’t give your energy to them. Avoid those that stress you out and bring negativity into your life. Surround yourself with supportive people you are able to depend on to give you helpful advice, having your best interest at heart. Choose those that bring light into your life, not darkness, and be that person for them too.

Practice self compassion

You will not always get everything right, and that is okay. You don’t work towards perfection, you work towards progress. Wherever you currently are, accept yourself. Accept that you needed more or less time for some things and that you might even change your mind along the way. You are doing your best and that is enough. Give yourself a hug (a physical one, just try it, trust me) and forgive yourself. Remember: failing at something is a normal part of being human. This does not mean that you are a failure, but that you simply failed at something. Take that experience as a lesson and ask yourself – what is it that I can learn from this?

Take good care of your whole self

Exercise, eat nourishing food to fuel your body and mind, and learn how to deal with stress in a healthy way. Create healthy evening and morning routines to help better your sleep and manage your energy throughout the day. Following a more healthy lifestyle can have a huge impact on your overall well-being. Exercising can positively affect your mood, along with a healthy diet which will energize your body and give it the necessary fuel.

These tips are aimed at those wishing to improve their general well-being. However, if you are overwhelmed by your negative self talk, feel like you cannot cope, you should seek help right away. Ask help from a health professional, and/or call your local hotline.

With love and compassion,

Common Unicorn

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8 Simple Lifestyle Changes to Help Reduce Stress

How to Relieve Stress and Anxiety in a Healthy Way

Stress is our body and mind’s normal response to challenges in our daily life. Short term, it can help us perform better when the clock is ticking and we are under pressure, and it enables us to respond quickly to threats and danger. However, longer or constant exposure to stress can pose problems for our overall health – it can affect our physical health, our mental well-being and emotional state.

While we may not (to the full extent) be able to change what causes stress, we can focus on our reaction and our stress management. Now you’re probably thinking ‘easier said than done’, huh? Well here I offer 8 simple and healthy lifestyle changes you can implement into your daily routine, slowly and steadily shifting your mindset towards a slower, lighter, more mindful, and healthier way of living. Why do I think that can help in reducing and better managing everyday stress?

Just imagine 2 scenarios: in one, you woke up in a rush, you ate some pizza from yesterday for breakfast, while scrolling through social media, and you quickly got dressed and rushed off to work. In the other, you woke up in time, even earlier, you didn’t look at your phone right away. You stretched out a bit, meditated for a couple of minutes, and made yourself a healthy breakfast, which you ate mindfully, without any distractions. You had enough time to get ready at your own pace and went to work. Which of these two scenario-people do you think will handle that day’s work stress better? The second one, without a doubt. The cause (outside element) might be the same, but the person managing it will be different.

8 Healthy Lifestyle Habits for Better Managing Everyday Stress

Create a simple, but effective morning routine

How you start each day sets the tone for the rest of that day. Wake up early, give yourself time to wake up entirely – stretch or workout to wake up your body, meditate, and have a healthy breakfast without any distractions. Set yourself for a more mindful and focused day.

Go to bed early

Tiredness is like adding fuel to stressful situations. Having more energy is the first step in dealing with stressful situations more effectively. Also, in order to maintain a productive morning routine, it is important to get enough sleep and rest the night before. Go to bed early and enjoy your well deserved rest.

Avoid people who stress you out

Other people play a huge role in our everyday lives. Some people may not be that easy to avoid, but sometimes we keep hanging out with people that cause negative emotions in us out of pure habit. Re-evaluate your social life, detect who influences your life in a solely negative way, and re-consider how you handle them.

Practice deep breathing throughout the day

Set your timer for every couple of hours, and pause to have a couple of deep and mindful breaths. All of us easily get caught up and race through the day, this can help you keep yourself more grounded and remind you to pause every now and then.

Identify what is causing your stress and anxiety

Sometimes it takes us some time to recognize we are under huge stress or feeling anxious. Mindful breathing breaks are a tool in helping you understand your state of being – if you’re under stress, taking a pause can help you realize that. Beside acknowledging your body and mind are experiencing stress, work on identifying the cause. Look at your habits, your attitude about the cause, and the possible excuses you might be making. We often multiply our stressful response by building it up in our mind – break that cycle by observing it and calling it what it is. The purpose is not to minimize what is happening, but to minimize your reaction to it.

