Affirmations take hard work, not just positive thinking

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My intention with each of these posts is that you’re challenged to interrupt the noise and routine in your life, just for a moment, to think more deeply about what really matters in life… your relationship with yourself and with others in your professional and personal life.

Action Summary

  1. Write out affirmation statements to build more self-trust in your life
  2. Ask yourself what actions you’re implementing to live up to your affirmation statements
  3. Set goals and take intentional action to live up to your affirmation statements

The WHY:

An affirmation is a statement in the present tense that is declared by you to be an actual or desired truth about you. The theory is, the more you say something or affirm something to yourself, over time your subconscious will simply accept it as being a truth and will allow you to consciously discover ways to fulfil that truth through action.

But be careful here.

What increases the likelihood and speed of an affirmation becoming a reality in your life, is an alignment with your personal beliefs and values.

If you have an affirmation that is inconsistent with your inner values and belief about who you want to be or what you want to do, there will be a dissonance or conflict within you. This means the likelihood of the affirmation ‘sticking’ over time will be reduced and you will find it difficult to consciously discover ways to fulfil the affirmation.

In other words, if you don’t believe in your own affirmation, it’s going to be pretty tough finding the energy and motivation to discover what actions you need to implement to live up to that affirmation.

In his leading research into positive psychology and what it takes to live a flourishing life, Martin Seligman 1 highlights one of the essential ingredients is to experience more positive emotions about life.

An affirmation is more than just positive thinking. It’s a statement about your own sense of self-trust. It’s a statement about your confidence in who you are and what you want to represent to the world in your professional and personal life. And it’s a statement that you can demonstrate through your actions and behaviour that you’re intentionally working on living up to in your daily professional and/or personal life.

Mostly then, an affirmation is about action … otherwise, it’s simply an idea without true belief.

Let me leave you with this quote from Muhammad Ali who said …

“It is the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief.
And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.”
– Muhammad Ali

My best to you for now, and remember when you intentionally improve the life of others in your professional and personal relationships, you set up the power of reciprocity … what you give out, you get back.

  1. Martin Seligman: Flourish: A new understanding of happiness and well-being – and how to achieve them.
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