“Thoughts are energy. A drop of water, so cool and gentle can wear away a rock with repetitive drops. We are like rocks and our affirmations are like drops of water, wearing away the stubborn blocks within us one drop at a time. Repeating affirmations several times a day may be necessary in the beginning, depending on your need.”Sabrina Kastur, A Little Book of Affirmations
Do you talk to yourself the same way you talk to your best friend?
People tend to talk to themselves negatively, focusing on all the things they can’t do or don’t know rather than on all the amazing things they’ve accomplished and how much they’ve grown as a person.
It’s time for you to flip that around and remember that you really are the best friend you can have (sorry actual best friends, out there!) and you need to start talking to yourself like you realize it.
Positive self-talk is important to both your happiness and your success. The way you talk to yourself impacts your emotions and behaviors.
One popular tool to help you practice positive self-talk and build and your positive mindset is the affirmation. This is a short statement you can repeat throughout your day.
With enough repetition, it will begin to infiltrate your subconscious mind and move you to internalize a more realistic and positive belief.
Let’s discover how to use positive affirmations to develop a positive mindset that’s primed for success.
What are Affirmations?
Making affirmations work for you starts with a clear understanding of what they are.
An affirmation is a concise positive statement written as if you are saying it and addresses a personal characteristic you may have, wish to have, or want more of or something you want to achieve.
Many affirmations also include content that prompts your mind to ponder the characteristic in self-reflection, but most are usually short, easy-to-remember sentences that you can repeat to yourself each day.
How Affirmations Work
The way affirmations work is that the words you drill into your head act as a trigger to your subconscious to act in a way that makes the mantras ring true.
Just as your negative self-talk is repeated throughout your days and influences your life in a detrimental fashion, proactively implementing helpful self-talk will accomplish just the opposite. Repetition of your affirmations can inspire you to act as you’re saying you do.
The more you repeat your positive affirmations, the better. However, there are specific times when it will benefit you the most to put these words into action.
“Negative self-talk and negative affirmation can keep you anchored in old thought patterns and identities.”― Bryant McGill, Simple Reminders: Inspiration for Living Your Best Life
When to Use Affirmations
You’ve probably used positive affirmations already without even realizing it. Hyping yourself up before public speaking, asking someone out on a date, or before an exam are all examples of times when we instinctively use affirmations.
Here are a few other times when you might find using positive affirmations useful.
To boost confidence
When you feel worried or fearful before an important event, pull out a mantra to boost your confidence. Repeating it will allow you to get started on a positive note, which will likely continue throughout the event.
To finish a project
You can also utilize this positive self-talk to push you along when finishing a certain project seems just too overwhelming. Remind yourself of your strength or of the reward that awaits at the finish line, and you will feel more in control of your assignment rather than being overwhelmed or intimidated by it.
To give yourself a pep talk
When you’re experiencing negative feelings about yourself and your situation—such as hopelessness, inadequacy, or unworthiness—repeating a short pep talk can go far in allowing you to see your situation more realistically. You can use affirmations during any time of inner turmoil to turn your attitude around.
How to Use Positive Affirmations & Mantras
Using affirmations is really easy. As I mentioned before, you might already be using negative affirmations, so you’re already familiar with the process. You just need to practice replacing the negative with the positive.
Your affirmations should be short, as long statements are too difficult and making something challenging decreases your chances of following through with its use. Make your mantra short, snappy and to the point.
They should also be targeted to specific aspects you’d like to change. Developing targeted self-talk requires you to identify the areas you’d like to change.
For example, if you’re feeling less than competent lately, be sure to remind yourself of your worth by adding something like, “I am smart, competent and worthy. I add value to my world.”
Notice how this affirmation is made up of two sentences, but they’re both short, easy-to-remember, and work individually as well.
Make a list of your most desired changes, and then add an affirmation for each. Make your phrases meaningful and realistic in order to increase their effectiveness. Be sure to repeat them regularly.
Achieve self-improvement with affirmations
Affirmations are amazing tools for people who want to live life to the fullest but may be struggling with keeping a positive mindset. They confirm the great qualities you already have and help you develop and strengthen the characteristics you want to build.
Affirmations can also provide an endless array of self-improvement topics for reflection. This combination of self-reflection and repetition enables the affirmation to reach your subconscious mind and changes your beliefs and actions, one thought at a time.
“Affirmations are more powerful than requests, for they remind you that you already have what you seek.”― Alan Cohen
Discover new and exciting qualities about yourself
Because life is often a rocky pathway, engaging in ongoing self-discovery can help you better navigate the bumpy parts of your journey by figuring out things about your personal qualities and ways of relating.
When you use these strategies, you’ll not only discover new knowledge while reading affirmations, but you’ll also learn how to apply the new information in your own life in ways that strengthen and benefit yourself.
How to Use Prewritten Affirmations in 5 Easy Steps
You can write your own affirmations or use affirmations that you find in books, on other blogs, or even in journals. Writing your own affirmations is simple, but its own beast, so right now I’ll cover reading and using prewritten affirmations.
These are good when you’re first starting out so you have examples of what an affirmation really is and you may even connect with one that you even didn’t realize you needed.
Since positive affirmations work best if they’re tailored to your specific situation, here are some tips to get the most out of reading prewritten affirmations.
1. Make an effort to clear your mind before reading an affirmation. Ensure you have enough time, like 15 minutes or so, to read, process, and reflect on the affirmation. Then, read through the affirmation.
