Affirmations may sound like magical thinking but I can tell you they work. I have used them since I discovered Louise Hay’s books nearly 20 years ago.
The purpose of affirmations is to reprogram your thinking. Let’s say that you need to stand in front of a crowd and deliver a speech. If you keep telling yourself ‘I’m scared, I can’t do this’, chances are you will feel really bad and your confidence will be low. If on the other hand, you tell yourself ‘I deliver a great speech, the crowd really enjoys my talk’, you will obviously feel much better about the task.
Obviously, if you have a real fear of public speaking, you may need more than affirmations but in the case of every day challenges, using affirmations may significantly impact you chances.
How do I use them
I’m just like everyone else and sometimes, my thoughts drag me down to places I don’t want to go. Using affirmations, usually kicks me back into shape.
I’ve been feeling below par most of January with a cough and a cold I only just managed to get rid of. This has affected my thinking and I’ve got myself in a bit of a rut.
This week, I started affirming that I was achieving my key goals. In the past two days, my mood has been much better and I’m starting to think about picking up my exercise regime again.
How to build affirmations
If you’ve not used affirmations before, here’s how to build them. Always speak in the positive. So don’t say: ‘I don’t forget my words’. Say: ‘I deliver a clear and intelligent speech’.
Use the present tense. Don’t say: ‘I will find a great job’. Say: ‘I find a great job’.
Write them down and post them in places where you’ll see them. For example, in front of your computer or around your bathroom mirror.
Then repeat them, repeat them, repeat them.
Does it matter if I don’t believe what I’m saying?
Don’t worry if you can’t quite believe what you’re affirming when you first start. The idea is to reprogram your thinking so this may take a few days, even months.
Just keep saying your affirmations.
Is there a way to make them more effective?
I find that if you record them on a tape and play them to yourself before sleep or when you wake up – basically when your mind is in the alpha state and you are relaxed – they work better.
If you know how to use self-hypnosis with them, even better. If you don’t, just relax and repeat them when you are in that state.
This sounds crazy
Maybe but who cares, it works. Before my book was accepted for publication, I repeated to myself over and over ‘my book is accepted for publication straight away’. This is what happened.
Obviously, I did take the action I needed to take: I sent my proposals to agents and publishers. I didn’t just sit in my living room repeating affirmations. I did both affirmations and action.
I believe that what actually happened is that I started believing that I could achieve my goal so as a result I wrote a confident proposal, pitched well and took the right action.
If you haven’t used affirmations to help with your goals, go ahead, give them a shot. After all, what have you got to lose?