Do you have a "internal monologue?" - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:00 AM Thread Starter
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Do you have a "internal monologue?"


When you read or think, can you hear the words being voiced over in your mind, or do you think more abstractly? I learned recently that some people don't have an "inner voice" when they think or read and I genuinely struggle to comprehend how. I'm constantly monologuing/talking to myself in my mind.

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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:17 AM
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Yup, brain won't shut up. I tend to actually voice some of it too when a feeling gets intense, good or bad. If I'm alone that happens a lot more. I also have pretend conversations sometimes.

Am I crazy? Maybe. But at least I don’t make popcorn when some people are trying to work!

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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:24 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by zkv View Post
Yup, brain won't shut up. I tend to actually voice some of it too when a feeling gets intense, good or bad. If I'm alone that happens a lot more. I also have pretend conversations sometimes.

Am I crazy? Maybe. But at least I don’t make popcorn when some people are trying to work!
Internal monologue can be curse haha. Sometimes, as I'm thinking about my own ideas, I'm basically writing speeches in my brain. Like gosh dang someone give me a podium so I can get this out of my brain and maybe have some internal quiet again haha.

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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:26 AM
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Not normally.

When I do, it's never a 'monologue', but more a dialogue (there will always be back and forth).

This only happens if I'm journaling, am very distressed, or trying very hard to concentrate.

Normally, I just float along through the days. Not sure how much thinking I actually do honestly .

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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:30 AM
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Internal monologue can be curse haha. Sometimes, as I'm thinking about my own ideas, I'm basically writing speeches in my brain. Like gosh dang someone give me a podium so I can get this out of my brain and maybe have some internal quiet again haha.
No podium for me thank you. That's scary as hell. I almost had a freaking heart attack the one time I stood in front of the class in university.

I entertain myself as long as I keep it stupid. That's my motto, keep it stupid. Silly is maybe a better word for it. Silliness is important to me.

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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
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@zkv yeah, I'm all talk (talk within my mind that is). But my internal monologue sometimes gets pretty fiery (even though, if someone did give me a podium, it would probably just sound like nonsensical rambling and I probably would be too paralyzed from fear to speak). When I'm not mentally abusing myself, I have way more confidence confided in my own mind than I do when I'm talking to other people or any situation that would make me center of attention.

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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 08:49 AM
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Had it since childhood. I basically use it to go over stuff I want to memorize or use to make a decision. Nothing from IRL, only hobby-related, and I only use it when I'm away from home and don't have to focus on something else. Say I start a new class in a MMORPG, I'll go over the abilities I can remember at the time and any remarks I have for when I get back to the game. Beats letting my mind wander, I have a problem with intrusive, unpleasant memories.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 12:24 PM
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 12:35 PM
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Yes. Sometimes I have trouble paying attention to stuff because of it.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 01:01 PM
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It's my biggest distraction and affects just about every aspect of my life.
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 04:35 PM
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It's my biggest distraction and affects just about every aspect of my life.

This! My inner voice never shuts the **** up. I get stuck in these annoying thought chasing cycles where I dive into the endless rabbit hole that is my own psyche and can't get out.

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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 05:31 PM
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Yes. My internal monologue runs constantly. I'm not sure I can think without hearing that internal voice, since it's always there. One thing I wonder about is what voice other people hear. Is it your own voice, a more idealized version of your voice, or another voice entirely? I've always heard someone else's voice, not my own (and a woman's voice at that, which I foolishly thought was normal for trans women, but it seems like most people hear their own voice, or something akin to their regular speaking voice).

A related question is how people see themselves when projecting themselves into a future or past scenario. Do you see an image of yourself doing something like a movie? Or am I the only person who does this? When I think about something that I have to do, or want to do, in the future, I project an image of myself doing it, from outside, and watch myself going through whatever actions I need to perform. I do this to pre-test for difficulties and prepare solutions. I thought everyone did this, also, but I'm no longer sure. There seems to be a lot of variation in how people think.

Is it just me or is it getting crazier out there.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 05:41 PM
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by truant View Post
Yes. My internal monologue runs constantly. I'm not sure I can think without hearing that internal voice, since it's always there. One thing I wonder about is what voice other people hear. Is it your own voice, a more idealized version of your voice, or another voice entirely? I've always heard someone else's voice, not my own (and a woman's voice at that, which I foolishly thought was normal for trans women, but it seems like most people hear their own voice, or something akin to their regular speaking voice).

A related question is how people see themselves when projecting themselves into a future or past scenario. Do you see an image of yourself doing something like a movie? Or am I the only person who does this? When I think about something that I have to do, or want to do, in the future, I project an image of myself doing it, from outside, and watch myself going through whatever actions I need to perform. I do this to pre-test for difficulties and prepare solutions. I thought everyone did this, also, but I'm no longer sure. There seems to be a lot of variation in how people think.
I hear my voice as I hear it inside, not how it actually sounds. I don't like to hear my voice played back to me but it's not nearly as painful as seeing my image.

I see myself from a third person when imagining possible scenarios too, but a non-anxious version of myself, and also how I see myself in the mirror which is not that bad for some reason. It never goes as well as I pictured it/wanted it to go. With the past sometimes it's like a movie, other times as I think it went from my POV.

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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 05:53 PM
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You guys hear a voice? I don't hear anything. Theres a quiet monologue in my head. There is speaking but no actual audio
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post #16 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 06:03 PM
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@aqwsderf I mean I don't actually hear anything, there are no sounds, but there is like a quieter version of my own voice narrating everything. It's def my voice. It's like a facsimile of audio, like when you close your eyes and visualize someone you know. Though the voice I think is more precise because its more familiar

I know some people who came to the US as kids and speak mostly English now but still do their thinking in their native language. I always thought that must be difficult, it's like your always translating. Maybe they do think in English too but I remember one in particular saying he always thinks in Russian.

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post #17 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 06:08 PM
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Yup it's Satans voice.






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Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow,
A poor player that strut's and fret's his hour upon the stage and is heard no more,
It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
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post #18 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 06:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by aqwsderf View Post
You guys hear a voice? I don't hear anything. Theres a quiet monologue in my head. There is speaking but no actual audio
Yes, like a mental-image but instead it's a mental-sound, so that when I'm thinking or reading I can hear my voice narrating in my own mind.

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post #19 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 06:09 PM
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@aqwsderf I mean I don't actually hear anything, there are no sounds, but there is like a quieter version of my own voice narrating everything. It's def my voice. It's like a facsimile of audio, like when you close your eyes and visualize someone you know. Though the voice I think is more precise because its more familiar

I know some people who came to the US as kids and speak mostly English now but still do their thinking in their native language. I always thought that must be difficult, it;s like your always translating. Maybe they do think in English too but I remember one in particular saying he always thinks in Russian.
Okay yeah that's more how it is for me as well. It's like when you picture someone its not so vivid but its there. Kind of like your "reading voice." But no actual audio

I came to the US at age 4, but I think in English. I wonder if there's a specific age where that changes. I can intentionally think in Spanish but I'd have to focus.
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post #20 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 07:33 PM
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Yes. When I was younger if I hadn't thought about a topic using the inner voice, I didn't know that I was actually thinking. To me it seems a fine line between not having the voice and not having any thoughts.

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