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Is it normal to talk to yourself?

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TEDEd Animation

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Being caught talking to yourself can feel embarrassing, and some people even stigmatize this behavior as a sign of mental instability. But decades of research show that talking to yourself is completely normal; most if not all of us engage in some form of self-talk every day. So why do we talk to ourselves? And does what we say matter? Dig into the psychological benefits of positive self-talk.

Additional Resources for you to Explore

Interested in how scientists study self-talk and its effect on the brain? Read this article by psychologist Charles Fernyhough. To learn more about how distancing yourself in your self-talk can be beneficial, explore this article from Advances in Experimental Social Psychology or this tip article from Character Lab. Lastly, read this blog for advice on how to improve positive self-talk and how to stop toxic cycles of negative self-talk.

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About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Shannon Odell
  • Director Avi Ofer
  • Narrator Alexandra Panzer
  • Composer Salil Bhayani, cAMP Studio
  • Sound Designer Nirana Singh, cAMP Studio
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Produced by Anna Bechtol, Abdallah Ewis
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Editorial Producer Dan Kwartler
  • Expert Consultant Ethan Kross, Tom Brinthaupt

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