One of the most often asked questions in our society today is… “How can I make effective, positive changes in my life”? Even if your life is going well at this point, there are likely areas where you would like to improve, or unmet goals you are trying to accomplish.
Our core beliefs and attitudes are concealed in our subconscious minds. In order to change those beliefs and create the changes we are seeking, we need to remove the old negative beliefs and replace them with new, positive ones. There are several ways to accomplish this. One of the simplest is the use of positive affirmations. In case you are not familiar with this term, positive affirmations are basically simple phrases you say to yourself over and over again. The purpose is to flood your subconscious mind with the positive, new beliefs so they replace the old negative ones. This is how your beliefs are formed in the first place. Your mind was filled with information you were either told by others or you told yourself.
Please allow me to provide some examples. You may have been told by people in your life that you were dumb or incapable. The more you hear that, the more you believe it. Not only do you believe it, but you live it out accordingly. On the positive side, you may constantly hear from people that you are beautiful. The more you hear it, the more you believe it, and take actions that enhance your beauty. Even if things are not true, your affirmations (whether intentional or not) can make them true. On an extreme level, this is true for people with eating disorders. They are not fat, and no one has told them that they are. However, they lead themselves to believe that they are eating too much, and take negative actions when it comes to eating.
Most of our beliefs have been caused unintentionally. We use affirmations every day, and most of us don’t realize it. On the negative side, we can mostly blame ourselves for the negative beliefs we carry. On the positive side, we have full control of what we affirm to ourselves, and we can use affirmations to consciously change our beliefs.
I’ve shared the great news. We can change our beliefs using positive affirmations. However, there is one more hurdle to face. In many cases, the negative beliefs we have are so engrained in our subconscious, that it takes more than just a few positive words to dig them out. Also, our subconscious is very reluctant to surrender core beliefs. In some cases, people have found that using affirmations not only didn’t help, but created an even more negative situation than before.
How can using positive words make a situation worse? As mentioned, the subconscious is very slow to release established beliefs. As an example, let’s say you are struggling with money. It is because you have a core belief of lack that has been engrained into your subconscious. You try to change that by affirming… “I am rich and have abundant resources”. Your intention is good. You are trying to change your belief. The problem is that, as you say that, your subconscious comes back with ideas like, “who are you kidding? Have you seen your bank account lately? What about that pile of bills?” Or, if you are trying to be healthier, you affirm that you look and feel great. However, your subconscious reminds you how crappy you feel and that you are still overweight. As you are reminded of these negatives, they are brought back into the light, and you place your focus on them (with even more frustration) and more negative follows.
The good news is that there are ways around this, and affirmations can indeed be used to change your thoughts, and ultimately your life. The following are three ways I have learned to use affirmations effectively and have created very positive changes in my own life:
• Keep them short – Some people use longer, more detailed affirmations which help ingrain them into their minds more quickly. I have difficulty remembering the longer ones, so I prefer quick and easy. I have also learned to use short affirmations that my subconscious mind can’t argue with. If I am seeking more money, I don’t affirm “I am rich”. Instead, I simply repeat the word “Wealth” over and over again. If you are seeking to feel better, simply repeat “Health”, or “Energy”. In order to maximize the efficiency and power of these words, do this hand in hand with point #2, which is to…
• See it and feel it – When you repeat your one word affirmations, immediately see the picture in your mind. Form an image of what wealth, health, happiness, or whatever means to you. Maintain that image as you say the words over and over. Also, capture the feeling. What would wealth or the perfect body feel like for you? Keep your focus there as you speak your words.
• The final key in overcoming the negatives is to deluge your mind with affirmations. It took a long time for positive affirmations to work for me. I followed the first two steps correctly. I simply didn’t do it enough. It’s a simple fact that the more you use positive affirmations, the quicker you will see positive results. I don’t exaggerate when I suggest you repeat the affirmations hundreds of times a day. It can be done. Simply take 5 minute blocks at times during the day, when stuck in traffic, showering, during commercials, on the checkout line, or whenever.
Positive affirmations can be a great tool in changing your core beliefs and leading you to your desired life. If you follow the above guidelines, you can avoid the negative thoughts getting in the way and can instead eliminate them completely. I can certainly affirm that this process works. Enjoy the blessings!