Affirmations: What the hell are they and how do I even use them?

I know I know.  We hear the term "affirmations" thrown around a ton.

And I know, it sounds totally hokey.

And new age-y hippy dippy bullshit, right?

Or that people who use them are "not being realistic" or "pretending everything is ok."

Affirmations are sentences and phrases meant to alter your conscious and subconscious mind to create a more positive headspace.  By repeating affirmations out loud or in your head, you automatically create visuals for those words (whether you realize it or not) which, in turn, help to change behaviors, actions, reactions and habits.  

In a nutshell, affirmations are kickass things you want to be true.

For example, here are a few from the affirmations guru herself, Louise Hay:

"I love and approve of myself."

"I trust the process of life.  I am safe."

"Money flows freely to me, and my income is constantly increasing."

"All is well in my world"

And it doesn't have to be her affirmations.  You can totally make up your own for whatever you want to be true in your life.  Do some googling to find some if you're feeling stuck, or take some time to journal out what you want to attract into your life.

Alright, so once you have your affirmations, what the hell do you even do with them?

The most important thing is that you repeat them daily, or ideally a few times a day.  Set them as alarms on your phone to go off every few hours. Stick them on post-it's around your computer screen.  Write them on the bathroom mirror.  Make it your phone background.  Anything that's going to remind you of that phrase.

And here's where I lose people.  How the hell will repeating a phrase help me get this kickass thing I want?

The biggest thing is that it helps to re-wire your brain.  As kids, we form neurological pathways based on the experiences we have, which then in turn create habits from that experience.  

For example, maybe when you were very young you once got reprimanded by a teacher for being too loud or outspoken.  You were maybe punished, which then tells your young developing brain that when you speak, you get in trouble.  Your brain solidifies that pathway, so now the idea of speaking in front of groups of people makes you anxious as fuck.

When you're able to look at it with some space as an adult, you know that it's an over-reaction, but you still can't help those nerves that pop up, right?  That's because our brain developed that pathway.  It's there now, even though you try to tell yourself to "calm down" the physical reaction is still happens.

But you know what's cool?  You can actually re-wire those pathways in your brain!  Crazy right?  It takes some time, but by repeating affirmations to yourself, you help to change up your reaction to different potentially stressful situations.  

Those habits we developed as kids served a purpose at the time (mostly, to help us feel safe) but they no longer serve us, and it's time to let them go.

So this week, pick one affirmation and post it below.  Then, post that shit everywhere.  And if you post it in your social media, use the hashtag #themagicofmindset so I can find you!

Here's the deal sister.  Affirmations are just one of the many tools available to us in our journey to healing our bodies and having killer energy.  But if it doesn't resonate with you, don't beat yourself up over it.  But also, don't just write it off without giving it solid chance to work some magic.