You may not realize how powerful your thoughts and words are. Everything you think and say about yourself can affect the self-outlook you have. There are times when we all feel bad about ourselves – we may foster negative thoughts, have low confidence, regret our past actions, or feel unqualified for future tasks. Negative thoughts can contain serious implications and should be addressed – it is important to fight these harmful thought patterns and transform our thoughts to produce more positivity in our minds.
The way we talk to ourselves matters. Think of the way you talk to yourself as the way you would talk to a loved one. When you love someone, you want to encourage them, boost their self-esteem, and make them feel special. We should always treat ourselves with the same respect and care. One way to practice self-love is to recite positive affirmations to ourselves. These affirmations help to fight negative ideas of ourselves and provide many benefits to our well-being.
Positive affirmations stem from Steele’s research on self-affirmation. According to Steele, self-affirmations are meant to help remind a person of their core beliefs and values. These affirmations help to maintain a person’s integrity and self-concept.
Positive affirmations are meant to benefit a person’s self-concept, as well. Positive affirmations can be said aloud, in our minds, or written down. These affirmations are set in the present tense and are “I” statements. For example, an affirmation that may be used in a time where someone is struggling with Imposter Syndrome can be “I am qualified for the position I have” or “I am knowledgeable in my field.”
Do affirmations really work? The answer is an absolute yes with evidence of scientific research. Self-affirmations can assist in many aspects of our lives. These phrases may seem small, but the power they hold can be highly effective. The more an affirmation is repeated, the stronger it becomes in our mind.
Why do affirmations work? Some studies have attempted to explain the science behind self-affirmations. Research suggests that when engaging in positive affirmations, participants “showed increased activity in key regions of the brain’s self-processing…and valuation …systems.” This means that when the participants were affirmed, the regions of their brains involved with self-worth (valuation) and their ability to perceive and judge themselves (self-processing) experienced increased activity.
Cognitive research has shown how our brain shapes our behaviors. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy uses positive affirmations to change the way we think, reprogram our mind and remove the old negative beliefs that have been sabotaging us throughout our life. By choosing to think and say positive affirmations, our subconscious is forced into accepting the positive affirmation or reappraising your old affirmations. Simply, if we believe we are worthless, we will behave like we are worthless. If we believe that we are likable, our behaviors would reflect our likability.
Affirmations have been found to help manage stress. When someone deals with stress constantly in their day-to-day life, it can make certain tasks more complicated and challenging. Stress can affect people’s problem-solving abilities. A study by Creswell et al. found that self-affirmations can help benefit people when they are in these crucial situations. Affirmations have also been seen to improve completion of tasks involving executive functioning skills.
Self-Affirmations help boost self-esteem and confidence. You may find yourself indulging in negative thinking about yourselves. With little self-confidence, we often lower our standards or ‘settle’ for what we believe is achievable. Affirmations help you to go against these doubts and reinforce what you are capable of and what you value. Even if you do not feel much of a difference at the time, your negative thought patterns can start to become altered.
Practicing self-affirmations can be accessible and beneficial to all age groups – we deserve to access a positive self-concept at every stage of life. While it is important for families and teachers to do their job in encouraging children, kids can also continue these affirmations on their own. According to Ntshuntshe et al., children can practice self-affirmations to maintain higher self-esteem and confidence.
Treating ourselves with self-compassion and self-love is vital for us to reach true wellness. Many times, it is easy for us to show these loving ways to friends and families but when it comes to practicing these acts towards ourselves, we struggle and self-sabotage. In a study by Lindsay and Creswell, the research showed that affirmations can help improve feelings of self-compassion. Self-compassion involves showing yourself love and grace when you go through hard times or face challenges. Affirmations help promote this kinder way of treating oneself.
Positive affirmations are like acts of kindness and love towards ourselves that build self-esteem and self-belief which will stay with you throughout your life. Creating an inner confidence can shape your whole life. As important as it is for others to validate your feelings, it is just as important that you learn to create these positive emotions within yourself and improve your emotional well-being.
Affirmations can help people achieve success. We already talked about how affirmations can aid self-esteem. Self-Esteem is a big component of reaching success in our lives- if we think highly of ourselves, we will have more confidence. This confidence will help us believe that we can achieve and reach our goals. According to Ferradás et al.’s study, high self-esteem motivated college students. Participants had more drive to further their academics abilities.
A great benefit of positive affirmation is how accessible it is – you can participate in reciting these mantras anytime and anywhere you go! You can repeat after a video or audio recording out loud or quietly. You can write down all affirmations and read them in the morning to boost your confidence or in the evening to empower yourself.
Positive Affirmations should be practiced daily. Repeating these statements to yourself can be beneficial in creating a more successful trajectory of your days.
The best way to include these affirmations in your life is by finding a time during the day that works best for you. A great way to implement affirmations is by including them in your morning and night routines. You can write your affirmations in a journal and read them over when you wake up and before you go to sleep. Another great way to allocate this time can be to recite them before or during each meal- if you are someone who eats three times a day, this will triple your affirmation engagement for the day!
Try to find or create affirmations that resonate with you and your current situation in life. There are many different types of positive affirmations that can be used. Think of what is important to you and what aspects of your life you wish to focus on while you practice these declarations. For example, if you are someone who wants to attract more friends in your life, you can say a statement like, “I am attracting high-quality relationships and people into my life.”
Come up with a list of positive affirmations to say everyday. Whether they are positive affirmations for success, for anxiety, for depression, for confidence, for self-esteem, for self-love, or body positive affirmations, they can help you to actively use positive thinking to remodel your mind.
“I am happy”
“I am attracting happy experiences”
“My happiness shines through me and reaches everyone I meet”
“I am successful”
“I am qualified for my position”
“I am a dedicated worker who contributes so much to my career”
“I am attracting an abundance of love”
“I embody love”
“I share love with everyone I come across”
“I am enough”
“I am more than enough”
“I am worthy”
“I am attracting high-quality relationships and people into my life”
“I will find a relationship that is meant for me”
“I am a good friend who deserves good people in my life”