Get regular exercise

Except for having great physical health benefits, exercise can also be a powerful stress reliever. Whether it is a daily 30-minute walk, a fitness workout using an app on your phone, just find what works for you and stay consistent.

Reduce caffeine and sugar

If you adopt healthy habits, while still maintaining the unhealthy ones, not much can be done in managing and reducing your stress levels. Reduce your refined sugar intake and the amount of coffee you drink. Besides being your sidekick for stress relief, it can also improve your sleeping habits.

Avoid tobacco, alcohol and other drugs

Tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs, along with many other harmful health consequences, are also your enemy when it comes to healthy coping mechanisms and relieving stress. I just cannot stress enough the amount of negative impact it has on your overall well-being and how you deal with stressful situations, so here are a couple of useful links if you want to look more into it:


If you are struggling with negative self talk and wonder how to change it, this post can be your starting point for understanding how to deal with and respond to those negative inner thoughts and work towards finding inner peace.

These tips are aimed at those dealing with regular everyday stress and wish to improve their general well-being. However, if you are overwhelmed by stress, feel like you cannot cope, you should seek help right away. Ask help from a health professional, and/or call your local hotline.

With love and compassion,

Common Unicorn

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simple tips to improve your mental health - calming photo of a candle on a table

10 Things You Can Do To Improve Your Mental Well-being

Simple Tips To Boost Your Mental Health

It is easy to get caught up with work, the news, social media, and many other things that are competing for our attention. An important part of our well-being is our mental health, which can additionally be affected during extensive and multiple lockdowns during the pandemic. How to improve and maintain our mental health should be on our priority list, but still we often neglect it.

Building a routine that supports your psychological well-being can create an amazing environment for your general wellness and personal growth. Here is a list of some simple and straightforward activities you can easily incorporate into your normal routine and feel all the advantages.

How To Improve Your Mental Health

1. Start the day with gratitude and self compassion

Either by taking a mental note or writing in your journal, start the day with acknowledging at least one thing you are grateful for, and one thing you love about yourself. You might find this hard at first, but there are a lot of things to be grateful for, as well as there are a lot of things you can love about yourself. Practicing this daily can help you shift your mindset towards a more positive state, encouraging you to stay more present and feel content.

2. Move your body

Findings from research indicate that exercise is associated with improvements in mental health including boosts in mood and self-esteem. But even research aside, you alone can tell that you actually feel better after a hike, a bike ride, or a yoga practice. Whichever you find the most exciting, get your body moving and make it a habit – both your body and mind will thank you.

3. Maintain social connections

Humans are social creatures with emotional needs for companionship and positive connections. We’re not meant for isolation and solitude. Connect with friends, family, loved ones, either in person, or through a video call. Face-to-face connections are like food for our emotional mind. 

4. Read

Grab that book you’ve been meaning to read and get lost in it. Diving into a good book can calm the mind and relax the body, as simple as that.

5. Disconnect to reconnect

Go off the grid – move your phone away from you for a day (when it is possible of course) and disconnect from constant alerts, notifications, and distractions. Spend that time to reconnect with someone or even to reconnect with yourself – enjoy your me-time.

6. Deep breathing and meditation

Keep yourself grounded and in the present moment by taking a few deep breaths or by practicing mindfulness with a guided meditation. The benefits of practicing mindfulness are numerous. You can also read about my own experience in using mindfulness meditations to relieve anxiety and to deal with cravings.

7. Go for a walk outside

Especially if it is sunny outside, use that walk in the sunshine as a double mood booster. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen!

8. Do something nice for someone

Perform a random act of kindness. Volunteer to help someone else. Whichever you choose, doing something to help someone, putting a smile on their face, is a great way to feel better about yourself!

9. Get enough sleep

Sleep is essential to your energy levels and productivity throughout the day – make sure you get enough of it.

