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That’s Affirmative

I am
I am liking affirmations more and more every day.

I confess--I used to kind of hate affirmations.  I wanted to do them and be all enlightened and zen, but they didn't click for me.  They felt silly and fake and I felt silly and fake saying them.  I'd try them out, but instead of feeling buoyed up or motivated, I would feel annoyed.  "That's not true!" I'd think.  Then I'd go off and do something else, often the very thing I was trying to affirm myself out of. Then I started my Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coaching ™ training, and I learned how to actually use affirmations (thank you to my wonderful mentor coach Lisa Dieken for helping me with this!).  Admittedly I don't use them that much still (by now, not using them is a habit), but I like them now and feel like I understand them much better.  I have learned how to help my clients find good, useful affirmations, and I'm enjoying honing my skills in creating them. If you'd like to try working with affirmations, here are some tips to help make them more effective:

  • Create your own affirmations rather than using ones written by someone else; use words you would actually say in conversation
  • If you do want to use an affirmation written by someone else, change the wording so it sounds like something you would actually say
  • Put reminders around to help you remember to use your affirmations so you give them a real chance to work for you
  • If an affirmation isn't feeling right for you, change it or use another rather than try to use one that doesn't feel like you
  • Once you have the wording down, work with an affirmation for at least two weeks before you decide whether or not it's working for you

You might also want to browse through a few of the millions of online pages and articles for more in-depth info on affirmations and how to use them.  And keep an open mind.  You never know what might happen with the right words and attitude!

Extra Questions:  Do you work with affirmations?  What has been your experience with them?

EDIT: I forgot one of the most important points!  But I'm correcting that.

  • Make sure your affirmation is something believable.  For example, if you don't have enough money for the bus right now, saying "I am rich" is probably not something your subconscious is going to believe no matter how you phrase it.  If you are aiming for something very far from where you are, build up to it in increments.  Start with something like "I can pay all my bills," or my favorite money-related affirmation, "I have plenty of money."  Something like "plenty" is good because it can be interpreted many ways and so can be easier to believe but is still a strong word.  If you use an affirmation that you absolutely can't believe in, it won't take you anywhere, so if you aren't finding any belief in you for your affirmation rewrite it and try again.

4 thoughts on “That’s Affirmative

  1. Leslie

    Thanks for this, Kim. I have also had the experience that using affirmations and "positive self talk" mostly make me feel fake and silly. Maybe armed with this new information, I will try again.

    1. Kim

      Leslie, we have to find what makes sense for us, otherwise it just doesn't feel right and won't work. This reminds me, I should have said (and will go back and edit this in) that you need to make your affirmation believable. If you are broke, saying "I am rich" is going to feel fake and silly, and it's going to be so far away from your current reality that there's almost no way you're going to convince yourself that it could be true. A better choice is to build up to "rich" in increments starting with something like "I can pay all of my bills" or "I have plenty of money." (That last one is becoming a favorite of mine.)

  2. Elaine

    You know, this makes total sense. I hate affirmations too. For me they're just shallow pointless words to scribble on your art journal. Your way gives meaning to them! I love it and thank you so much for posting this!

    1. Kim

      Elaine, I'm glad this made sense for you! I think affirmations can be useful. The part that so many of the instructions about them forget to add is that they have to be believable and make sense to the person using them. I hope you find them easier and more useful now.

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