When you repeat something over and over in your head, you begin to believe it. It doesn't really matter what it is that you are saying, say it enough and you will begin to believe it.
From personal experience, and believe me there's a lot of it, I understand how detrimental negative self talk can be. We have all been there, 'I'm so fat, I'm so ugly, I hate my hair' and so on. Just saying those words to yourself feels so depleting, and drains your energy. I know when I start the negative self talk I really feel a sense of deflation, my body and mind takes on a heaviness and there's this hounding sense of sadness. It can really take over, but the most scary part is that it becomes second nature, it becomes very natural, you begin to identify with the words, and you find yourself sensing normality with the negative talk. You almost don't hear the negative talk anymore, its drowned out in what has become normal. Its only when you begin to pay attention to this, you really see what you have been saying for so long.
So if negative words can deflate you so rapidly and with such force, imagine what positive words can do, hello affirmations!
Affirmations are a new age belief that have been around since the 1970's. They are positive empowering statements that are repeated verbally or written over & over. In as little as a few minutes you can teach your brain a new way to think.
Important factors to a good affirmation is to repeat them in the present, 'There is ....' 'I am ..., I ...., ' there is a certain sense of power when you speak in this way. The words 'I am' originating from the Hebrew text, 'I am what I am' I will become what I choose to become. They need to be specific, short and concise. Elaborate long sentences will just get lost in translation. I also believe there needs to be relatability to the affirmation, you have to have conviction in what you are saying, your energy will then become a match for the vibration of words. Over time you can adapt and replace words as you become more powerful and comfortable in what you are saying.
Watching yourself in the mirror as you repeat the affirmations, really looking into your eyes, the windows to our souls, dramatically intensifies this practice. It can be a hugely uncomfortable experience to begin with, but incredibly powerful. You really get a clear insight into how much negative self talk has been going on, full transparency comes through, and your feelings surface. Stick with the uncomfortableness of this, work through it, you may find you even cry, this allows space for the thought pattern to be restructured.
To start out using daily affirmations I would create three affirmations to use. For instance, if you have body confidence issues, you could choose something like,
'I am grateful for my body'
'I respect and love my body'
'I treat my whole self with care and love'
Begin by journaling statements that resonate. Start to repeat them morning and night for a minute or two. Set a reminder on your phone during the day, stop and pause, repeat the affirmations again. Let them become your new second nature. As you become more familiar with the practice incorporate more statements, add more dimensions, really get creative and add your own power
I believe there are multiple things we should be doing to put ourselves on the path of greatness, its not a one stop shop, and its an ever ongoing journey. However, I do believe the practice of affirmations can play a significant role, and something we should be doing daily. In just a few minutes a day you really can and will see results.