In the realm of personal development, one tool stands out for its transformative potential — affirmations. But do they work? Can they change your mindset? And do they impact how you experience life and tackle daily challenges? In this post we take a moment to explore the impact of positive affirmations.

Affirmations are statements that we tell ourselves that have the power to shift our mindset and make us feel better about ourselves. 

These statements are more than words; they are the keys to unlocking your inner potential. By beginning your day with a simple yet powerful mantra that resonates with your aspirations and goals you can stride into the world with a positive outlook, more motivation and less anxiety.

Building Confidence

Neuroplasticity, or your brain’s ability to change and adapt to different circumstances throughout your life, offers a clue to help understand not only what makes affirmations work, but how to make them more effective. Telling yourself things like “I believe in my ability to succeed” or “I’ve got what it takes” shifts your focus from negative thoughts and self-sabotaging to positively impact the way you approach your day or work.

"It’s a kind of Marie Kondo exercise for our whole life—stripping away what is not needed and moving to our more essential nature," says media mogul and renowned wellness advocate, Arianna Huffington.

Affirmations for Resilience

Listen for negative comments in your head and replace them with something positive like “I’ve got this”, “I’m good at my job” or "I face adversity with courage and resilience". Positive thinking does not mean ignoring the problem in order to focus on positive outcomes. It means understanding that setbacks are temporary and that you have the skills and abilities to combat the challenges you face.

Instilling Confidence

Motivational positive affirmations can also help bolster confidence, activating certain areas of the brain associated with reward in order to remind people of their self-worth, according to a study published in Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. It’s important to make sure these statements are grounded in reality and your values, however, and are not overly optimistic, to avoid toxic positivity and feeding yourself thoughts that aren’t necessarily true or useful.

"Before you take on the day’s demands, identify a negative feeling and reframe it in your favor. For example, if you frequently feel judged—by yourself or others—for falling behind or not measuring up somehow, try 'I'm able to do everything that needs to be done'. And if, for instance, you often feel overwhelmed or stressed, try 'I am enough'," Huffington suggests.

Affirmations are not mere words; they are declarations that can help to shape your reality to boldly face your day and help you achieve your goals and dreams.

Sources & links to more reading:

Psychology Today : A Guide to Affirmations

Healthline : Do Affirmations Work?

Verywell Mind: 10 Ways to Build Resilience

Forbes : Positive Affirmations and how to use them

Forbes : Adriana Huffington on how to start the year with purpose
November 22, 2023 — Gallantly Team

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