When I first discovered affirmations in my twenties, I was an anxious, hot mess trying to deal with all the feels from my daily empathic overwhelm. I’d recite affirmations while driving. Self-recorded cassette tapes played on repeat all night while I slept. I’d fill pages of my journals with positive statements. But while my mouth made audacious declarations, my insides churned with disagreement. I struggled with the incongruity between what I was saying and how I was living.
I’d state the affirmation, but my inner BS detector would go off instantly because the words were so far from my reality.
My grossly exaggerated proclamations were more detrimental than helpful. Most simply provoked even greater feelings of scarcity and lack. At least five “ya buts” countered each positive statement because the medicine I administered felt too outrageous to swallow.
After trying to force these contradictions for more years than I care to number, I realized I needed to experience real buy-in to get affirmations to work for me. This meant creating statements that allowed for possibilities instead of triggering reactivity. At least some part of me needed to agree with the words I expressed. For example, “I’m rich and prosperous. All my bank accounts over-flow with more money than I need. I have everything I want,” set off my BS detector in a way that “I welcome prosperity; I choose to claim my value and share my gifts with the world,” did not. The difference is that the first statement can be factually disputed, while the second is about shifting mindset and being open to possibilities. My life eventually caught up with some of my more unbelievable affirmations. As I look back years later, I realize statements that started as wild hopes and dreams have, in fact, manifested. However, I could have saved myself a lot of time and agony if I’d started with more viable affirmations.
A fundamental premise of metaphysics and the Law of Attraction is “what we focus on expands.” It’s more effective to tune in to feelings we want to amplify than it is to fantasize about what life will look like when x-y-z finally happens. When I started to experience success in my business, I began to understand how much more powerful it was to say, “I’m so grateful for my AMAZING clients” when I knew it was true, than to repeat affirmations that reinforced as much doubt as determination.
During the nearly four decades I’ve been working with positive affirmations, I’ve found that there are two basic ways to work with them:
Make bold declarations and watch for the push back
Once they surface, keep digging until you get to the roots of the limiting belief and release it. I like to use EFT, or tapping, to acknowledge and shift these issues.
Compose viable affirmations
They should feel like a stretch, but they should also feel possible. These are the kind I repeat while I walk our pug Bob, write in my journal, and speak aloud while tapping through all the EFT points.
I’ve discovered that the most powerful and effective affirmations are created by working through limiting beliefs, clearing the stuff in the way, and then distilling words into a sentence or two that really hit the mark. This is how I developed every single affirmation below. Each one of these started as a limiting belief or challenge for me (or a client).
The following affirmations are some of the jewels we excavated through our efforts:
- I’m worthy of knowing my truth and sharing it with others
- I can recognize and appreciate the prosperity in my life right now
- I’m more amazing than ever before. I love the badass I’m becoming
- It’s okay to set my work aside for a moment to pause and notice all the grace and beauty surrounding me
- I turn my concerns over to Divine Source. Since my higher power is in charge, it’s out of my hands
- It’s safe for me to welcome abundance. There’s plenty in this universe to meet everybody’s needs
- Even if I face challenges, I can release assumptions about how the future will unfold
- My dignity grows in proportion to my vulnerability when I ask for the support I need
- I welcome those who are ready and willing to embrace the best version of themselves
- I can trust my instincts. My sacred heart always reveals the next step
- As I grow, my gifts and resources expand to meet me
Please share which affirmation works best for you in the comments section below. Find out more about Jen on The Wellness Universe!
Jennifer Moore is a featured author in The Wellness Universe Guide to Complete Self-Care, 25 Tools for Stress Relief. Learn more about this book by joining our Book Club.
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