"Forget your past, forgive yourself, and begin again right now."
How many times have you rolled your eyes or nodded in agreement when you hear someone say, “Do you do daily affirmations and positive self-talk? It will change your life!”? You might have even engaged in a conversation about how you are definitely going to try it, only to walk away with no real intention of ever doing it. Maybe you don’t even know where to start.
The thought of talking to yourself or standing in the mirror and being your own cheerleader as you say positive things to yourself seems cheesy and a little lame. I know—I used to think the same thing. How can changing the words that no one else hears change your life?
Changing the voice you hear in your head by interrupting it with positive affirmations helps the subconscious deliver results when you aren’t even thinking about it.
Psychology Today published an article by Leena S. Guptha titled, “"To Affirm or Not Affirm" Self-Affirmations = Self Help” Guptha states that:
“The subconscious mind, however, cannot differentiate between negative and positive, or between what is real and imagined. For example, if we want to be successful, we cannot say things like ‘I don’t want to be a failure.’ The subconscious mind will act upon the word ‘failure,’ ignoring the word ‘don’t,’ and actualizing the undesired result. We must choose what we share with our subconscious mind carefully, and that is why positive affirmations are so critical.”
I had to start practicing daily affirmations and positive self-talk because I found myself allowing my mind to wander off into a negative place and I wouldn’t even be aware of it. I would find myself in a vortex of paralyzing and horrible thoughts, worrying about what unimaginable things could happen to the people I love.
I would sometimes sit and cry from all the thoughts I would have. I had to do something to break the pattern and become more aware of where I was allowing my mind to wander.
This is when I started daily affirmations and positive self-talk. I started small. I chose 3 sayings a day that echoed my truths when I said them out loud. It was a little awkward at first. I tried to tie the daily mantra to another task I did every day to help it become more routine for me. I would practice saying them while I was running or in the shower. I wasn’t sure it would even work for me, but I still continued to practice. In about 3 weeks I started to become aware of some changes happening in my life.
At first, I was sleeping better. Because I wasn’t so tired, I was more in tune with what I was thinking and feeling. I wasn’t worrying as much! It felt freeing to finally be in control of my thoughts again.
I would have random bursts of positive thoughts throughout my whole day. That never happened before. People seemed to be drawn to me more. I don’t know if this was happening before (probably because I was so consumed with worry, I wasn’t aware of how my energy was affecting other people). I was more grounded, calmer and loving, which made me a better mom, wife and friend. Then, my self-confidence took off!
It was like each time my mind would complete one positive stage, I would level up to the next one. I had never felt so great—until I didn’t. I got overconfident and believed that I had reached a maximum level of enlightenment, so I stopped practicing daily. Immediately, I started to regress.
I sat up in bed, had my arms wrapped around my legs and my head resting on my knees. I woke up with worry. I hadn’t felt this way in too long, so it was a little off-putting. I was wracking my brain trying to think of what was different. It was in this moment that I finally understood the meaning of the word “daily” in daily affirmations. It seemed so simple, yet I chose to ignore it and was paying the price for it.
I started again right away! The good news is that the brain has muscle memory, so it didn’t take long before I started feeling great again. I’m not perfect. I get lazy sometimes, but I always come back to daily affirmations. I have given myself permission to not be perfect. Most important to be gentle and kind to myself.
Before you write me off for sounding just like everyone else, here is what I would ask you:
What have you got to lose if you try?
What will it cost you in a year if you don’t?
When you’re ready to begin, here are some of the positive affirmations that resonate for me:
1. The things that I label as “bad” do not define me but have built me to be the person I am today.
2. I am a warrior.
3. I am the reason someone smiles
4. My quirks make me one of a kind
5. I don’t want or need to look or be like anyone else.
6. I am more than _________ (wife, daughter, mom, friend, employee. Fill in the blank with what resonates for you.)
7. I deserve time just for me.
8. I am worthy of genuine __________ (love, friendship, time, energy. Fill in the blank with what resonates for you.)
9. I will not fill guilty about putting myself first. (OOOO…this is my hardest one of me!)
10. I give myself permission to take time off from work.
11. I will stop breaking promises to myself.
12. I will forgive myself.
13. I will be gentle and kind to myself.
14. I will ask for what I need.
15. I will stop explaining myself.
16. I will let go of the things I can’t control
17. I will come from a place of intention
18. I will stop 2nd guessing my decisions
19. I will be present with others.
20. I will listen more closely.
This list is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to positive affirmations. Click: a complete list of affirmations for this FREE resource I have provided on my website. Since I have discovered this process and am such a believer of the practice, I have added it to the services I provide as a life coach. If you, or anyone you know might want to incorporate or improve on the practice of affirmations, mindfulness, or meditation please visit Cloud 9 Life Coaching for a FREE consultation.
Michele Ogston is a certified intuitive life coach specializing in relationships, purpose, and balance. She provides life coaching sessions to clients and support groups to build confidence and strength from within. Her relationship series, A Look Inside Your Love, is a 4 phase coaching program specifically designed to target relationships and giving you tools to mend your barometer for choosing the right person. After experiencing her own loss through the death of loved ones and a painful divorce, she decided to dedicate herself to encouraging people to live a life that is well-balanced emotionally, physically, and spiritually. She owns Cloud 9 Life Coaching in Northern California, where she lives with her husband, children and fur babies. You can connect with her on Instagram and Facebook @cloud9lifecoaching.