A New Take on How to Use Positive Affirmations
We’ve all heard about positive affirmations. Using them sounds like a great idea, but are they really that effective?
Positive affirmations have been said to be a powerful tool to enhance your thinking and self-esteem.
But I have a totally different take on them and an alternative strategy that I believe works more effectively.
Have you used daily affirmations before? Whether it’s affirmation quotes, positive affirmation statements, have they worked for you?
If not, don’t judge yourself. There’s nothing wrong with you! There’s just a different approach you could be taking which no one really talks about.
You see most people just perpetuate self-help strategies that everyone is already talking about without really understanding the nature of the brain and how we create our reality.
So now let’s change that! Here’s what you need to know about how to make affirmations actually work for you!
Here are some reasons I gave up affirmations a long time ago:
1. First of all, it’s totally silly to repeat statements that you already view as essentially untrue.
2. Secondly, they are usually based on your negative beliefs. People usually say that the best way to create positive affirmations is to determine where your current thinking is holding you back. They suggest spending time and energy focusing on your self-talk and making a note of all the negative thoughts you think throughout the day so that you can record them and then state those negative beliefs in the positive.
This is fine if you’re only just becoming more aware and not operating from default.
3. Thirdly, our mind can’t tell the difference between what’s real and what’s imagined. Think about it. You can get yourself into a total tizz just by worrying about something that hasn’t even happened (and may not ever). So whilst most people use this as a reason for why it’s a good idea to use affirmations, the reality is that on a subconscious level, you still know that whatever you’re saying, isn’t true, and so all you’re doing is perpetuating that every time you say the new statement. Whilst it’s nice to think that you can think yourself different, you can’t otherwise wouldn’t you have done it already? Exactly.
“I don’t have any friends” in a positive affirmation becomes “I make friends quickly and easily.”
“I can’t get in shape” in a positive affirmation becomes “I find it easy to eat well, exercise, and lose weight.”
If none of that is true for you right now, repeating those statements over and over and over again, is just not going to change things for the long term.
So here’s what I would invite you to try instead:
Turn your affirmations in questions! You can take your list of positive affirmations and then turn them into questions.
Here are the question stems I would recommend using:
- What would it take to….?
- What else could I be or do to…?
- What energy could I be or do to…?
- What else is possible with…?
- What’s preventing me from…?
- What would be fun for me to…?
- If I changed….what would that look like?
1. Keep them open-ended and action-oriented - Make sure that the question stem doesn’t lead to a closed-ended question. You can read more about asking better questions here.
2. Don’t be attached to finding an answer – rather wait for inspiration and ideas and awareness that you may have been avoiding listening to
3. Acknowledge your successes. The changes you experience will be very subtle. You probably won’t even recognize them unless you’re looking for them. Once a week, sit down and ask yourself how things are improving. What changes are you seeing?
If you start to live in the world of question, you’re in for a pleasant surprise! As simple as affirmations can be, so can adding question stems to them, to get you into a flow and course of different action.
Let me know in the comments how it goes!