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Affirmations get a bad rap by many in the areas of personal growth and development, and at the same time by others are touted as the magic to changing your life. There are those who tell you that using affirmations is THE way to changing your thinking thus changing your life, and others who say they are a useless waste of time.
Here I will attempt to clarify and set straight the place and value of affirmations in your self improvement efforts to change and grow in your life. The topic of affirmations fits into what I call “A fine line.” There is a fine line between going too far one way or the other. To get the value from something you must find the “fine line” place in the middle, too far one way or the other, and you loose it. And so it is with affirmations.
First, some of the misconception comes from people grasping for the quick fix. We all know how we can easily read into something what we want. And that what most people are looking for is the quickest, easiest way to make changes in their life, which does really not exist.
All related factors must be addressed to realize real results. Affirmations do play a role in your overall self development and growth but are certainly not the only tool that must be used to get the results you want. Affirmations alone will not bring about the major change in life some believe, on the other hand they are not totally worthless as many others make them out to be.
Much of what is taught in the personal growth and development field is just part of the story. Where someone has focused on one or even a few aspects of what is involved and highlighting just those parts, which gives the impression that, that is all there is. Yes, in short change it is simple, but there are many ‘between the lines’ aspects that come into play, and one of these is affirmations.
It’s easy to allow ourselves to get consumed with one aspect of life development when our focus is on just one element, which is the case with many books and trainings. It is good to study and focus on one aspect if this is something specifically you feel you need to learn and user, but don’t forget about the whole picture.
Now those who say that just using affirmations will fix your life, seem to ‘forget’ about the aspects of action, among other things, which we can’t escape as we are in this physical reality. Yes, your thoughts and your feelings play a crucial role in how you manage and develop your life, but that’s not all. You must take appropriate actions, it’s your job, your design here in this physical reality we enjoy. If we weren’t suppose to be involved physically why are we here?
And, those who say affirmations are worthless are missing out on a powerful tool that has some purpose when one is working on their thinking. And, yes, your thinking is absolutely critical as everything revolves around it. I think why some people look down on the use of affirmations comes from their reaction to others who say that affirmations are all you need. But this all or nothing reaction does not serve anyone well.
Here are some ways that affirmations are useful in your self improvement work:
* Affirmations help set your tone. Your overall attitude and feeling will affect what you think about. It affects how you act and interact with others. It virtually colors your day. Using affirmations will help direct your daily tone.
* Affirmations help keep your thinking positive – on what you want and away from what you don’t want. If affirmations serve no other purpose for you than this, it makes them well worth using, if all you do is use affirmations to replace unwanted thinking with desirable thinking you have won big. A critical part of change is to learn to stop focusing on what you don’t want and rather focus on what you do want.
* Affirmations help build mental discipline. As you learn affirmations and actually use them regularly, you are training your mind to a different way of thinking on a daily basis. You are learning how you can change your thought and how to keep it as you want. You are learning to take command of your thinking by directing it rather than allowing everything to be automatic.
* Affirmations help evolve your thinking in the direction you want. As you develop affirmations for yourself, you are thinking about and expanding your thinking in the areas that you want to play a greater role in your life. The more you work with developing affirmative and supportive statements, the more you will discover what is possible.
Now, maybe if your thinking is already 100% supportive of what you want in life, where you are going, and you never slip into any thought of doubt, worry and what you don’t like, you don’t need affirmations. Actually if this is the case, you have already assimilated the affirmation like thought into your everyday thinking. Your conscious mind is already always on the positive, supportive congruent thoughts of your ideal life as it is freely unfolding. For anyone else, affirmations can be a useful tool.
Affirmations are a wonderful tool for effecting your thinking, which is very important in your growth and development, as long as you don’t get stuck thinking that this is all you need to do. It takes more than just your thoughts to see results, but developing your thinking is key to your knowing the right actions to take, when and how to get the results you want.
Affirmation is a statement of an idea you desire to “make firm”, to impress upon your subconscious mind, so that eventually it begins to work for you automatically.
There are many different ways to practice self-hypnosis, and writing affirmations is one of them. As you keep on working with self-hypnosis, you may find that at different times your mood and preferences may change and different methods may be more suitable for you. The more options you are aware of, the better you will be able to deal successfully with any situation regardless of the circumstances.
