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Positive self-talk and affirmations are handy tools on the path to self-discovery and personal growth. Affirmations are positive statements that can change how we think and make us feel better about ourselves.
Positive self-talk can help you feel more confident, in charge, and happy with your life. This article looks at what affirmations are and how they affect self-esteem. I also give examples of body-positive affirmations that will inspire and uplift you.
Let's learn more about the power of affirmations and how they can help us understand and love ourselves more.
Understanding Affirmations and Their Impact on Self-Esteem
Affirmations are short, simple statements that try to challenge and change negative thoughts and beliefs. They connect our conscious minds to our subconscious minds and have an effect on how we think and act. Positive affirmations can help change the way our brains work so that self-doubt and criticism are replaced by self-confidence and positivity. Affirmations are powerful because they help us shift our attention from what we think are our flaws to what we are good at and what we can do.
This isn’t to say that we are ignoring our fears, doubts, or negative thoughts. We are acknowledging them and releasing them because holding onto negative thoughts can hold us back. Becoming confident that you can work through your fears, worries, and doubts will give you the ability to live your life with positivity.
The Impact of Affirmations on Self-Esteem:
Affirmations help us tune into our inner world and become more in tune with our feelings and thoughts. We learn more about who we are as people when we accept and work through our emotions.
Our brains zero in on what we say out loud or in our thoughts. So when you say an affirmation, your brain focuses on that. If you keep thinking, “I am always late,” you will probably always be late, but if you think, “I do my best to be punctual,” you will mostly be on time (unless there is something out of your control like an unexpected traffic jam).
This isn’t magic; this is due to the reticular activating system being activated.
The reticular activating system (RAS) is a network of neurons in the brain stem that sends projections to the hypothalamus to control behavior and to the thalamus and directly to the cortex to activate awake, desynchronized EEG patterns in the cortex.
The RAS will then focus on what will help you be on time rather than freaking out over what will make you constantly late.
This video explains a bit more of what I am talking about.
Two for You: Take two minutes to live and lead with intention
RAS (Reticular Activating System). (n.d.). Positive Psychology | UMN Extension. https://extension.umn.edu/two-you-video-series/ras
Affirmations are an excellent way to boost your self-esteem by encouraging you to think positively about yourself. Constantly reminding ourselves of our value helps us stockpile courage for when we really need it.
When my clients are working on improving their confidence, one of the activities they do is look back at what they have accomplished so far. We frequently forget how many goals, big or small, we have accomplished.
We then compile a "resume of achievements" in every aspect of their lives and recognize and appreciate their accomplishments.
Combining a list of previously accomplished goals with positive affirmations will help us boost our self-esteem. And as your confidence grows, you lose your doubts and fears, and you become unstoppable.
Resilience to Negativity
Affirmations can help you fight against negative thoughts and feelings that come from inside and outside of you. Positive affirmations help us question and reject beliefs that hold us back, making us better able to handle constructive criticism.
When I am training at the gym and I feel like giving up halfway through a difficult exercise, I tell myself (don’t laugh) “I’m a bad bitch and I can do this. I will do this because I know I can.” To be honest, now that I think about it, I use this phrase often even outside of the gym. And you know what? It works!
What will be your go-to affirmation when you need an instant confidence boost?
Here is the formula:
Start with “I am” + state what you will achieve (in the present tense) = affirmation
Body-Positive Affirmations for You to Use
For healthy self-esteem, it's important to love the way you look. Here are some affirmations about your body that you can use to love and respect it:
- "I am beautiful just the way I am, inside and out."
- "My body deserves love and care, and I will treat it with kindness."
- "I celebrate the unique shape and size of my body; it is perfect for me."
- "I am more than my physical appearance; my worth extends beyond looks."
- "My body allows me to experience the world and achieve my dreams."
- "I will not compare myself to others, as I am incomparable and extraordinary in my own right."
- "I am grateful for my body's strength and resilience; it serves me well every day."
Practicing Positive Self-Talk and Challenging Negative Thoughts
Positive self-talk is a skill that you can get better at with practice and hard work. Consider the following steps if you want to use affirmations effectively in your daily life:
- Start small: Start with just a few affirmations that really speak to you. As you get used to the process, you can gradually add to your list.
- Be Present: Use affirmations in the present tense when you practice them. This makes it more likely that you'll start to think that these good qualities are part of who you are.
- Repetition is Key: Repeating positive self-talk is key to making it stick. Say affirmations as part of your daily routine, like when you wake up or before you go to sleep.
- Believe in Yourself: When you use affirmations, go into them with an open mind and a willingness to really believe in their power. Believe that good changes will happen with time and effort.
- Challenge Negative Thoughts: When negative self-talk starts to creep in, fight it with positive thoughts. Instead of being hard on yourself, be kind and understanding.
It’s very important that you do not ignore your negative thoughts. Life isn’t about toxic positivity.
There is a reason why negative thoughts creep in. This is something you will need to work on on your own or with a professional. But you can start rerouting the negative thoughts and reframing them.
For example, “I’m so stupid, I burnt the eggs again”.
- Are you really and truly stupid?
- How did you get this far in life if you were stupid?
- Why is it ok to call yourself stupid?
- Who called you stupid before?
- Do their words matter more than yours?
- Did you burn the eggs because you are actually a person who is stupid?
- Or did you burn them because you were careless?
- Or because you were multitasking?
- Or because you forgot they were on the stove?
So you can change “I’m so stupid, I burnt the eggs again”, to “I was too busy multitasking I burnt the eggs. I am a human who makes mistakes and I can simply try again and pay attention this time”.
This is going to take a lot of practice and patience but over time you won’t even have to think about it. You will be able to speak to yourself about yourself positively without even trying. I speak from personal experience!
Affirmations can have a profound effect on our sense of well-being and confidence. The way we see ourselves and the world can be completely changed through the practice of positive self-talk and the use of body-positive affirmations. Remember that boosting your confidence is an ongoing process that starts with acknowledging your own value and potential. So, start using affirmations right away to boost your self-confidence and enjoy a more successful and satisfying life.
The Daily Affirmations Handbook
- Understand what positive affirmations are and how they work to manifest your desires.
- Learn why you should use affirmations every day to attract what you most desire into your life.
- Discover how to make affirmations work for you and what you need to do to ensure they are effective.
- Discover powerful affirmations for attracting better health.
- Learn effective positive affirmations for attracting wealth.
- Obtain a list of affirmations for attracting happiness into your life.
- Discover how to attract success in your life with powerful affirmations
- You’ll learn how positive affirmations affect your subconscious mind and how it will ultimately build a positive and optimistic mental attitude.
- Transform your negative mindset to one that is positive and gain the strength and courage to believe in yourself and follow your dreams.
- Dramatically change your life for the better and build a positive, feel-good frame of mind.
- Gain a way to effectively battle negative thoughts that keep you from accomplishing your dreams.
- Change your negative self-talk into positive self-talk and watch as more doors open for you to accomplish amazing things in your life.
- Perform better academically, athletically, and at work.
- Enjoy a lower level of stress every day.
- Discover how to incorporate creative visualization techniques to make your positive affirmations more powerful and manifest your desires in less time.
- And much more!
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As a passionate personal trainer, women's fitness specialist, life coach, and nutrition coach, I am dedicated to helping you achieve your health and fitness goals. With years of experience in the fitness industry, I am committed to empowering and guiding you on your journey toward a healthier, happier you. Let's work together to unlock your full potential and create a sustainable, balanced approach to fitness, nutrition, and overall well-being. Get ready to transform your life!