Can you use affirmations to build your confidence? What exactly are affirmations?
When I first learned about affirmations, I didn’t believe they worked because it sounded like magic and wishful thinking.
What are Affirmations?
“Put simply, they are positive phrases or statements used to challenge negative or unhelpful thoughts.” – Catherine Moore, PositivePsychology
“Affirmations are positive statements that can help you to challenge and overcome self-sabotaging and negative thoughts. When you repeat them often, and believe in them, you can start to make positive changes.” – MindTools
Last year, I decided to give affirmations a chance because I’d read the science behind how affirmations can help you train your brain.
When I started taking affirmations seriously, I found that they worked for me. Affirmations have helped me to focus on what I want and why.
Affirmations are reminders of what you envision for yourself. These constant reminders force your mind to find ways to achieve your goal.
It’s a way of controlling your destiny.
The Unexplainable Part About Affirmations
I don’t have an explanation for why some of my affirmations have worked even in situations I had no control over.
When my younger brother started job hunting, one of my affirmations was that he would have a job by November that year.
In exactly November, he had multiple job offers lined up.
I helped him prepare for his interviews and gave him suggestions on how to improve his CV. But ultimately I had no control over whether or not he got a job.
Some of my affirmations have come true down to the last word while some have come true partially. I use affirmations for different reasons.
Three Ways To Use Affirmations
Create Your Compelling Vision
I use affirmations to build strong and compelling visions of my goals.
This helps me to keep pushing myself when things get difficult.
For example, one of my affirmations is about becoming a published author. When I don’t feel like writing, I read my writing affirmation and that gets me in gear.
Uncover Your True Goals
In the age of social media, it’s so easy to think we want certain things because we see that other people have them.
Writing your own affirmations forces you to really think about whether your goals are important to you.
There are times when I’ve written down affirmations and thought ‘I don’t actually want this.’ and so I scrapped it. Precious time saved!
Build Your Confidence
I have an affirmation for public speaking and I read it to myself when I’m feeling nervous before a presentation.
Repeating your affirmations on a regular basis can help you to build your confidence.
Let’s dive into how you can do that.
Using Affirmations To Build Your Confidence
Clear Your Clutter
In order to use affirmations to build your confidence, first look at whether there is any clearing that needs to be done.
For example, if you’re struggling with low self-esteem and a general lack of belief in yourself then that needs to be cleared first.
If you don’t believe that you have the tools to make things happen for you, it makes achieving your goals harder.
Write Your Vision and Affirmations
Make a list of your goals and narrow down the ones that are most important to you right now.
For each goal, write down a vision of you already achieving the goal and how it makes you feel.
I like to start with gratitude for what I already have in me that will help me achieve my goal. I also end with gratitude for achieving my goal.
Here’s a handy formula:
Gratitude Statement + Your Goal + How It Makes You Feel + Gratitude Statement
Here’s an example of one of my affirmations for public speaking.
I am thankful for my ability to speak in public with confidence. I deliver my message with ease and poise. I enjoy speaking in public and sharing my knowledge with the world. I am grateful to be able to help others learn.
Observe Your Feelings
As you’re writing your affirmations, notice how you feel. Do you believe what you’ve written? If you don’t, then reflect on why.
For example, if you’ve written a date but it seems too close then move it.
If you’ve written that you’d like to get a promotion but you feel you don’t deserve it, reflect on why you think this.
It could be a sign that you need to work on your confidence and belief in your worth.
Edit and Use Your Affirmations
Edit your affirmations until you feel that you believe what you’ve written.
I like to have a short version of my affirmations (2-3 lines) and a longer version (5+ lines).
I use the shorter affirmations on a weekly basis and the longer ones on a monthly basis.
You can also use your affirmations as and when you need them.
For example, your affirmation could be about being more confident in meetings. When you have a meeting coming up, recite your affirmation beforehand to give you a boost.
Affirmations can be a key part of building your vision and the confidence to make your dreams happen.
Have you used affirmations? Are affirmations a part of your daily practice?
Tell me what you think of affirmations and how you use affirmations in the comments.