There may be times when you just want to relax and listen to a hypnosis recording and let it guide you toward your desired outcome. There may be times when you feel too busy and may find it more suitable to just let the subliminal recording play in the background. And then, there may be times when you feel too restless, or you are experiencing some pressing feelings you’d like to get out of your system and transform them, times when you just don’t feel like relaxing, but would rather engage in some form of physical action. Writing affirmations is one of the things you can do at such times. By the way, you can write them or type them, repeat them silently or aloud, or even sing them, according to your preference.
Another purpose of writing affirmations is that they allow you to become aware of any conflicting beliefs hiding in your subconscious mind, so that you can transform them at the same time.
An effective process of working with affirmations has three main stages- just like a good hypnosis session, a prayer, or any other form of change-work. The following process describes an effective way you can work with affirmations.
The first stage gets you into the appropriate state of mind for impressing the affirmation upon your subconscious. In a regular hypnosis session, you get into this state of mind generally through relaxing your mind and body. When working with affirmations, you may want to align yourself with the source of all power, or if you prefer, your own inner power to create changes in your life, by writing appropriate affirmations.
The purpose of this stage in hypnosis is to help you to put aside the critical faculty of your conscious mind. The purpose of this stage when writing affirmations is to help you put your “outer” self aside, so that you can access your inner “creative power”, your “true Self” which knows of no limitations and has all the knowledge and power to bring about the desired changes in your life.
Here are few samples of such affirmations:
“I live and move and have my being in an ocean of love, power and wisdom of God”.
“I am in, one with, and completely amalgamated with all love, power and wisdom of God”.
“I allow all the love, power and wisdom of God to express fully and freely through me now.”
Depending on the goal you are working with, you may replace the word(s) “love, power and wisdom”, with “God”, “Spirit”, “abundance”, “peace”, “energy”, “healing energy”, “light”, “life”, “chi”, “ki” or any other attribute or the “universal essence”.
How long should you keep on writing these affirmations in one sitting? Until you get the corresponding FEELING. You impress your subconscious mind through FEELINGS, so you need to keep on writing until you can FEEL that the affirmation you are writing is true for you.
If listening to a particular music helps you to create the desired feeling, by all means have that music playing in the background. You may also listen to corresponding subliminal or supraliminal recordings while writing your affirmations.
The second stage of writing affirmations consists of your “goal-specific” affirmations. Your goal should be stated in positive terms (what you want to experience instead of what you don’t want), and be in a present tense – “as if” the desired outcome is your reality now.
Your affirmations should begin with “I am” or “I am becoming”, “I have”, etc.
Your affirmations should also be specific. For example, if you affirmed “I now have more money” – you may find one cent somewhere and the affirmation would be fulfilled, but that’s probably not what you had in mind. Your subconscious mind takes your statements literally and it fulfills them according to what you affirm. A better affirmation would be “I now have $ (specific amount)”, or “I am now earning $ (specific amount) a month”.
You may write these affirmations in the first (“I am”), second (“You are”) and third person (“[your name] is”).
Your affirmations will be even more effective if you incorporate “feeling” words into your affirmations. For example
“I feel so good that I am now able to …”
“I feel so exited now that I have …”
“I have decided to …”
“I am committed to …”
Certain types of general affirmations do work well, too.
“All my needs are now and forever supplied”, or
“I am enjoying perfect health now and forever”.
These general types of affirmations are pretty close to the affirmations you were writing in the first stage of the affirmation process because what you’re doing here is affirming and aligning yourself with spiritual truths. You are simply affirming that you desire to experience in your physical world what is already true for you in spirit. You are acknowledging these spiritual truths and allowing them to express in your life.
The universe (or, your subconscious / Superconscious mind – whatever term you prefer) follows the path of least resistance. This means that what you ask for will come in a way that is the easiest to get according to your beliefs, desires and expectations and according to beliefs, desires and expectations of everyone else who may be involved in your project.
If you leave the “how”, what you desire will come about often much faster than if you insist that it has to come in any specific way. You can simply state:
“[your desired goal] now manifests for me in a perfect way for the highest good of all”.
There may be many more ways of getting what we desire than the ways we are consciously aware of, so leaving this element to the universal creative intelligence (or to your “inner wisdom”) would often help you to get something that is even better than what you have originally envisioned.
It is also good to distinguish between the “form” and the “essence”. The “essence” relates to the feeling you’re after, the feeling you believe the specific thing would give you. The “form” is the thing you believe will best fulfill this need and enable you to experience the desired feeling. Often times we may get exactly the thing we asked for only to find out that it didn’t really give us the feeling we desired to experience. Also, focusing on the “essence” or the “feeling” will help to manifest the truly desired experience in your life much faster and to your greater satisfaction.
