by Julianne Kulosa
Affirmations became popular in the late 1980’s with Louise Hay’s book, “You Can Heal Your Life”. Over time, they, and the New Age Movement, have gotten a pretty bad rap.
Affirmations are often considered wishful thinking at best, or at worst, a lazy person’s way to try to create what they want while sitting on the couch and taking no action out in the world.
What are Affirmations?
They are repeated thoughts, statements and proclamations. Often defined as “positive”, the truth is, any repeated thought, word, or mantra is an affirmation.
There’s a reason things might not seem to go the way you want them too, despite your best efforts. It’s called your subconscious programming, aka The Matrix. Operating out of your conscious awareness, this programming was created when you were a child. You learned, by watching others, how to think, feel, behave and understand your world.
The brain waves of children are in a lower frequency of consciousness, meaning the electrical activity patterns recorded in the EEG. From about age two to six, children are predominantly in a Theta brain wave state, which can be likened to hypnosis. This means children, with wide open imaginations, are in a superior learning state and highly open to suggestion.
As adults, we spend a vast majority of our days (some say up to 98%) operating from subconscious patterns.
These deeply engrained habits and beliefs about ourselves and the world can easily trump a positive thought here and there.
HOWEVER, there are ways we can shift these automatic ways of being, one being through creating new conscious habits.
How do you know your subconscious is running the show? Take a look at any area of your life where you feel stuck or powerless, where despite your best efforts, you keep seeming to do the same thing, experiencing the same things, over and over.
The Power of Conscious Choice
Affirmations are like any new habit or learning experience. With repetition, the brain is re-wired. How long will it take? Well, you might want to create an affirmation around that, such as, “All is unfolding at the perfect time for my highest good,” or “I trust the process of life,” because if you’ve found yourself often feeling you need to hurry up and get somewhere, and there’s something wrong with you if you’re not there yet, there’s a good chance that’s some of your subconscious programming. Good to notice!
Have faith and patience with your affirmations. Ideally, set aside specific time every day to repeat those affirmations. There are plenty to go around if you’re looking for inspiration, and any words can be used as a mantra during meditation.
Shirts, plaques around the house and sticky notes are awesome, but how often do you actually see and say the words aloud or silently? Purposefully repeating those affirmations daily will benefit you most.
While you might choose a general affirmation to repeat silently, aloud, to yourself in the mirror or to write in journal such as, “I love you,” “All is Well,” or “I am grateful for…,” consider starting to pay more attention to those areas you are feeling stuck. What are most common statements and viewpoints that keep repeating in that area when you notice your thoughts? You can counter those with their opposite, even if at first you might just state, “It’s possible…”
No, you don’t have to believe it at first. You might start with just being open to the possibility. Just repeat, repeat and repeat again. We learn through practice and repetition. Would it be so horrible to repeat consciously for the rest of your life, “I am abundant,” “I am safe and loved,” or “I trust life and the universe”? The worst that could happen is that you notice all the thoughts and beliefs that insist the opposite is true. That noticing gives you power to choose again. What world do you want to live in?
Any positive affirmation is great. A change in one area shifts the whole, so you don’t have to choose 20 affirmations to do a day or feel overwhelmed. An affirmation is not a lazy way to produce change. It is an assertion or declaration about something, and it will affect your choices, actions and responses in the world. Your choosing to habitually state, imagine and feel in present moment terms (“I am” as compared to “I will”) really can assist you in waking up out of the illusion and limitations of the Matrix.
Affirmations are a powerful tool to use in your spiritual awakening process. They aren’t “shoulds” or “have to’s”, but rather a great option, should you be drawn to use them, as you awaken in your unique and perfect way.
Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash
It's not just you, my beloved. The world is transforming and we're all in this together. You are a master and expert in your unique experiences and contribution to the world. Together we'll navigate through these challenging yet oh so juicy and magical times.