Self-Talk and Kanye West


What can we learn from others about OUR self-talk if we’re willing to take the time to look for ourselves in their behavior?

A few years back, during the Video Music Awards, musician Kanye West jumped onto the stage as Taylor Swift was giving her acceptance speech for receiving the Best Femal Video of the year award. Taking the microphone from Taylor’s hands, Kanye announced to a stunned audience that Beyonce was more deserving of the award. Within twenty-four hours, Kanye was making what appeared to be sincere apologies for his rash behavior, and he received a poised, immediate, and gracious acceptance from Taylor.

It would be easy to judge Kanye for such rude behavior, except for the fact that we’ve all been there.

We’ve all grabbed something out of someone’s hands when we didn’t think they deserved it.

We’ve all felt the while-hot heat rise in our hearts when, in our eyes, our loved ones have been ripped off or defrauded.

We’ve all wanted to grab a microphone a time or two (or maybe more) and holler out to the world that life isn’t fair, that someone else is getting the accolades when they don’t truly deserve it.

Interestingly enough, Kanye’s experience may have given him a glimpse of his inner world. On September 27, 2009, the celebrity gossip mag Gatecrasher stated that hip-hopper Kanye West hasn’t been his typical brash self of late. In recent events, he’s been “reserved, quiet, and humble . . .” Perhaps Kanye tuned in to his self-talk and started listening. Perhaps he’s searching out what motivated him to jump to the stage that day. Perhaps he looked beyond himself  to the power of his influence on others.

We all take to the stage in one way or another dozens of times a day. We just don’t want to admit it. And without the spiritual discipline of self-evaluation, we often remain unchanged and blind to the way the world sees us.

Thank you, Kanye, for helping us see ourselves.

May we all be willing to look honestly at ourselves in our worst moments, seek forgiveness, and walk on with humbled hearts that press in to the grace of God.

LISTEN IN Tuesday, March 17 as I talk about my book The Silent Seduction of Self-Talk on FOCUS ON THE FAMILY and talk candidly about how our self-talk influences our relationships. Check your local station for air times, or go to to listen to the archived program.

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