Positive affirmations work! Why? Because we are always talking to ourselves, go on admit it. I bet you talk youself through what you are buying at the store, or you tell yourself what job or task you need to do next. Talking to yourself is a normal part of every day life and I don't just mean, talking to yourself out loud. When your brain is thinking, that is a form of self talk and guess what....you are always listening.
We very rarely hit the pause button on our self talk. If you have ever tried to have a quick nap or actively clear your mind during practices, such as meditation I can gurantee thoughts have still popped up. Well with positive affirmations you are activiely filling your mind with goodness.
Think of your unconscious mind as a tape recorder. It simply records everything you think or say and then plays it back to you. This is an automatic thing and because it is unconscious most people are hardly ever aware of it. Most people only enter into therapy when they feel completely out of sync with themself, start noticing behaviours or 'symptoms', which are undesirable or someone close to them recommends that they go.
In terms of the unconscious mind, the negative feedback on your self talk 'tapes' have become so vast and numerous that it actually causes you to behave in ways you don't understand. For some positive affirmations (daily) is all that is needed to get that boost. For others deeper work will need to be undertaken alongside this. It is all about where you are at in relation with onesself. So if there is not a significant enough enrichment to your wellbeing after completing this workshop (and continuing your affirmations for a month), then therapy is something I would recommend.
Exercise 1: Find a tape recorder or use the record feature on your phone. Leave it to record in a room in your home for an hour. Let family members know that you need to do this for a self help project regarding the way in which you speak. If they object then you can do this exercise alone. Simply leave it to record in a private room, you will have to say what you are thinking out loud. This can be whilst you are watching t.v., working out, folding clothes-whatever.
Ideally do this for a week as you may not do it every day but by the end of it hopefully you will have five hours of self talk, that you can actively access. Be sure not to listen to them until the week is up! This is to avoid any filtering out, of the things that you do and do not want to hear.
Once the week is up make a quick tally sheet and mark for each positive and negative comment or statement you hear. These do not have to be self directed, all comments made even statements made towards a friend or radio personality should be included. Once you have done this add them up. What do you think of the results?
This exercise is simply to help you become aware of the way in which you communicate with others but more importantly yourself. Self-awareness is always the first step to personal development.
Exercise 2: Every morning (and every night) take a moment to speak goodness to yourself. As I said before positive affirmations are simply, wholesome self talk. So fill yourself with love by reminding yourself daily that:
I am loveable
I am loved
I am courageous
I am intelligent
I have everything I need inside of me to succeed
I am resourceful
I am resilient
The universe conspires to give me everything that I need
I am beautiful
I am loving
I am kind
I love you (insert your own name here)
These are just some examples, you can make up your own and/or print these out and stick them near your mirror or somewhere memorable. Try to do these when you know you will not be disturbed and you can do them even more regularly if you like.
So remember you can be your own worst critique or your own number one fan. The choice is yours.