To find out what is the “essence” of what you desire, you may simply ask yourself a question “What will having this thing enable me to experience?” For example if you are in debt, you ultimate desire to have all of your needs met and all debts paid off. Even if it is a financial debt, you may or may not need money to pay it off. There are many different ways in which your debt may be cleared – it may happen that you encounter new opportunities to create that money and pay the debt, it may happen that money from an unexpected source lands in your lap, it may happen that the debt simply becomes erased as if it never existed, or some other serendipitous circumstances occur. For this reason, it is always in your best interest to remain open and expect even miraculous solutions, while at the same time you commit yourself to do your very best to help yourself.
The affirmations you write will work in conjunction with the beliefs which are already impressed upon your subconscious mind. So, if you are writing affirmations for prosperity, what may initially happen is that you end up with more offers for the same type of work you’re accustomed to getting.
This simply means that, through repeated action, this method of acquiring money has become conditioned in your subconscious mind. And, of course, you can change it by reaffirming the method in which you’d rather be acquiring money now, until this new idea becomes impressed upon your subconscious mind.
Or, if you have a health challenge, and begin to affirm for perfect health, the first method you may come across may again be the one that is most acceptable to you according to beliefs and conditioning already impressed in your subconscious mind.
Whatever first comes your way as a response to your affirmation doesn’t mean that it’s the only way – it just means that it’s most appropriate based on your current beliefs. By sticking with the idea you really had in mind, sooner or later you’ll get your desired outcome.
You may also get the actual thing you are after or you may end up with a lot of opportunities requiring some kind of action on your part and leading to the acquisition of the desired thing. It is important to recognize when what you asked for is manifesting in some way in your life, even if it’s not exactly what you asked for. This will still boost your confidence and condition your subconscious mind for success because you’ll know that something is working even if you need to adjust your request in some way.
While I did say that you should be “specific” there are some things that you should avoid regardless of how initially attractive such ideas may seem to be. Things to avoid are asking for a job that a specific person has, a possession belonging to a specific person, or that a specific person (e.g. Joe or Mary) goes out with you on a date, or worse, drops dead. Can you get those things with affirmations? Yes, you can – but ultimately you may not like the consequences. These things would be “ill-gotten” and sooner or later, something would be taken away from you “in exchange”, something that you consider valuable.
You can, on the other hand, affirm for yourself that you are irresistibly attractive and that you ideal partner is now coming into your life. You can also list down the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual qualities of such a person as well as any other general interests. You can specify what kind of relationship you’d like to attract and enjoy. You can specify that you’d like to work in a specific occupation, make certain amount of money, etc. And you can affirm peace, love, happiness and abundance for other people. In short, if you wouldn’t want other people affirming something for you, don’t affirm such things for others.
When you affirm for something, it is pretty much like throwing a pebble (your statement) into an ocean (of infinite supply). It will create waves in all directions, gather all different expressions of the energy (thoughts and feelings) you just sent out, it will multiply and come back to you. So, unless you’d really like to experience what you asked for multiplied and returned to you, don’t affirm it.
If you desire something, but don’t have a clue how to create such experience in your life, or it appears that all doors are closed to you, you can affirm:
“The way now opens for me to … (state your desire)”
The way to uncover any conflicting beliefs you may have regarding what you desire to create in your life is to write your affirmation once, then take a deep breath, and write down whatever first comes to your mind as a response to such statement. Then write your affirmation again, take another deep breath and write down whatever comes to your mind as a response. For example:
(affirmation) “I, (your name), completely forgive myself”
(response) “I smashed my dad’s car. I was so irresponsible.”
(affirmation) “I, (your name), completely forgive myself”
(response) “I never once called my mother in two years. What kind of a person am I?”.
(affirmation) “I, (your name), completely forgive myself”
(response) “I yelled at my son. Oh boy, I’m so stressed out” … etc.
Incidentally, if you choose to work with forgiveness affirmations, it is recommended that you write them 70 times a day for seven days. You are bound to experience some major transformation and emotional clearing in just one week. You may be very surprised with the results.
And talking of “clearing”, if you find yourself standing in front of apparently insurmountable obstacles, you may write the following affirmations:
“The path to my (being, having, doing) …is now clear.”
“All obstacles to my (being, having, doing) … vanish into nothingness”.
“I now give all of my problems to the Spirit (Christ, Inner Wisdom, God) within me.”
“All obstacles to my (being, having, doing) … now dissolve in the Light.”
