Positive affirmations are the ‘in’ thing these days. Many people include them as part of meditation or prayer time, posting them in key locations to be seen throughout the day. Most affirmations are derived by creating positive statements that reflect who I want to be or my best self, i.e. “I am beautiful, gorgeous and sexy”. This is a great strategy, but not highly effective.
Affirmations must directly correlate to a core wound or they miss they mark for lasting and sustainable change. The diagram below shows the magnitude of a core wound relative to randomly chosen affirmations. They are no match for that default program that is sabotaging your life in places you may not even see.
The affirmations that create the greatest impact are those directly related to the hidden, unconscious beliefs running amuck in our minds like a virus on a hard drive. How do you find those limiting beliefs?
I use this simple four-step process. Simple, does not mean easy. This takes some time with courage, curiosity, compassion and support.
- Think of a trigger moment or situation in your life. What is your ‘hot thought’ in that moment? E.g. You don’t respect me.
- What is your greatest fear if your ‘hot thought’ statement were true? What is the worst thing that would happen if your ‘hot thought’ were true? E.g. If you don’t respect me, you won’t be my friend.
- Take your answer to #2 and ask yourself the two questions again to boil this down. Be patient with yourself, it may take a few goes. E.g. If I don’t have friends, I will be alone.
- If your final answers in #3 were true, what would that say about you? E.g. If I am alone then I am worthless.
Repeat this process to uncover at least three or four of your core wounds (old messages).
An affirmation that has teeth and sticking power against “I am worthless” is generally not a 180 degree flip, e.g. “I have infinite worth”. Our brains are much smarter than that and won’t play along. Something like “I am valuable” would be much stronger. Notice the statement is not referring to one situation or quality and is applicable in all areas of life. The best affirmation statements are simple, believable and actually stir some emotion for you as you say it. If you think it is funny or ridiculous, try another wording or phrase.
When we take the time to dig down and find the root of the wound (old message) and the statements that effectively counteract them (new message), shift is possible.
If you already have affirmations and just needs some tweaking, great! If you are starting from scratch, now is the time! Use this simple process get on standing up to and removing the old messages that have kept you small until now. Live large!