10. Replace unhealthy habits to unwind with healthy ones

Replace the unhealthy habits you use to unwind (like alcohol or smoking) with healthy ones. Replace that evening glass of wine with a soothing herbal tea – you will sleep better and feel better in the morning. Check out here other ways to unwind in the evening without alcohol.

How to improve your mental well-being - a calming photo of books, sunglasses and a candle

Mental wellness is achieved with good emotional, psychological, and social well-being

All in all, make sure you’re taking time to focus on your mental health activities, build steady healthy habits around your day, and most importantly – be kind to yourself, no matter what 🙂

Keep in mind that these activities do not serve as a solution for mental issues, they are helpful tools for maintaining a good mental health. If you are struggling, seek help from your physician or a professional and / or call your local hotline if necessary.

If you enjoyed this read, I recommend you look into more self-improvement ideas – check out these steps to take to awaken the badass inside you (a sassy spiritual awakening list). For more tips on embracing sobriety, I recommend reading my reasons to quit drinking, or to put it differently, the things you’ll be missing out on when you quit booze for good.

With love and compassion,

Common Unicorn

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4 Ways To Handle Intrusive People - A person typing a response on a laptop

How To Deal With Invasive And Nosy People

4 Ways To Handle Intrusive People | Setting Your Boundaries Today

Who are we talking about here? They are those who ask inappropriate and private questions like “why don’t you have kids” or “when will you get married”. Those who give unsolicited advice and opinions. The ones you’ll catch gossiping every chance they get. Whether it is a nosy relative, an overly curious colleague asking a way to personal question, or a friend crossing boundaries and invading your privacy, dealing with difficult situations and reacting properly to nosy people takes time and practice. Don’t worry though, because if you are looking for tips on dealing with nosy people with intrusive questions, you are in the right place

I had my fair share of those interactions, and I like to think I’ve found a way to deal with those situations. Our reactions and how we handle them also depend on what the relationship with that person means to us, and if we wish to keep it.

Depending on the nature of the relationship, here is how you can respond to invasive behaviour:

1. Understand they are using that behavior to hide their own insecurities

This first step is for you to understand it was probably never that much about you, as it was a tool for them to deflect, focus on others instead of their own insecurities. I am not making excuses for them and that doesn’t make that behaviour okay, it is simply what I use to have a less emotional reaction and to, frankly, care less. It actually works, and that’s the whole point here – how you react and feel when encountered with those situations and people.

2. With kindness make them realize their intrusive actions

This one seems almost controversial, as the social norm isn’t often to be direct. But some people may not even be aware of their intrusive behaviour, and if you gently communicate your discomfort, you can clearly state your boundaries. If this seems too direct for you, you can start by practicing indirect ways of letting them know they are being intrusive (through a joke, or by letting them know that was a strange thing to ask).

3. Practice generic answers to common questions

This one is for those mainstream, but very personal questions some people just feel entitled to ask you, like “why don’t you have kids yet”, etc. If those questions are asked by people you barely know simply practice a generic, non-revealing answer, or even use deflection (and change the subject if you find a way), and avoid the question entirely.

4. Let them know how you feel

I practice this reaction when the questions are too personal, but the person asking it is someone close. For example, when my mom asks some of the above questions, I let her know how that makes me feel. I do this when I wish to maintain the relationship with the person asking it, and I feel comfortable enough to tell her how that makes me feel. They usually get it, and it helps our relationship.

Handling Difficult Situations With Nosy People

There are a lot more ways to deal with these situations, and you probably have some of your own. If you’d like to find out more ways of dealing with these situations, I did some digging and here are my top picks:

Please let me know if you found some of these ways useful, and if you’d add something else to the list. Also, you can check out the 5 steps I took to awaken the badass within, empowerment is always a good thing.

Don’t forget to subscribe with your email to stay in touch and get the latest!

With love,

Common Unicorn

If you enjoyed this read, subscribe to my mailing list so I can keep you updated with the latest posts, regular freebies, amazing opportunities, exclusive discounts and more. Also, by joining the list, you receive right away for FREE the amazing 30 Day Self-Care Challenge and a Printable Calendar!

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