Do Positive Affirmations Really Work? (+110 Powerful Examples)
Do you remember that Friends episode in which Chandler’s stop-smoking tape has the part in which it says ‘I’m a strong, confident woman’? Obviously, the gender confusion is here for the sake of comedic plot, but such positive affirmations in real life can help us boost our self-confidence.
How often do you tell yourself that you’re a strong, confident person? It might sound a bit metaphysical, but your life will look the way you feel and, more importantly, how you talk about yourself.
Here it’s time to separate your and self. When you’re uttering positive affirmations, you’re approaching yourself from outside, i.e. as if you’re someone else.
The purpose of this text is to discuss positive affirmations to great detail, by providing numerous examples, as well as different points of view regarding this topic.
1. THE DEFINITION OF POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS
Many people are struggling with negative thoughts when they need to show their abilities at work, at home, or in any other social context.
What’s more, these self-depreciating attitudes about oneself don’t demand a social situation. Sometimes you’ll be thinking that you can’t do anything right, without even having to be exposed to the eye of the public.
The main problem for people who perceive themselves in an unpleasant way is that this approach often prevents them from achieving more than they’re doing at that moment.
Positive affirmations are a great tactic to make gradual, yet constant progress in turning yourself into a positive person who doesn’t sabotage themselves.
You can start by uttering simple supportive sentences to your inner self, such as ‘You can do it!’ or ‘Come on, pull yourself together!’, or anything similar that will boost your self-confidence. Writing down several positive affirmations and repeating them daily is a great beginning of a life-changing process that should make you attract only positive things.
At this initial stage, you can listen to Louise Hay’s affirmations and try to use them in order to change the way you think about yourself. Her approach to positive affirmations helped many people with their negative attitudes.
If you’re new to the idea of positive affirmations, you might think that all this sounds nice, but there can be a grain of skepticism when it comes to their practical use. Although you have the right to have a different opinion, trying to give them a chance would already be a sign that you’re climbing the ladder of open-mindedness.
People who deal with a lot of negativity in their mind are more likely to discard new ideas than positive people or those who approach new concepts in a neutral way.
By putting aside that bitter cynic inside you, you’re already going to prepare a funnel that will let some of these refreshing ideas into your mind.
Displaying a cynical attitude in the social context is one of the most widespread ways to express dissatisfaction either with your own life or the people around you.
In other words, bitterness is expressed in order to tell others that you’re unhappy. This emotional pain that negative people are coping with feeds both generates negative thinking and leeches on it.
Many of us have been through some tragic events or traumatic experiences. If not treated on time, such things can change your mind for good. The more vulnerable and isolated you feel, the more negativity you’re producing. As a result, most of the things you do are marked with the I-can’t-do-this attitude.
The study ‘Effects of exercise and self-affirmation intervention after traumatic brain injury’, which researched the effects of physical exercise and a self-affirmation intervention on the people who have suffered a brain injury, shows that this combination has improved their physical and mental state.
Positive affirmations can help you build a firewall against such a way of thinking and eventually erase it from your head.
You can go through some healing positive affirmations for people who have experienced an emotional trauma on the Healing-Affirmations website and soothe the pain you’re feeling.
2. WHO NEEDS POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS
Claiming that only the people who have experienced an emotional trauma can benefit from positive affirmations is clearly an understatement.
People from all social groups and generations sometimes need a bit of self-boost, in order to improve their everyday lives or practical work performance.
Unlike some rooted opinions, even successful people don’t always observe the world in a positive way.
For example, the CEOs of large companies are under a tremendous amount of stress. Every day they’re making decisions that affect the lives of millions of people. Further, they’re required to achieve certain business results in order to keep their business rolling.
Because of that, successful people don’t linger on negativity and self-pity even when they feel them.
What they do instead is focus on positive thoughts and the solutions for their problems.
The article ’10 Ways Successful Leaders Think Differently’ on Inc.com talks about the ways business leaders overcome difficulties. Among other things, they concentrate on the positive results of their efforts and teamwork to achieve their goals.
As for teamwork, it’s also an efficient way to share both the stress and the responsibility and cope with them in a more convenient way. What’s more, in a well-organized team, people will support one another and heap praises when they achieve positive business results. Further, they’re here to comfort one another in case they don’t accomplish everything they planned. That’s why the family is the key team of every society and why companies organize their employees in teams.
In the video below, you can listen to some affirmations for businesspeople and entrepreneurs that can help you alleviate the effects of stress and improve your decision-making process.
Apart from business professionals, smart people often face some difficulties untypical for every John and Jane Doe, as described in the article ’10 Problems Only Smart People Have (and How to Deal with Them Efficiently)’ on our blog.
For instance, when you’re smart, you’re more likely to be well aware of all the things you don’t know.
Knowing how much you still need to learn to reach perfection could have a negative effect in the way you think.
This is even more obvious if you’re surrounded by people who don’t understand you. They could even think that you’re arrogant because you’re always trying to push the envelope and learn something new.
