Using Affirmations ~
I’m a huge believer in affirmations and have been using them for many years. As defined by Louise Hay, who is one of, if not, the pioneer of affirmation work, “Affirmations are positive statements that consciously reprogram your mind to accept new ways of living.”
Did you know that the average person has over 60,000 thoughts per day? The majority of those thoughts are unconscious and for most people the majority of those thoughts are negative.
What you believe, your thoughts, and the words that you speak create your reality. They all shape how you see the world and how you move through the world. It doesn't matter what's going on around you, you will also see what you belief.
Consider the phrase, that you’ve likely heard hundreds of times in your life, "Is the glass half empty or half full?"
Two different people can be looking at the exact same glass and can have two opposing answers. Why? Because each person's perception of that glass is based on how they see things in the world. It's based on what they believe.
In my work with women I often hear things like,
“Well this is just what I've always known.”
“I was raised to believe this.”
“This is what I've been taught.”
“It's just the way I am.”
These are the things that we say when we're not willing to change our belief. You are exactly where you are in your life right now because of what you believe, what you think, and how you speak.
We all have the power to change our beliefs. We all have the power to change our thoughts and the words we speak; to change our perception, thereby changing our life.
Think of your mind as a garden. In order for a garden to thrive it needs to have healthy, fertile soil and it needs to be free of weeds. Your negative thoughts and beliefs are the weeds, sucking the nutrients and draining the good stuff. You want to remove those weeds as much as possible. In order for you to thrive, flourish, and live in the abundance that you desire, in every area of your life, you need healthy, positive, uplifting, encouraging beliefs, thoughts, and words.
Working with affirmations requires awareness (or consciousness), consistency, and patience. I find that most people are not successful with affirmations because they're not as aware as they could be, they’re not consistent, and they’re not patient. They think they're just going to say this new affirmation a few times and poof, everything is going to change. We live in a microwave world; we’re used to things happening very quickly. However, changing, what are often deep-rooted beliefs, doesn’t happen overnight. It can absolutely be done, and it requires awareness, consistency, and patience.
To be effective, affirmations need to be in the present tense. Use statements such as I am, I affirm, or I love.
- I am a confident woman.
- I affirm that my body is healthy and strong.
- I love that my job provides an abundant income for me to live comfortably.
When using affirmations you’ll find that the more you use them the lighter you feel. Negativity is heavy and draining, it drags you down. Affirmations help to promote ease and increase happiness. They even change the way you carry yourself. You can’t help but sit or stand a little bit taller when you’re positively affirming.
How To Get Started Using Affirmations:
- Sit with a pen and paper in a quiet place where you’ll be uninterrupted for a while.
- Choose an area of your life that you want to improve and write out all the beliefs that you currently have regarding that area.
- Once complete, go through each of those statements and replace all the negative ones, that are keeping you stuck, with a positive, affirming statement.
- Remember to write the affirming statements in the present tense.
This writing exercise is so important because it prepares you and gives you positive statemtents to replace your old beliefs with.
Here's an example from my own life to further highlight this exercise. One of the areas I’ve worked to change is my relationship with money. When I was growing up I was taught things like:
- Money doesn’t grow on trees
- Women don’t earn as much as men
- Money is hard to get
- You have to work really hard for what you have in your life
- It’s really difficult to get rich or to have an abundance of money
- Life is expensive
These were some of the beliefs I used to live with. They were my thoughts about money, these were some of ways I spoke about money, and guess what? My income reflected them all. I lived in lack and scarcity. It didn't matter how much money was in my bank account, it was never enough. Until I began changing these beliefs.
Money doesn’t grow on trees became Abundance surrounds me and I am abundant in every area of my life
Women don't earn as much as men turned into I am worthy of earning an abundant income from my services
I became more aware of my thoughts and how I spoke about money. Every time I noticed one of my old beliefs popping in, I would replace it with one of my new positive affirming statements.
Tips for Using Affirmations:
- Repeat your affirmation multiple times throughout the day. You can’t repeat affirmations enough, either out loud or in your mind.
- Write your affirmation out on sticky notes and post them where you'll see them so that you’re continuously reminded to say your affirmation.
- Commit to silently saying your affirmation as you’re doing an activity that you normally do without much thought, such as brushing your teeth. While you’re brushing your teeth continue to repeat your affirmation over and over again in your mind.
- Stand in front of a mirror and speak your affirmation to your reflection.
- Use the calendar on your phone and add your affirmation at different time slots throughout the day, setting each one as a reminder. When the alert goes off you'll see the affirmation pop up. This is an easy way to remember to repeat your affirmation.
Your beliefs, thoughts, and the words you speak have power and they help create the life you live. Choose good ones that promote what you desire.
Do you love affirmations as much as I do? Leave a comment and let me know.
Looking for more tips to help you live well? Check out Your Live Well Journey - The Podcast, every episode offers ways to help you improve your self-care.