Want to gain confidence and achieve self acceptance?
Affirmations can come to your rescue. They are often praised for achieving the seemingly impossible.
Affirmations are short, positive statements that motivate and encourage you. When these brief phrases are repeated frequently, they affect our conscious and subconscious mind and can end up creating positive changes in the way we think, feel and act.
Research suggests that affirmations effectively rewire the brain by impacting our neural pathways. A 2016 study by Cascio et al. revealed that certain neural pathways are increased when people practice self-affirmation tasks.
Affirmations have a lot of power attached to them, they help in the rewiring of the human brain as they activate the reward centers of the brain - the regions that get activated in response to other pleasurable experiences. They also help in reducing the cortisol levels of the human body - which, in turn, can help you in alleviating stress. Affirmations can infuse you with positive emotions like joy, peace, hope and even gratitude. Practicing affirmations can make you feel better and appreciate the little things life has to offer.
Affirmations work because when we are repeating an affirmation about a certain topic regularly, we are putting that topic at the front of our mind, and eventually, take action to help make the affirmation true.
Here are some guidelines that can help you in framing affirmations and making the most out of them.
Decide what you want
You could pick affirmations about literally any goal or functional area you want to do good in. You might want to become more confident about yourself, or maybe have stronger relationships with people around you. Having a goal in mind can make your affirmation practice more focused and effective.
Use the first person and use present tense
Ensure that your affirmation is about YOU and the easiest way to do this is to utilize statements that have the word “I” in them. For instance, “I am capable of achieving good grades”. Such statements can help you feel in charge of your life. Instead of saying, “I will be confident”, try shifting perspective and saying “I AM confident”. By believing that something you want is already true, will increase the chances that you are more likely to engage in behaviors to achieve it.
Repeat your affirmations slowly or maintain a diary
When you practice your affirmations, be slow and gentle. You could say the statements out loud, go over them in your mind or even write them. Take deep breaths while practicing your affirmations. If you want, you could even close your eyes and place your hand on your heart while repeating or rehearsing these statements. Spending even 1 minute practicing your affirmations this way can leave you feeling calm, at peace and more positive. Journaling can work for affirmations, too. Instead of repeating your affirmations out loud, you could try writing them down for your comfort. Jotting down your affirmations can make you process them more deeply.
Set reminders for yourself
When it comes to affirmations, consistency is a major key! To remain consistent and hold yourself accountable, you can set reminders for yourself. Write down your affirmations on note cards, stick these cards up on the wall of your dressing room or even set a core affirmation statement as the wallpaper on your phone. You can even try anchoring it with an existing habit in your daily routine. For example, you could repeat your affirmation every morning while having coffee or tea. Attaching new habits to existing ones helps you keep up the practice and be consistent.
Turn your can't into can
Often one struggles with negative self-talk which impacts humans. In such a case, note down the persistent thoughts or beliefs that are bothering you. After that choose an affirmation that would be the opposite of that particular thought or belief.
For example, if you often find yourself thinking that, "I'm not talented enough to progress in class," turn this around and write a positive affirmation such as, "I am a skilled and hardworking person."
Start your day with affirmations
Starting your day by repeating affirmations can put you in the right frame of mind to tackle whatever the day brings with it. This will also serve as your daily dose of positivity, productivity and hope.
Anchor them to a place of discomfort
You can even focus your affirmations on the area you feel uncomfortable in. For instance, if you frequently experience back pain, make it a habit to repeat to yourself regularly: “My back is strong and healthy” or “I will let go of tension from my back”. Over time, repeating these affirmations can help you develop a deeper connection between the body and mind, and can also help you build strength during turbulent times.
End your day with affirmations
Just as you can start your day on a positive note, you can even close the day on a positive note. Before bed, repeat your affirmations a few more times. They could even focus on gratitude. Doing this will fill your mind with positive thoughts and can even help you feel good quality sleep.
When it comes to the power of affirmations, no one size fits all. You have to explore different types of affirmations to identify the ones that work for you. Remember that you, yourself have the power to change your life for the better. Affirmation is not a one day habit and requires a lot of consistency, the affirmation can help you not feel overwhelmed by clear negative thoughts and instead, lead a happier and more fulfilling life. You can access the self-help content that is available in our curated content library to learn strategies to learn various strategies to formulate affirmations and their power. You can even reach out and drop a message in HappiCHAT whenever you feel like venting and sharing your feelings.