The voice in the back of your mind that chatters away about useless and random things throughout the day is known as the internal dialogue. It says things like "I'm hungry; wow that person is attractive; ouch my back hurts; maybe I should go to the store later on; I wonder what my friend is doing right now" etc. Such mental chattering to oneself is really a huge waste of energy and only serves to maintain one's focus on the physical realm and everyday life. THAT is what the internal dialogue is and does. Most people don't bother to take the time to discipline their minds enough to keep it from rambling on in a random manner. What is so bad about this seemingly normal mental activity? If you are constantly sending yourself false negative messages about yourself, then you will continue to perpetuate a negative outlook on reality while believing your own erroneous thoughts.
The way the subconscious picks up on these negative messages is simple. Example: A person might think to himself "I'm lonely." Or, "I'm worthless." Then, his undisciplined internal dialogue will pick up on this false message about himself if it is repeated often enough or on that person's mind, and eventually it will become a regular part of a mental tape-loop constantly repeating the message. The person then hears or feels these negative messages about him/herself and then forgets that he is the person who put them there in the first place! Because the individual doesn't remember how those messages got in there, he will now start to believe those negative messages about himself as though they are true.
It is possible to reprogram one's subconscious and internal dialogue through a very simple mantra exercise. Use this exercise if you're constantly depressed, tense, upset, or simply wish to make a change in the way you view life or react to situations.
Use POSITIVE PRESENT-TENSE PHRASES and tell yourself that you are something you might not believe yourself to currently be, but wish to be. If you are depressed and hate yourself, then you will choose a phrase that asserts that you are happy and love yourself, for example. It doesn't matter if you believe these positive messages about yourself or not, because your internal dialogue will pick up on them and start to repeat them back to you later regardless. Try to keep the phrases you use short and simple for most effectiveness. The subconscious does not speak the language of intellectual thought; it communicates through pictures and feelings. Keep the messages you send it basic and to the point. I prefer flowing short phrases for myself when I do this exercise, and I try to convey the essence of what I really need to say using powerful and sometimes emotional words.
Examples of phrases:
Don't use words like 'NOT' or 'doesn't' or anything with a negative connotation to it on its own. Just the feeling of the word 'NOT' is enough to possibly ruin your message to yourself since it's a small amount of negativity in itself and the subconscious might pick up on it and use it somewhere else. I've found phrases with the word 'NOT' in them to be less effective on myself regardless of how positive the meaning was intended to be. If your problem is a tense feeling in your chest, don't say to yourself, "I'm not tense." That will only keep the message of tension and a slight feeling of negativity in your mind due to the words 'not' and 'tense.' Instead, find the opposite message to those feelings and try to express it in a completely positive way, e.g. "I am relaxed."
In actual practice, you would first sit or lay in a comfortable position. It's best to do this exercise when your mind is most receptive, such as just before sleep or just after you wake up (but before you get out of bed). Breathe slowly and deeply just as in meditation. Then, begin to repeat your chosen phrase over and over in a constant rhythm, just like a mantra. You may chose to leave a slight pause after each sentence if it feels more comfortable. After several minutes, you can try repeating the phrase only in your mind rather than out loud. Do this for several minutes, or up to an hour if you can. You should have no other thoughts in your mind but the phrase you are concentrating on. Within about 20 minutes, it should feel automatic to repeat the phrase to yourself and you might even find yourself thinking about other things while the phrase CONTINUES to be repeated in the back of your head. This is ok if it happens in this case, since that shows that the new program is already becoming a part of your normal internal dialogue. You should do this exercise for each phrase several times a day or throughout the day, FOR AT LEAST A WEEK for best results. It doesn't matter if you actually believe the 'lies' you're telling yourself. The results will still start to show within a few days since you're reprogramming the messages that you send to yourself subconsciously. This method has never failed as long as the person doing it has actually practiced the exercise often enough.
If you find it helpful, you can try making use of a string of 50 beads or knots in a string to assist you to count the number of repetitions without distracting your mind from performing the exercise. It doesn't matter if you fall asleep during the exercise - that will only help it become more effective since it was the last thing in your mind before sleep and so your subconscious will be more inclined to turn it over while you rest. See Franz Bardon's "Initiation into Hermetics" and Victor Sanchez's "The Teachings of Don Carlos" (available on the recommended books page) for more details.