We all have a small voice in our heads. It can make us feel less capable if we allow it. The result is that we don't accomplish what we wanted.

As word experts and hosts of NPR's award-winning show "You're saying It Wrong," we've found ways to change our thoughts and attitudes.

If you want to think more positively and feel more confident, you need to ditch the negative phrases.

I get to do that, what to say?

A small change in attitude will change a lot. It makes you think about something in a different way. If the task is unpleasant, you can learn new things.

I can try to do that, that's what I'm going to say.

Don't say you've lost before you start. It is easier to succeed when you tell yourself that you can try, and that you are not setting high expectations.

I will do that, what to say? Depending on your mindset, either "won't do" or "won't do"

Pressure is put on us by the word "should". Put yourself back in control. If you want to make yourself the decision-maker, drop the "should" and choose whether or not to do something.

What to say next?

When you ask yourself what you are learning, you can turn it into something that will help you. You aren't complaining, you're just finding the good in a difficult time.

I now know because I did that.

You start to think about the good things that happened because you thought you shouldn't have done it. Maybe you met someone you wouldn't have met.

The attempt didn't work.

Maybe it didn't turn out the way you thought it would. You didn't get a new client or promotion you wanted. You are being unfair to yourself if you say that you failed. There will be other opportunities, remember.

No, what to say?

Have you had your "if only" moments? If only I had spoken up at that meeting with my idea. This is no longer valid. You don't learn from the past, you just make excuses.

I don't know what to say.

You are making it sound like it is an un changeable fact when you tell yourself that you will never get your mind around it. You are telling yourself that you can't change or grow, which is nonsense. All of us are working in progress.

I can deal with it anyways.

Life can feel unfair at times, but that doesn't mean you have to keep repeating that negative message to yourself. Look for solutions that will allow you to be where you want to be.

I can change the way I look at this.

Another example of going from passive to active is this one. You should be in control of the situation. Is it possible that it can't change? Change your approach to it and think about it.

Harvard nutritionist: This is the No. 1 vitamin to keep your brain sharp