Let’s talk about affirmations, and how they so did not help me when I was feeling like actual crap last week.
Affirmations are statements you say to yourself repeatedly, whether it’s out loud, in your head or written down.
Negative affirmations are those negative thoughts that pop up about our situations and our self-image, time and time again. Every time you describe yourself using the words, ‘I am’, whatever follows after that is an affirmation.
The things we repeatedly say to ourselves become beliefs. These beliefs are key to what we manifest into our lives.
So if you’re constantly saying things like:
‘I am stupid.’
‘I am ugly.’
‘I am so unlucky.’
You are going to attract situations in your life that make you feel more stupid, more ugly and more unlucky.
Um. Who wants that??
This is why positive affirmations are commonly used to help you transform negative situations and beliefs. They work in the same way:
Science supports the power of positive affirmations. Affirmations are basically a form of auto-suggestion, and when practiced deliberately and repeatedly, they reinforce chemical pathways in the brain, strengthening neural connections.” – Live Bold and Bloom
So basically, the more we engage in positive self-talk, the more our brains will start to believe it. And as you know:
It’s important to choose your affirmations very carefully, even the positive ones. Because not all positive affirmations have such a positive effect.
When positive affirmations have a negative effect
Last week I had a down day.
A proper down day. I just woke up in the morning and I felt super sad.
So I did what I always do when I feel like that and started trying my best to turn it around.
I listened to some Abraham Hicks as I got ready in the morning, and when I got home from work I did a few of my mood-boosters, you know, got a good workout in, did some journaling and filled in my gratitude journal for the day.
I started to feel better, but I still didn’t feel 100%, so I decided to end my day with some positive affirmations. Instead of using my own, I searched on YouTube and found a series of affirmations called ‘Manifest while you sleep’ (I highly recommend this series, despite this next part by the way).
It sounded like such a good idea. I pop my headphones in and have a snooze while this man with a very soothing, whispery-like voice and an American accent speaks affirmations to my subconscious mind and I wake up feeling like a new woman.
Except, that’s not quite how it worked out.
The man said I shouldn’t worry if I fall asleep. I should allow myself to drift off – my subconscious will still hear everything he says, he said.
So I got into a nice place of relaxation and started listening – but as soon as the affirmations started, again, I couldn’t drift off.
And then something worse happened – I started to feel frustration.
As he repeated these affirmations, I could hear my mind arguing back with him.
He’d be like, “You are in a loving, stable relationship with your perfect partner,”
And I’d be like, “No I’m not, I’m single AF!!!”
I laugh now, but actually, some of these affirmations were really making me feel bad. They were stirring up even more emotions, because they were reminding me of what I didn’t have.
They were frustrating me because they were doing the opposite of what I had intended them to do. They were causing me to think more negative thoughts.
So I had to turn it off. I wasn’t able to connect with the affirmations, therefore I wasn’t able to relax enough to sleep.
(Quick side note – this YouTube series and the man that makes them, Dauchsy, is AMAZING. I could not recommend falling asleep to these enough. You just have to find the topic that works for you. I have seen real shifts in mindset from using these affirmations!)
Never use affirmations that you don’t believe
Simply repeating “I am a millionaire” every night will not make you a millionaire.
Telling yourself that you are in a beautiful relationship with the love of your life will not do any good when you’re in an unhappy relationship or single as ever.
Don’t play yourself!
Using affirmations that you know aren’t true will not help your situation in any way – if you don’t believe it, you can’t attach a feeling to it. It can’t make you feel good, hopeful, positive or happy – therefore it will not work.
Your brain will probably react the same way mine did – it will come up with counterthoughts and arguments because you can’t lie to yourself and that’s exactly what you do when you use affirmations like these.
And then you end up thinking negative thoughts, thinking about everything you don’t have that this affirmation is telling you that you do.
Positive affirmations that are actually positive
Here are some examples of affirmations I love for manifestation and why they work.
I am the creator of my life. I build its foundation and choose its contents.
What an amazing reminder to stay positive, and reinforce the fact that you that you are in total control of your life.
The perfect partner is on his/her way to me and will arrive sooner than I expect.
If you’re looking for love, this is the affirmation for you!
Your brain can’t argue with it – who says it isn’t true?
How do you know that the perfect partner isn’t on their way to you when you don’t know what’s around the corner?
This doesn’t have to start with ‘The perfect partner’ by the way. Swap this with ‘Good things’, ‘Money’ or whatever it is you’re trying to manifest.
I am fully open to the flow of abundance in my life now.
So you might not be a millionaire just yet – but if you want to make more money, and abundance is something that you’re looking to manifest, then this affirmation is not a lie!
You are open to the flow of abundance in your life, and repeating an affirmation like this will open your eyes to more opportunities to increase abundance.
I have the qualities I need to be successful
When you think about what success means to you, and what you need to achieve to be successful in your own right, what do you think of? Whether it’s reaching the top of your career or starting a family, if it’s what you want the most, you are aligned with it.
You feel that desire and passion for a reason. Your soul wants it. So guess what? You will have been created with everything you need to achieve it. The universe will bring you all the resources and connections you need to build on your weaker areas, leading you towards your goal, natural progression. That’s what makes this affirmation so true!
I deserve to be happy and live an amazing life
Don’t you? Of course, you do! This affirmation is simple, yet so powerful because it is true and when you start to believe it – it will lead you to make the best decisions for yourself and your life.
It will lead you to more things that make you happy and give you the confidence to say no to anything that doesn’t feel right to you. That can be hard sometimes!
I am blessed
You are blessed. Even if you don’t feel it right now, this affirmation is true for you. If you’re reading this now, you’re reading from a phone, tablet or computer – so already that makes you blessed.
Not everyone has access to these kinds of things – things we take for granted. When you say this to yourself it will encourage you to think about the blessings you have in your life – family, friends, food, clean water – anything. And when you’re grateful, you attract more things to be grateful for.
Mistakes and setbacks are stepping stones to my success because I learn from them.
You do learn from your mistakes. Whether you feel like you’re learning from them or not, you will always remember them – and that memory will influence a decision you make next time around.
As for setbacks – they help too. I always say, when one door closes, another one opens. Think about the doors that have shut in your life and where you are now – do you see the reason why yet? If not, you will soon.
An affirmation like this is good for turning negative thoughts around and helping you to look on the bright side of your situation.
I choose to be proud of myself.
True! Because you can always make that choice. And you should always make that choice. Think about goals you’ve achieved, things you’ve done that you never thought you would. No matter how big or small. There is something you can be proud of. This affirmation can help boost confidence and self-esteem, but ‘proud of myself’ can be swapped with anything you want, and choose, to be!
These affirmations work because you can apply them to your current situation right now, and they’re still true.
They describe what you’re living today, but in a positive and inspiring way.
And that is the true power of a positive affirmation.