“Belief consists in accepting the affirmations of the soul; unbelief, in denying them.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
Today’s guest post is going to be a 7 part series by my friend Nancy Barry-Jansson
It’s no mystery that I am amazed by the power of positive affirmations, that I design and sell blank affirmations cards, or that it just thrills me to share my knowledge and experiences with affirmations. I first learned about and began using affirmations back in the mid-1980s, and I know some people who have used them long before that. My parents often quoted Norman Vincent-Peale, who of course, was a well-known author and speaker on the topic of positive thinking and affirmations in the first half of the 1900s. And many authors and speakers have followed in his footsteps, including Shakti Gawain, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Jack Canfield, Louise Hay, etc. The list is long! My point is that what I share and talk about is truly nothing new.
And yet, I am always surprised by how many people still do not know about affirmations or understand how they work. It’s astonishing to me, that after all that has been written and taught, that affirmations are still somewhat unknown in this day and age!
For this reason, I am exposing the seven most common myths that exist about affirmations. To begin, for the benefit of those who are new or just don’t know, I’m referring to positive affirmations which can be defined as:
Positive statements, aligned with your personal goals, that are written and spoken with positive emotion in the present tense, helping you change your internal thinking process (the tapes that play in your head) and motivating you (consciously and subconsciously) to create positive mental and physical changes by encouraging positive action.
Affirmations, regularly written and spoken aloud, work because they:
1. Are positive statements, as opposed to negative ones, that make you feel good to say or read and therefore, motivate you in a positive way to take appropriate action.
2. Are written and spoken statements which further embed the (positive) thought deeper into your conscious and subconscious mind, replacing negative thoughts with positive ones..
3. Generate positive emotion, linking the statements to your internal desire to see each desire come into reality. Many people feel true joy when saying their affirmations!
4. Use present tense makes the statement sound “as if” you have already achieved the goal.
5. Harness all your positive energy (reading, writing, thinking) into changing your internal thinking processes by replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.
6. Incorporate repetition. The more you say and read affirmations, the less room your mind has for negative thoughts, and the more your brain begins to believe your goals are attainable which then motivates you consciously and subconsciously to take appropriate action. This happens as your old, possibly unconscious, tapes are replaced by positive, conscious ones.
7. Encourage positive action toward your goals. Without the action, changes can only take place on a mental level, so action is required to make your dreams a reality in your physical world.
The more you know about positive affirmations, the more they seem like miracles—and they are simple, yet highly effective when you follow through with appropriate action! Ok, now that you understand positive affirmations a little better, let’s address the most common myths.Each day, for seven days, I’ll address one myth.
The Power of Affirmations MYTH #1: “I don’t do affirmations.”
Well, if you don’t think you do affirmations, I hate to be the one who bursts your bubble…the truth is that we all are using some kind of affirmation, positive or negative, every moment of our lives. Unfortunately, most people unconsciously replay negative affirmations over and over in their heads to the point that these ideas then become part of their internal tapes.
Subconscious affirmations usually form in our childhood from words and thoughts expressed to us by our families or our peers, and most tend toward the negative side. For instance, my peers taught me that I was a non-conformist and that I was not good looking. My family taught me that it was wrong to spend money frivolously on things that make you happy. As an adult, I used affirmations to correct my thinking. What did you learn from your peers and family while you were growing up?
Even if, by some miracle, you grew to adulthood unscathed by other’s negative thoughts, you need to consider this: Affirmations are everywhere around us in the media, the books and magazines we read, in the TV and radio shows and commercials that we watch (or just listen to), in the lyrics of music we listen to, in the conversations you have with other people.
You can’t avoid them…unless you make a conscious effort to do so by completely isolating yourself! The problem is that most of these external (and subconscious) affirmations are negative, or they don’t relate to positive goals we have for ourselves. Our minds become filled with pointless goals that mean nothing to us and leave us wondering why life seems so empty. If you aren’t consciously creating your own positive affirmations, you are most likely passively absorbing negative affirmations from all around you.
Don’t believe me? Ok, how often have you stopped to analyze the words and message in that song you can’t get out of your head…you know, the one you’ve been singing over and over and over in your head all day? Chances are, those are not thoughts that you would have gone out of your way to think, yet there they are in the words of that song. How many commercials have you seen so many times that you can recite verbatim even though you could care less about the product or service? Many commercials are now written as statements, as though you are the person with the credit problems, the nagging health problem, the mortgage that needs refinancing, or some other financial or emotional woe. Talk about negative affirmations!
Don’t let passive, negative affirmations get you. Decide what is important to you and create your own positive statements that will remind you of their importance. Consciously monitor your thinking, and when you notice a negative thought, confront each thought with an affirmation that points to the reality you want to experience. Taking time to monitor your thoughts can help you weed out the negative ones, and soon you will find positive thought comes effortlessly.
Join us tomorrow for the discussion about Affirmation Myth #2.
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