Affirmations are simply statements that are designed to create self-change in the life of the individual who uses them. They can act as inspiration, as well as everyday reminders. They also serve to focus attention on goals throughout our day.
Our brain is constantly adapting and rewiring itself. Our thoughts, habits, and behaviors influence this process. If they are repeated consistently and often enough, a strong connection called a neural pathway is created.
We can think of our brain as an extraordinarily bustling city with lots of roads and pathways that are connected and light up every time we think, feel, or do something. Some of these roads are well-traveled. These are our habits, our established ways of thinking, doing, and feeling. Every time we make a choice, practice a particular task, or feel a specific emotion, we strengthen this road, and it becomes easier for our brain to travel this pathway.
Here are some ways you can start changing your brain and creating healthier self-talk habits:
Practice affirming yourself every day. ACTION IS KEY.
• Start with 3 to 5 minutes at least twice a day.
Try saying affirmations upon waking up and getting into bed, for example.
• Repeat each affirmation about 10 times.
Listen to yourself saying it, focusing on the words as they leave your mouth. As you say them, believe them to be true.
• Ask a trusted loved one to help.
Listening to someone else repeat your affirmations may help reinforce your belief in them.
• Make your routine consistent.
Try not to skip any days. If you meditate, affirmations can be a great addition to your daily practice.
• Be patient.
It may take some time before you notice any changes, so stick with your practice.
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MINDFUL FOCUS HOURGLASS
Make time for what’s important. Minimize distractions, mute your devices, and spend 30 minutes focused on that important task, or engaging in meaningful interruption-free conversation. These mindful 30 minutes may just change your life.
Some examples of affirmations to get you started:
1. I can cope with anything life throws at me. I am strong and resilient.
2. Learning new habits is possible and will change my life for the better.
3. I can cope with hardships and challenges in healthy ways that support my greater good.
4. Happiness is a choice. I base my happiness on my accomplishments and the blessings I’ve been given.
When we feel good about ourselves and have a positive attitude, our lives tend to run more smoothly. Thinking positively can raise our vibrations.
I believe in affirmations so much that I am writing a book (to be published next spring) on their power and how they changed my life, as well as most of my clients’ lives.
When we start taking care of our body and mind through positive thinking, things such as renewed health, love, financial abundance, and recovery of all kinds will come our way. We simply have to trust the process.
Erica Spiegelman is a wellness specialist, recovery counselor, and author of the new book The Rewired Life (2018) as well as Rewired: A Bold New Approach to Addiction & Recovery(2015), the Rewired Workbook (2017), the Rewired Coloring Book (2017), all published by Hatherleigh Press. Erica holds a bachelor’s degree in literature from the University of Arizona and is a California State Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor (CADAC)-II from UCLA. For more information, visit Erica’s website or follow @Erica Spiegelman on Instagram.
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