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Affirmations can help motivate you, focus on your goals, boost self-confidence and feelings of happiness, open your mind to new beliefs, and even attract love in some cases. But what are affirmations exactly? Affirmations are words or phrases which are said over and over to solidify a single thought about yourself or other people. After these phrases are repeated, they soon become a belief, and then we think this belief is our reality. Of course, you have to practice affirmations regularly if you want them to work. It’s best to make daily affirmations as you’re setting an intention for how you want to feel and what you’d like to accomplish — think of it as a kickstart to your day. 

While it’s best to come up with your own words or phrases based on your current needs and wants, some affirmation examples can be “I am loved,” “Everything is happening exactly as it was meant to be, and “I can do whatever I put my mind to.” Here are TK tips to help you create your own affirmations and stick to them. 

1. Make a List of Your Negative Qualities

Wait a second. You thought affirmations were supposed to be positive, right? So why list negative qualities? Trust, there’s a method to the madness (more on that in a bit), but take a moment to take a deep dive into any criticisms and insecurities that you haven’t been able to shake, including anything that was directed to you from a family, friend, or co-worker. Don’t be afraid to go back to the past — maybe you were teased for your weight as a kid and you still have a complex from it. As you write these things down, pay close attention to where it causes distress in your body. Perhaps your stomach hurts or your shoulders become tense — you’ll need this intel later on. Next, look for common themes such as “I’m not worthy,” “I don’t try hard enough,” or “I’ll never be good enough.” 

2. Turn the Negative into a Positive Affirmation

Here’s where the positivity comes into play. Simply rephrase the negative into a positive statement. So using the aforementioned examples, “I am worthy,” “I try my best at everything I do,” and “I can do whatever I put my mind to.” To make the affirmation more powerful, try using more complicated words — use a Thesaurus if you need to. Then you can come up with phrases like, “I’m significant and laudable.” 

3. Consider Your Current Life Situation 

You can also create affirmations to help you create an example, whether that’s your job, health, relationship — anything goes. For example, maybe you have a big presentation at work coming up and you’re feeling nervous about it. You could say something like, “I have the ability to conduct an informative presentation that will impress my colleagues. Perhaps you want to quit smoking. An affirmation you could use is “I am strong enough to beat this craving.” These types of affirmations can help you feel more in control of your feelings and actions. 

4. Repeat Your Affirmation Regularly

As mentioned, daily affirmations really are the way to go if you want maximum efficiency. Speak (verbally or mentally) your affirmation for five minutes, a minimum of three times a day — set a timer if need be. Some people find it easier to do this when it’s coupled with another activity like taking a shower, gardening, exercising, cooking, etc., however, doing it in front of the mirror has a visual benefit as you’re actually seeing yourself speaking your affirmation. So, perhaps this is when you’re doing your hair or makeup or shaving. Some people even like to have a coach or someone you’re comfortable with repeat your affirmation after you. If that makes you uncomfortable, try recording your affirmation sessions and playing them back. Lastly, there’s also the option to write or type your affirmation, which makes it easier to sneak in a session while you’re at the office. 

5. Tether Your Affirmation

Remember that area of your body that felt distressed as you were listing your negative trait? Put your hand over it. As you say your affirmation, try to breathe into it; it’s an additional step to help you relax and release tension within your body.

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