What do you think of when you hear the term morning affirmations?
This is similar to what I asked a friend of mine recently, already suspecting her reply.
She answered with three letters…UGH!
Although I couldn’t see her at the time, I would bet money she rolled her eyes too.
I get it.
Affirmations are the stuff of Stuart Smalley sketches on Saturday Night Live.
What are your morning affirmations?
The thing is that we all have affirmations whether we know it or not.
I know that is going to tick some of you off, but you do.
I’ll bet every person reading this has at least one morning affirmation.
Do you get up with an alarm?
What do you say when that alarm goes off?
What do you say about mornings?
Do you say I hate mornings?
I’m not a morning person.
It’s too early for this garbage. (or something like that)
I need coffee.
Those are affirmations.
They simply affirm things about you and your life.
The problem with affirmations
Most people think affirmations are weird and “woo woo”, but they’re not.
Elite athletes use them.
Top business people use them.
The trick is to create affirmations that work for you, and they don’t have to be warm and fuzzy, unless you want them to be.
Look, you’re not going to go from “I hate forking mornings” to “I am a beloved child of the Universe” for several reasons.
In the first place, affirmations aren’t about making a quantum shift in your thinking right now.
Successful affirmations make small shifts that take you a step closer to who and how you want to be in the world.
If you’re already exactly who and how you want to be, you don’t need affirmations to get where you want to go, you need visualization, but I caution you.
If you want to change your life and start using visualization, odds are you’ll need to change something about you to get there.
That’s where affirmations come in.
The practicality of affirmations
So let’s take an example.
Let’s say you want to improve your financial situation.
Lots of people pick a goal and try to use that as an affirmation.
They say, “I make a million dollars per year” or something like that.
They have no connection to making a million dollars, so that idea doesn’t stick, and they think affirmations don’t work.
But, what if you change the approach?
What if, instead of being very specific about the end goal, you stay more general?
You could start with, “Every day I look for opportunities to improve my finances”?
Do you see the difference?
You may not be able to jump up to making a million dollars, but you certainly can look for opportunities every day, and the affirmation reminds you to do that.
You can substitute any number of things for finance – home, health, working conditions, relationship with my children, parents or life partner.
It really is that simple, and it shifts your thinking just a little bit.
It doesn’t happen overnight
I know this sounds simple, and it is, but it isn’t always easy.
If you’ve never done this before, you will feel somewhere on a scale of silly to stupid.
You will say this is the dumbest thing you’ve ever done, and you will be tempted to quit.
I double dog dare you not to.
Instead, think about whose words those are that tell you that?
If you learned how to create powerful morning affirmations or any other kind as a child, this wouldn’t seem silly at all.
It would be as normal as brushing your teeth.
Someone put the idea in your head that you shouldn’t talk to yourself in an affirming way.
That was one of the most powerful things I ever learned.
If you have a struggle in your life, I guarantee someone you saw as an authority helped or created that struggle in some way.
A personal story
When I was a child, I was very skinny and didn’t eat much.
Having grandparents who lived through the depression, I was told over and over that wasting food was a terrible thing to do.
Leaving food on my plate was an insult to the cook.
I should eat the food in front of me because it was a privilege to have it.
It didn’t matter that I was full.
It didn’t matter whether I liked the food.
Finishing the food was the only thing that mattered.
Needless to say, I lost my ability to self-regulate portion sizes.
It took an affirmation like “I make healthier decisions for myself and my family every day” to shift from a super sized food consumer to someone who self regulates portion sizes.
I’ve lost 25 pounds to date and will keep telling myself what I need to in order to get healthier and drop the weight I’ve carried for years.
When you master the shift
So, you think of these great affirmations, and you practice them for a while.
So say them in your head until you see changes in your behavior.
In two and a half years, my husband and I used affirmations to stay focused on getting out of debt so we could help our children graduate from college debt free.
Then, your circumstances change and the shift you mastered doesn’t work anymore.
So what do you do then?
You make a new affirmation.
In getting out of debt, we focused on having zero credit card debt.
It was exciting watching that number go down every month, but as soon as that number his zero, our goal and our affirmations changed.
We shifted from moving away from what we didn’t want and toward what we did.
Instead of getting rid of debt, we started building wealth.
The possibility of our sons graduating from college debt free became an affirming mantra we focus on to this day.
We have graduated two sons who are both gainfully employed without educational debt.
When we were $36,000 in credit card debt, that felt impossible, but we started with the affirmation to reduce then eliminate the debt and moved to saving money for our sons’ college education.
And now, while we still have one child in college, we are now shifting to when and how we want to retire, so the affirming never ends.
All this from morning affirmations?
I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true.
Your morning affirmations don’t have to be sunshine and rainbows.
It could simply be “I can do this” or “I am learning to love my life” or “I get better each day”
A couple of my favorites right now are “I live and behave like the woman I aspire to be”, and “I live my best life every day and let the rest go”.
They make me feel strong and powerful and that’s the beauty of affirmations.
I learned years ago that when you change your words you change your life.
I learned that through books that changed by life, and books that continue to change my life even now.
I’ve included some of them here.
Each of these book will challenge you in some way, and if you follow what they suggest, will also change your life for the better in every way.
So, are you ready to try a few morning affirmations to see what happens?
I hope so, because you deserve to have the life you dream of without affirmations that make you feel stupid.
Give it a go!