I frickin’ LOVE my friend Cass (who is the creator/editor of Happiness + Wellbeing mag and is an outstanding copywriter btw). I love her for many reasons, but today I mostly love her because she asks me awesome questions. Questions that spark deep convos, realisations and blog post-worthy answers!
I may very well start a whole blog post category of ‘Cass Asks’ posts, but for now, let’s rock back to the point of this very post.
Affirmations and why they may not be working for you and, even better, how to use them effectively, YAY!
Affirmations have been getting some bad press recently… some psychologists and self-help authors have been saying they don’t work and you shouldn’t use them. And that repeating sentences that aren’t true is like lying.
But I’m standing up for affirmations as powerful tools to shift your life. I simply think these people have misunderstood how teachers, like Louise Hay + Anthony Robbins, have suggested using them.
I totally understand why people are questioning affirmations – it’s good, healthy and wise to question everything in life – especially if you tried it and haven’t had great results.
The problem is, when describing how affirmations haven’t worked for them, it sounds like they put all their power and manifesting juju into this one tool: affirmations.
By saying an affirmation, is your life going to change automatically? Hmmm, sounds dubious, because it is. Saying a repeated sentence isn’t going to manifest your desires.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned on my spiritual path, it’s that you should take what tools work for you, add them to your spiritual toolbox, then mix with other things.
I don’t believe that giving our power to one tool is the whole answer. (That’s a bit like saying, if you start eating Kale, you will lose weight). But I do believe that using supportive spiritual tools, like affirmations (or kale), can create huge shifts that help get you from A to B.
*mini case study!*
I came to learn about affirmations through Louise Hay’s book, You Can Heal Your Life. Affirmations came into my life at a time when I was really stuck in certain areas (particularly romantic relationships) and couldn’t move forward.
I was thoroughly tormented with loneliness and couldn’t seem to meet anyone that clicked. I was also in a country thousands of miles away from my family, which magnified everything.
I was SO upset, that I delved hardcore into my spiritual development tools. I did the exercises in Louise’s book with extreme clarity and focus, creating my own affirmations and through the process, had extreme shifts in thinking.
It’s our thinking/feeling that we want to change at the end of the day.
I used the affirmations I had created as reminders and boosters of the things I had discovered about myself and my thinking. I used them as a support, a reminder, to stop thinking my old, out-dated, unsupportive, mouldy thoughts (which weren’t true anyway) that were creating my experiences and continue thinking my new supportive loving thoughts.
Along with affirmations, I took action. I stopped dating blatantly-wrong men that I didn’t click with and I took 6 months off for ME, for the first time in 10 years. 3 months into that Me-Time, I met Will, my fiancé.
This is why I was so passionate about creating my Affirmation Creator Action Pad. Any tools that have helped to totally shift my life / perspective, I feel a mystical urge to make pretty + offer to the masses as my spiritual mission.
Affirmations are also taught + used in classical yoga, going under the name of a Resolution, or ‘Sankalpa’.
Sankalpa (Sanskrit: संकल्प) means conception or idea or notion formed in the heart or mind, solemn vow or determination to perform, desire, definite intention, volition or will.
A Sankalpa is said mentally during yoga nidra ( the super lovely relaxing bit at the end of a yoga sesh ) as the mind is settled, focused, clear and present. In this state, the subconscious is more receptive to conscious thoughts, so the affirmation has more power over your subconscious mind.
Yes, reading out sentences that aren’t true IS lying. But this is not all an affirmation is, and I want to help educate and pass this knowledge on, so people don’t skip over and miss out on the power, support and focus of an amazing spiritual tool.
I love affirmations and whole-heartedly continue to use them as a support tool to shift my perspective and create new thinking habits. My Affirmation Creator Action Pad is my best friend when I’m doing inner work around shifting a subconscious pattern that is holding me back.
+ Use affirmations as a support tool alongside deep shifting realisation exercises (Check out Louise’s book for these types of things)
+ Don’t put all your manifesting power into one tool. You are the powerful creator, tools are there to guide, remind and support.
+ Question everything. Question self-help writers. Question this blog post. At the end of the day, do what feels right for you.
What do YOU think about affirmations?
Have you had success or failure with them in the past?
Has this shifted the way you think about them?
Or do you still think they add confusion to our already-delicate belief system?
Would love to hear if you agree or not!