“I totally surrender to my Inner Wisdom”.
“Beloved God, Thy Will be done in me and through me now and forever.”
The third stage of the affirmation process consists of closing the process. In hypnosis, this is usually done through suggestions for emerging from the state of hypnosis to normal waking consciousness.
While writing affirmations, you can write down “gratitude” affirmations acknowledging the acceptance of the blessings (change) you have just asked for.
Some examples of these affirmations are:
“I am deeply grateful for my life”.
“I am deeply grateful that I now enjoy perfect health.”
“I am deeply grateful that the million dollars are now manifesting in my hands.”
“I am deeply grateful for the ability to serve others.”
“I am deeply grateful for my ability to …”
And, of course, you may close the whole process with “It is so!”, or “So be it!”, or “Amen!” knowing that what you asked for will most definitely manifest in your life according to your beliefs and expectations.
Dr. Laura De Giorgio is a Clinical Hypnotherapist and NLP Master Practitioner. She has created hundreds of hypnosis, subliminal, supraliminal and supraliminal plus recordings in several languages. She also publishes a free inspiring, informative and motivational hypnosis newsletter designed to help you learn how to use your mind power successfully and offers many free hypnosis downloads at http://www.deeptrancenow.com.
You may have heard that “affirmations do not work” or perhaps you find yourself wondering whether affirmations really work or how do affirmations work.
The answer of course is “it depends”. It depends on the affirmation and it depends the person’s level of belief… or more accurately your level of disbelief.
If the affirmation you say or write doesn’t feel true or believable to you, more likely than not it will not manifest for you. You have to “feel” good about your affirmations. So use how you feel when writing your affirmation in order to best achieve results.
If you write down an affirmation that really is not what you believe, you’re going to have a natural resistance in your vibration or subconscious thought and so you will be thwarting yourself. So reword your affirmations in a positive way that is believable to you and then say it out loud EVERY DAY, several times a day (because affirmations said only once are not powerful enough to change your sub-conscious patterns of thinking).
For example, instead of saying “I am”, if that feels off, substitute the words “I am in the process of” into your affirmation.
Affirmations help you mold yourself into what you want to become. Keep your affirmations open on the “how”. When you state something freely and openly then there is no resistance as to how it can come to you. When we say “mold”, we mean you are in effect changing yourself, so you need to establish this new you slowly and gently over time.
Also, be careful in your wording of your affirmation because if you aren’t, you may go through some chaos as you achieve it. For example,if you want a new job because your current one is stressful, you may get the new job by being fired from your current one or even find yourself an even more stressful job.
In order to avoid chaos or the drama, work into your affirmation that you are achieving what you want in an easy, gentle way. So word your affirmation indicating you are finding a job that you will enjoy in a way that provide you positive change.
“I am in the process of finding a job that is fun and fulfilling and I am making the transition to that job in a relaxed, stress free manner.”
Repeat this once a day every day if you have no resistance to saying it.
Remember also that if your job doesn’t show up right away, that doesn’t mean it isn’t coming. Things have to line up first, which means you really have to truly know what it is you want… otherwise you will not likely be in alignment with it.
So while you are waiting for the “perfect job”, affirm to yourself that your current job is stress free and enjoyable. Now you are covered. You get less stress in your current job, while your perfect job is on the way.
Now you are out of the way in terms of how it happens. You may find that in the end you didn’t need a new job, but just had to adjust to the changes in your current one. And once you learned to respond better to your circumstances things improved for you in all areas of your life.
We also hear about people using over 300 affirmations a day, and getting no results. The solution is to focus. Focus on something that is really important for you. In this case, less is more.
Finding relief from your current situation also may be the next step for you to achieving success. So start with an affirmation that you are discovering more joy or love in your life. Start with simple things.
If you find yourself in a stressful situation, you can repeat specific affirmations to help calm you down. Let’s say you are stressed, then affirm you have “peace and calmness” soaking deep into your being right now. Take a few minutes to see yourself soaking in that wonderful energy. Those quick positive affirmations are handy, so be ready to use them.
It can be very simple to work with positive affirmations if you take a simple easy does it approach with no resistance in the words. A lot can be done right now to make your next 12 months a positive experience just by starting today to write out your key affirmations for the next 12 months.
If you’d like more information about how to use positive affirmations, visit Intrinsic Coach? Warren Wojnowski’s website and be sure to sign up for his free 7 day eCourse by clicking here now: Create Abundance, or send an email now to email@example.com