In my original Coping Strategies post I briefly mentioned the difference between saying I need to or should do something and saying I want to do it. If everything on your task list is a should message or a have-to then nothing really feels like a choice. Yes, I know that I should get up early to get some chores done before I leave. If I say instead, that I want to get up to get a good start on the day then I've easily made a positive impact on my life. I allow myself to make positive choices.
The most powerful example of language was explained to me by a counselor several years ago. It has to do with the way we talk about our feelings. I have feelings yet I am not my feelings. I may feel sad. And sometimes I feel angry. But those feelings are not me. I retrained myself to avoid saying, "I am angry, or I am lonely." It's all in the power of the statement "I am."
Positive feelings are the ones I want to embody. So for those ideas I use "I am" statements. Yes, I am happy and I am courageous and maybe I am a bit sassy from time to time. I Take Care of myself by taking charge of the language that defines me. It's all in the power of the words I choose.