How To Get The Most Out Of Affirmations
A few years back, I read an interesting article about how to get the most out of “affirmation.” The writer mentioned that when we repeat affirmations or say positive things about ourselves, it can have a powerful effect.
I remember being particularly motivated after reading this piece because I was in a bad mood and wanted to feel better. So I made a list of reasons why my life was going poorly and then said each reason aloud.
It worked! I felt happier and more confident. I also remembered this trick from childhood, where kids will repeat something like, “I am not smart,” over and over until everyone around them agrees. It works just as well for adults.
If you need some help feeling inspired, try making a list of actions you want to do or statements you want to make. Then, take those words and turn them into affirmative ones by adding the word “me.��” at the end. For example, if your goal is to spend Sunday doing all sorts of fun activities, yours might be, “Me spending Sundays doing exciting things.”
This way, the message says both what you want to do and why you want to do it, giving you extra motivation.
Make them personal
A good place to start is by making your affirmations more personal. Rather than saying something like “I want money,” say “ I will find a way to make enough money so that my family can live our life as we desire it.”
This adds more depth to your affirmation and makes it more believable. Your subconscious mind will also learn how to associate this new statement with earning money so you can keep up your goal.
By adding details such as a person or situation, your affirmation has more weight and meaning.
Your subconscious will pick up on these nuances and add the necessary energy to ensure the success of your affirmation.
Make them realistic
A lot of people start using affirmations, but they get very vague about what they want to change or fix. They might say things like “I wish I had my life back” or “I want to feel happier” or something similar.
These are nice starting points, but they don’t really give you any clues as to what needs to be done to achieve that goal.
You have to understand how your body works before you can make an appropriate diagnosis, so it makes sense to do the same with your mind.
By being more specific, you will help yourself identify possible causes and effective treatments.
That is why it is important to ask yourself questions such as: What situations make me unhappy? Is there anything that I could possibly do to avoid these situations? If yes, then how much effort would it take for me to accomplish this?
Once you have those answers, you can begin looking at ways to modify or eliminate them.
Use them with caution
While affirmations are very powerful, you should use them with care. Too much thinking about how wonderful you are can backfire and create more internalized self-hater thoughts.
Affirmations that contain “I” or “me” messages may also be tricky to implement. When we think about all the things that make us not worthy, it is easy to conclude that we are not worthy.
The simple solution is to remove the word “I” from your affirmation. You can say something like, “ I appreciate __________ (name item) so I will do ________________ (action).”
By removing the word “I”, this amplifies the effect of the affirmation because now it doesn’t include any words for yourself. It removes the element of self-appreciation, which can sometimes get lost in negative thoughts.
Only focus on what you can do
A lot of people add affirmations into their lives to get some sort of quick fix or luscious reward. Unfortunately, this is not the right way to use them.
Affirmations are powerful tools that work by changing how you think about yourself and your life. By adding an affirmation into your daily routine, it changes the way you perceive yourself and your surroundings.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but using affirmations for the wrong reason can be disastrous!
They should only be used to help you develop strong self-confidence and trust in yourself.
They should be realistic
A lot of people add affirmations to their daily practices without testing them first. This is not a good idea because they may feel great, but they may not work.
Affirmation studies have shown that if your affirmation does not seem believable or reasonable, then it will probably fail to change anything about you or your life.
For example, an affirmation like “I’m so beautiful” might make you feel pretty at first, but then you would also need to believe that you are ugly.
Another example could be saying “money flows into my account effortlessly”, which sounds nice, but what happens when you run out of money?
The truth is, thinking about money in ways that bring you more of it takes work! It requires you to spend time creating a mental picture of how to gain money, and then you must actually go through steps to achieve that goal.
Make them your own
A good affirmation must be written in your own voice, and you should use the first person “I” or the second-person “you” to say it.
Your thoughts become your words, so if you make the statement yourself, it is more likely to hold true for you. Yours can be simple and short, or very elaborate – it does not matter as long as it resonates with you.
Some people may find it helpful to add an additional element such as “so that I know how well this works for me” or “for now” before their affirmations. This adds some trivial detail to give credit to the truth of the affirmation.
You can also add other parts to your affirmation to make it special. For example, adding the word “success” will probably inspire you to reach success goals, adding the word “happy” will help you feel happier, and adding “fulfillment” will help you feel like you are living your life purposefully.
In fact, there is no wrong way to create your own affirmations! The only thing to watch out for is whether your affirmation sounds fake or unnatural. Yours could be too formal or clichéd.
Use them with friends
A great way to use affirmations is in your daily life. For example, if you want to improve your relationships with people, then starting each day by telling yourself how much you love someone or tell them that they mean the world to you can make a difference.
If you know someone who feels like their life is completely out of control, maybe they’re not quite sure what to do about it, you could say an affirmation such as ‘My personal success depends on me, so I will succeed!’ Or for someone who feels overwhelmed, you could say something like ‘All things are possible; I have no reason to feel limited or confined’.
You can also create affirmative statements for goal setting. For instance, if your goal this year is to pay off all your debt, an affirmation would be ‘I will spend less money than I need to on unnecessary junk and expensive distractions’.
Using affirmations in your daily lives is a fun way to strengthen your self-confidence and spirit. Try doing it for a few days and see what changes you notice in your emotions and behavior.
Take a picture and keep a journal
Between having a ritual you do every day, having an affirmation you say every morning and night, and creating a journal where you write down thoughts and experiences, it is very possible to have all three make a big difference in your mental wellness.
Having a journal helps you organize all of your thoughts and feelings into a logical place that you can access at any time. You get to look back over past entries and see how much progress or regression you made with your own life.
Trying to remember everything that happened today could use some organizing!
Take a moment this week to create a journal (or start one if you’ve been keeping one for awhile). Make it simple and easy to update – no fancy fonts or decorations needed!
Also, take a few minutes each day to review what you wrote in your journal yesterday. Do not hesitate to be critical as yourself. If you cannot recognize a success story from the day before, then perhaps it is time to reevaluate your goals or changes you need to make.