A great example of such people are high school students, especially geeks and other similar kids who don’t fit into the frame proscribed by their peers.
Apart from them, intelligent adult people can also experience some similarly uncomfortable situations at work or among their relatives.
We’ve already mentioned the negative effects of emotional traumas. Divorced people make a large part of this group, especially women who stay alone with their children.
All these people need positive affirmations, which is why many therapists pay special attention to their needs.
In addition to being supported by professionals, these people will also appreciate the support and positive vibes from their close friends and relatives.
By pointing to their positive personality traits and social skills, you’ll contribute to their own paradigm shift from negative thinking to positive affirmations.
3. WHY WOULD AFFIRMATIONS WORK?
Affirmations will work best when they’re conceptualized and structured.
Of course, you can develop a more positive view of the world if you boost your confidence from time to time via affirmations.
Nevertheless, this approach isn’t a system, but a set of randomly distributed affirmations. Sometimes they might work well, and on some other occasions, you’ll keep feeling in the same negative way.
In order to make affirmations more efficient and beneficial for your life, it’s recommended that you create a system of affirmation distribution.
Develop your system of affirmations
Roland Alexander, a Ph.D. in psychology, suggests that you start constructing this system by noting down the negative things you’ve heard about yourself from your family members and friends. At this point, it’s crucial not to judge the quality or validity of their remarks. The purpose of this process is to simply recognize the negative qualities noticed by several different people.
According to Doctor Alexander, the next step is to write down a set of your positive qualities. Here you should be as honest to yourself as possible and include only those truly positive things about yourself. These will also be the first positive affirmations that you’re going to write and apply within this technique.
What’s important to do next is to keep repeating the same set of affirmations three times a day. You can do it while you’re having a shower in the morning, during the lunch break or when you’re doing your evening walk. It’s also wise to write them down, so that you remember to utter all of them every time you’re doing your affirmation session.
Doctor Alexander also suggests that you include a person who you trust into the affirmation process. This can be your partner, a friend or a coach. He or she will repeat your affirmations after you. That way, you’re not only going to work with your self, but you’ll be going through an external affirmation, as well. In case you don’t have such a person, talking to yourself in the mirror is a handy option.
Also, you can learn more about these steps from Doctor Alexander’s article ‘5 Steps to Make Affirmations Work for You’ on Psychology Today.
Changing the negative subconscious thoughts
According to the article ‘The Power of Affirmations’ regarding the functionality of affirmations on the Louise Hay websites, affirmations aren’t only autosuggestive techniques that have a current impact on our behavior and mood. If applied regularly and properly, they’re the entrance to the subconscious part of your mind. We all have some deep-rooted beliefs about ourselves, the world around us, and our role in it. Most of them were formed when we were little children.
Growing up and becoming an adult member of society requires filtering these attitudes and changing the ones that have a negative effect on our lives. The more innate negative thoughts and attitudes you replace with more positive ones, the more likely you are to take a better place in this world and society.
By uttering affirmations, you’re telling yourself that you’re a valuable person who possesses certain qualities. The more positive affirmations you apply, the more self-confident you’ll feel.
It’s also important to emphasize that negative statements work on the same principle. In other words, if you keep repeating negative and self-depreciating things, you’re going to intensify the negativity that you feel.
4. PRACTICAL POSITIVE TAKEAWAYS FOR A BETTER LIVING
Now that we’ve explained what positive affirmations are and how they work, we’re moving to the peak of this article: 100 affirmations that will make you feel more positive and contented with yourself.
They’re going to be organized in five different categories. That way, it will be easier for our readers to find the ones that can help them in their transformation from a negative to a positive person.