2. Are you familiar with all the words used in the affirmation? If not, look up any questionable words. Think about how these words relate to the topic.
3. Re-state the affirmation in your own words. This step increases your understanding and retention of the content as your mind mulls over the concepts.
You could say something like, “I think this affirmation is describing the best ways to talk about your feelings with another person. It focuses on being honest and not being afraid to share how you really feel.”
4. Apply the affirmation to your own situations. Ask yourself this: do you really behave, think, or feel as the affirmation suggests?
- If yes, then the affirmation confirms this quality in your mind and helps boost your self-confidence.
- If no, what can you learn from the affirmation? How can you change your actions to make every word ring true?
Reflect on the positive methods in the affirmation to help develop those methods in your own life. Strive to apply the information in similar situations in the future.
5. Recognize that an important function of an affirmation is to encourage you to look within yourself. Effective affirmations usually state you’re skilled at something or can emotionally deal with situations in healthy ways.
“Affirmations take our thoughts to a more protective and powerful place. By affirming good, by affirming daily gratitude, you, yourself will find more peace from giving your thoughts a break from the worry cycle.”― Machel Shull
8 Examples of Positive Affirmations
Your experiences are shaped by your thinking. Even obstacles have a value when you can see it. You can develop convictions that will help you to feel happier and achieve more, regardless of the situation.
Below are some examples of simple but powerful affirmations you can use in your daily life along with an example of how you can apply each one to your own personal experiences. Consider these empowering beliefs that you can start using today to transform your life through the power of positive thinking.
Also, don’t feel like you have to stick to these examples and meanings. If an affirmation has a different meaning to you, stick with that meaning! That’s what makes a truly powerful affirmation that will have an impact on your life.
I understand my potential
You can achieve amazing results when you put your mind to it. Feel excited about reaching your true potential.
I count my blessings
List each thing that you have to be grateful for. Remember to include the smaller items, like warm socks or tart cranberries. Expressing your appreciation reminds you of how rich you are.
I learn from mistakes
You can make setbacks work for you by focusing on the lessons that they contain. Flubbing one job interview can teach you how to ace the next one.
I find meaning in adversity
Tough times can be the most rewarding phase of your life. Know that you can emerge from any challenge with greater wisdom and courage. Look back at the obstacles you’ve already overcome, and reassure yourself that you can handle what’s ahead.
I embrace change
Accept that life is a series of changes. Focus on the present moment, and prepare yourself to adapt to whatever circumstances come your way.
I dream big
Expand your wish list. Setting demanding but attainable goals give you adventures to look forward to each day.
I practice forgiveness
Lighten your load by clearing away any resentment you’re holding onto from the past. Set reasonable boundaries while you respond with compassion when others disappoint you. Pardon yourself too.
I give generously
Sharing your blessings makes you more powerful and joyful. Volunteer in your community and speak kindly to each person you meet today. Buy coffee for your co-workers or give your receptionist a flower.
“Success or failure depends more upon attitude than upon capacity. Successful men act as though they have accomplished or are enjoying something. Soon it becomes a reality. Act, look, feel successful, conduct yourself accordingly, and you will be amazed at the positive results.” — William James A huge part of being able to achieve success […]
8 Useful Positive Affirmations for Entrepreneurs
The following affirmation examples can be used by anyone, but since this is a blog geared towards online entrepreneurs, these can help you build the mental skills needed to persevere as you build your business.
An upbeat attitude increases your happiness and productivity. Question your old assumptions so you can replace them with a new sense of certainty about yourself and your future.
I take responsibility
You are in charge of your life. Hold yourself accountable for the outcomes you create. Celebrate the fact that you have the power to determine your own future.
I apply effort
Figure out your definition of success so you know what is worth working for. Give yourself credit when you’re making progress rather than comparing yourself to others.
I leverage my strengths
You have your own individual strengths that you can draw on. Figure out what you’re good at and what you want to do. Let that knowledge guide your choices.
I connect with others
Moral support counts, too! Surround yourself with loving and encouraging family and friends. Join a community locally or online that caters to entrepreneurs with similar goals or businesses and be sure to actively participate.
I listen to feedback
Ask for feedback so you can enhance your performance and show others that you respect their point of view. You grow faster when you gather solid input that you can translate into action.
I ask for help
Expand your capabilities by building a sturdy support network. Find a business mentor. Ask questions in your entrepreneur community. Save time by dividing up household chores with your spouse and children.
I recognize opportunities
Stay alert for promising openings. You may meet a new friend while you’re standing in line to buy your morning coffee. You may find a business opportunity within an email newsletter.
I try new things
Be open to experimentation. Try a new marketing technique or do something you’ve been afraid to do in your business. You may discover something that works really well for you that might not have for others.
“Positive thinking is powerful thinking. If you want happiness, fulfillment, success and inner peace, start thinking you have the power to achieve those things. Focus on the bright side of life and expect positive results.”― Germany Kent
Practice using affirmations daily
Adopt affirmations as empowering beliefs that build up your confidence and prepare you for greater success. Remember that your statements should be customized to your needs and lifestyle.
Using affirmations to develop a positive mindset is a worthwhile strategy, not just for entrepreneurs, but for anyone who wants to make a mindset shift. With practice, you’ll begin to make a habit of using them.
Soon, it will be easier to remember to pull them out when needed and to develop a routine that works for you.