Positive affirmations can be defined as positive, empowering declarations - said in the present tense - that we say to ourselves, often repeatedly. They are simple, straightforward phrases used to manifest positive outcomes in our lives. Words are powerful, and when combined with good intention and positivity, they have the ability to work wonders on our mindset.
They are effective
Scientific research supports that the practice of using positive affirmations is effective at shifting your mindset, improving self-esteem and affecting positive outcomes. High-performing athletes, successful entrepreneurs, and those who’ve overcome a major obstacle, addiction, or trauma often mention their mindset and often use positive affirmations as a critical tool. They also can be used to improve self-esteem and build confidence.
Positive affirmations are also a form of self-care and a proven way to improve mental health. Think of affirmations as exercising your mind. Just as physical exercises are repeated for our health, consistent repetition of affirmations has been shown to reduce stress, and in turn, improve our overall well-being.
When positive affirmations are helpful
Performing or speaking in front of an audience produces anxiety in many people. Practicing positive affirmations can calm your nerves and boost your confidence to relieve stress, improving your ability to perform. Here are a few other events with which positive affirmations can help:
- Sports games
- Test taking
- Meetings and presentations
Positive affirmations are also helpful in more routine situations, such as:
- Creating new habits
- Improving self-esteem
- Controlling negative thoughts
- Increasing patience
Examples of positive affirmations
If you want to come up with your own unique affirmative statements, some guidelines may help. Try to keep them short and sweet, work your goals into them, and focus on truth. It’s also important to avoid statements that you don’t believe at all; that can end up having a reverse impact. Instead, think about the good things in yourself and your life and for which you are grateful, or remind yourself of your strengths. Here are a few examples of positive affirmations:
- I am happy
- I love my life
- I love me for who I am
- I'm in control of my thoughts and actions
- I am crushing it
- I am perfectly me
- I have a purpose
- I am confident
- I am a great friend
- I am relaxed
Sometimes other techniques are paired with the practice of using positive affirmations, including the following:
- Visualization - Using your imagination to visualize a desired attribute, change, or outcome.
- Journaling - Putting your thoughts down on paper, usually routinely. It can also involve art.
- Goal-setting - Setting intentions and working toward achieving goals.
- Meditation - Mindfully reflecting and focusing on the words.
When we first started this company and we were working on our tagline, we wanted it to include these ideas: the words we say to ourselves matter, the words other people say to us impact us, and the words we think about ourselves make a big difference. We pared that down to ‘words make all the difference®.’Whether you choose to start your day with positive affirmations or give yourself these reminders as you drift off to sleep, include your favorite notes to self® socks as the perfect addition to your wellness journey.