1. I am a beautiful person.
2. I am able to love.
3. I deserve to love and be loved.
4. I love my personality.
5. I love my body.
6. I don’t need perfection for beautiful love.
7. I appreciate myself.
8. I am able to love unconditionally.
9. I deserve unconditioned love.
10. I am in love with my mind.
11. My self is worth being loved.
12. I accept and love all my personality traits.
13. I believe in myself and in other people’s love.
14. When I am positive about love, others follow suit.
15. My high self-confidence attracts positive emotions.
16. I will talk positively about my feelings in front of others.
17. I am in love with falling in love.
18. When someone tells me they love me, I politely accept the compliment.
19. Sharing love makes this feeling grow without limits.
20. I believe in honest, pure love between two people.
21. Every problem has a solution.
22. Think divergently if you want to solve a problem.
23. I accept new challenges.
24. I deserve to live a dignified life.
25. My boss needs to appreciate me for my achievements.
26. I don’t accept promotions based on personal sympathy.
27. I want to learn from successful people.
28. I appreciate every business success I make.
29. I thank God for the good decisions I make.
30. I follow my guts when there’s no rational solution to a problem.
31. I always take the responsibility for my decisions.
32. I share my success with my employees and partners.
33. I never make decisions that aren’t in line with my agenda.
34. My success inspires me and moves me forward.
35. A failure isn’t a reason to fall into despair.
36. If I don’t succeed, I’m going to work harder to make it better next time.
37. I always expect to successfully manage my business tasks.
38. I am open-minded and flexible with my business collaborators.
39. I love to leave my comfort zone and start something challenging from scratch.
40. I don’t work only for money, but it only comes as a reward for my effort.
41. I feel unconditioned love for my children.
42. I am always here for my family.
43. My partner is my friend, my lover, and my support.
44. I don’t share my personal traumas with my children.
45. I always support my children’s dreams.
46. My family members know that they can rely on me.
47. I always express compassion to my children.
48. I tell my children that I love them every day.
49. I set a positive example for my family members.
50. My family comes before any other duties or people.
51. I encourage open communication about everything in my family.
52. I show my children that the beauty of life is in small things.
53. My children are clever, independent, and curious.
54. I don’t impose my ambitions to my children.
55. I spend quality time with my family.
56. I am always planning new experiences for my children.
57. I like to have lunch and dinner with my family whenever it’s possible.
58. I encourage my children to speak their minds during family hangouts.
59. My family and I laugh a lot.
60. I want my children to become open-minded and warm people.
61. I help my children with their problems in school.
62. I like to listen to other people and hear about their experiences.
63. I want to make new friendships.
64. I enjoy spending time outdoors.
65. I like going to the movies and theater.
66. I am calm when in the company of other people.
67. I am a self-confident, social person.
68. I always speak in a clear and polite way.
69. My jokes are here to entertain, not to insult.
70. I can cope with harsh humor in social situations.
71. I am patient when I’m waiting in line.
72. People appreciate my communication skills.
73. I keep the eye contact when I talk to other people.
74. I can deal with complex social situations.
75. I feel good when I’m having coffee with my friends.
76. I like to take part in discussions with other people.
77. I support my claims with facts.
78. I learn new social skills through communication with others.
79. I feel relaxed at parties.
80. I enjoy meeting new people.
81. I remember the faces and names of the people I meet.
82. Socializing is beautiful.
83. I am a brave person.
84. I like accepting new challenges.
85. There’s a solution to every problem.
86. I can deal with every difficulty.
87. I can remove every obstacle.
88. I am able to put my fears aside.
89. My self-esteem grows as I remove negative thoughts.
90. I let my dreams trample down my fears.
91. My courage feeds on my bold behavior.
92. I can solve every problem with powerful and focused thinking.
93. I control my fears.
94. If I feel anxious, I take a few deep breaths to clear my mind.
95. When I feel fear, I react in a positive and affirmative way.
96. I am a decisive person who takes the initiative.
97. I know that fears are a normal thing that I can cope with.
98. I want to turn my fears into my advantage.
99. Learning about myself from difficulties makes me a better person.
100. I have enough courage to resolve any problem.
Bonus affirmations from successful people
In addition to these core 100 affirmations, we’ve also prepared the additional list of ten affirmations used by successful people in dealing with their daily challenges.
101. I talk when I want to share something useful.
102. Listening to other people will pay off one day.
103. I believe in my decisions and plans.
104. I will use a defeat to learn my lesson.
105. I appreciate every little success I make.
106. I always move forward, rather than rest on laurels.
107. I do everything I can right now.
108. I will take the plunge into the unknown.
109. I will help the deprived.
110. I will make a difference in my life.
5. WHY AFFIRMATIONS MIGHT NOT WORK?
Some positive effects of positive affirmations have been scientifically proven, as shown in this article.
Nevertheless, some others are believed to be helpful, but without a scientific confirmation. Many people have reported that positive affirmations have helped them deal with their negative thoughts, but these are subjective impressions.
Naturally, because of their ambiguous nature, affirmations are sometimes rejected by some ordinary people and psychologists.
For instance, some experts claim that not letting the negative thoughts you feel out could result in ever lower self-esteem and worse mood. If you’re feeling down, but you’re trying to cover this heap of bad thoughts with positive illusions, it won’t solve your problems.
What’s more, repeating that you’re a loved and important person when you don’t believe in what you’re saying could lead to a confusion in your head.
That’s why Carmen Isa is in her article ‘Why Positive Affirmations Don’t Work’, in Huffington Post suggests that you should first let off some steam and negative thoughts before you start applying positive affirmations in your life.
Likewise, Josh Steimle claims that saying positive affirmations without honestly believing in your own words leads to further deception. If you’re aware that you’re lying to yourself, you can’t expect that your negative thoughts will simply vanish.
We need to accept that it’s completely natural that we sometimes feel negative emotions. Still, if your everyday life is flooded with negative thoughts and comments about yourself, it’s time to make a change.
Moving to the positive pole of your mind is a must if you want to become a more confident and successful person. Repeating some impactful positive affirmations day after day is one of the ways to transform your negative mind into a positive one.
But it takes some time to get to know yourself and your expectations in order to find the right set of affirmations. You can do that on your own, which is where this article will be more than useful.
As an addition or alternative, you can work on your positive affirmations with professionals, but always be careful and collaborate only with certified and experienced psychologists and life coaches.
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