When I started doing energy work over 20 years ago, there was little to no science available to validate the effectiveness of holding a positive mindset or the power of positive affirmations.
In fact, you may remember Senator Al Frankin on the early Saturday Night Live shows as Stewart Smalley. He would sit gazing into a mirror reciting, ‘I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.’
In 1976, Louise Hay wrote her first book, ‘You Can Heal Your Body,’ which was based on her use of visualization, positive thought, and affirmation to heal herself.
But back then it was considered new agey and woo woo, and to be honest, I still encounter people today who don’t believe in the power of positive thought and positive affirmations.
I started using the power of affirmation, and I knew it worked because I saw it work for me, I saw it work for clients and students. That’s called anecdotal evidence. Which is when the proof that something works is based on the experience or anecdotes of others. If one was willing to take a leap and explore positive affirmations, they could and often did experience a change in their life, but if they were more linear in their thinking and needed hard proof, the benefits of this practice were missed.
Today, though, you don’t have to take my word for it or jump in with trust and faith. People are actually studying the impact and effects of positive affirmations when it comes to health & wellness, mindset, emotions, mood, and even success.
Positive Affirmations Activate Your Reward Center
In one study researchers at the Annenberg School of Communications, together with researchers at the University of Michigan and UCLA conducted a study that reveals the neural mechanics of self-affirmation. In other words, what happens in the brain when we use positive affirmations.
People were studied via an MRI, and the research team mapped what areas of the brain are activated when someone repeats a positive affirmation, and what they found was both fascinating and affirming in itself.
Positive affirmations activate the reward centers in the brain. These reward centers are the areas that respond to pleasurably to experiences such as winning or enjoying a favorite meal. (Study)
Positive affirmations help us to be more optimistic and linger less on negative thoughts. (Wiesenfeld & Team, 2001)
They help to reduce stress. (Critcher & Dunning, 2015)
They can lead you to increase physical exercise. (Cooke et al., 2014)
They can improve your GPA (Layous et al., 2017)
They can alleviate worrying (Koole et al., 1999)
You can benefit in many ways by practicing positive affirmations. You can live a better life, feel better emotionally, experience more clarity, overcome obstacles, and experience success.
How do you create positive affirmations?
They are always positive (should go without saying, but our subconscious can be a powerful thing.)
They are most powerful when they start with the word, ‘I.’
They should be based on the present time or in the future. (Recent studies show that future-based affirmations are very effective, but I have always used present-time-based affirmations.)
Including an action, the word can add effectiveness (again, I haven’t followed this and have had great success with affirmations, but studies do show this to be effective.)
Repeated first thing in the morning. (I tend to repeat them often throughout the day as well. They become a mantra of sorts.)
Here are a few examples:
I am strong.
I am calm.
I am successful.
I am loved.
I am o.k.
30 Days of Positive Affirmations Done-For-You
Despite our best intentions, it can be hard to stay on track. Or sometimes it’s just hard to figure out what’s the best affirmation.
If you’d like a done-for-you solution, I’ve created 30 days of Positive Affirmations for you and right now you can them for only $12. That’s 30 days of Positivity in your inbox and if you are in the US or Canada, you’ll also get a text reminder each morning. Click this link to find out more