Have you ever told yourself over and over again that you are useless at something? It may be a subject, like Maths, or spelling, it could be cooking, painting or even singing. I know I have in the past and I’ve said it for so long that I truly believed it, I even laughed about it and told other people. It is what I considered to be true.
Have you ever told yourself how good you are at something? Probably not, that would be boasting, singing your own praises. In fact when somebody compliments you, you play it down. You don’t always believe them or can think of many other people who can do it better.
But Why? Why do we do this to ourselves? It programs our sub-conscious mind to believe it. Negativity said so many times becomes a truth. In fact, negative thoughts can affect our mood, confidence and esteem. Constantly thinking negative thoughts can make our general outlook negative and we can become depressed.
Now consider what would happen if we only told ourselves positive things. I am good at numbers, I am good at cooking, I am healthy, I am happy, I can do anything I put my mind to, I am calm and relaxed, I am successful, I am clever, People love me, I am a good friend and help others etc. Positive statements like these said over and over again is picked up by our sub-conscious mind who will in turn believe it to be true. We will become these things.
Positive affirmations work by sending positive thoughts about ourselves to the brain, which in turn releases chemicals related to that emotion. Therefore, the effectiveness of positive affirmations lie with linking them to our emotions and noting how good we feel when we say we can do what we say we can do, or we are what we say we are. They really are powerful, but do take time and effort. Positive affirmations have been used successfully to treat people with low self-esteem and can be wonderful for those ‘glass is half empty’ types.
Repeating positive statements several times a day, with the added use of visualisation and goal settling, can encourage and support us in turning negative comments around and changing the way we think. You really can re-train your brain to be more positive, believing in yourself and boosting your confidence.
Whilst I acknowledge some people’s views of ‘lying to yourself’ and ‘temporarily making ourselves feel better’ or ‘it is an escape from looking at the truth’ I believe that we need to look at the whole picture, understand our emotions and deal with them. It is not about brushing our fears and worries aside, but listening to them, acknowledging them, dealing with them and healing them. Positive affirmations can help us to do exactly that.
Calmer Kids helps children with their fears and anxieties, including turning their negative thoughts into positive ones and believing in themselves.