Affirmations: Benefits and Dangers of Positive Thinking
Affirmation is a short statement, which contains positive setting to change life to better. It means confirmation in Latin. Affirmation is exercised in positive psychology that helps person to better himself. Repeated reproduction of convincing statement «sets» mind in a right direction so that there is no real difference between reality and internal feelings. Person feels the way his mind is changing during a course of auto-training.
There are positive and negative affirmations. Daily repeating of verbal formula «I believe in myself» helps to improve self-esteem. If one keeps thinking that «he is not lucky», then he really won’t be lucky in real life. The goal of positive thinking to detect and substitute harmful thoughts with right and useful ones.
Approach to psychotherapy and personal development is based on self-hypnosis. It was developed by French pharmacist and psychologist Émile Coué (1857-1926). Coué noted that patient, who is convinced in efficiency of medicine, will recover faster (placebo effect). Causes of illnesses can all be found in person’s imagination. And one should change his way of thinking by regular repeating of simple positive statements to heal them. Repeated sayings like «I am recovering», «I can» will change the way mind is working and will help to make person wish to change his life to better and achieve his goals. Psychologist was checking the statements in a course of continuous experimentation: he was developing medical programs and giving lectures and conducting trainings.
Interpreter of theory of «efficient ways of thinking», Louise Hay established self-help movement and charity fund to work with people with AIDS. She has written many books on popular psychology. Louise based her work on research conducted by Émile Coué, she has improved affirmation methodology. Causes of psychological problems, vital disorders and different physical ailments lie in destructive belief and negative emotions, which were not lived through. Heal your body and soul by repeating positive statements on a regular basis. Affirmations are divided into personal, money, love and health-related ones.
The Right Ways to Compose Affirmations
- Write short, well understandable and nice statements which will evoke positive emotions once repeated for many times. Short statements are better perceived by your subliminal mind than complex wordings.
- Form statements to contradict negative program that prevents you from reaching your goal.
- Use pronouns «I», «Me» to reinforce personal focus of affirmations.
- Sentences with verbs used in present time should help to perceive setting as a real fact.
- Your mind doesn’t notice word «no», sentence is just understood as opposite to what it really means. Substitute positive words «I am not sick» to «I am healthy» to avoid unconscious setting to sickness.
- Affirmation is a personal practice. Repeating positive or negative sentences to change behavior of other people won’t result in anything. One will just waste his time and energy to this useless thing.
- You should formulate affirmations on your own. Person is capable to choose right words taking into consideration own goals and feelings that he experiences repeating the affirmations for many times in a row.
The Ways to Pronounce Affirmations
- Repeat affirmations when you are in positive mood.
- Believe in what you are saying and foresee that your life will change to better side.
- You should get emotionally involved into the act of pronouncing the affirmations. Create nice environment, look to the mirror and check out your face, try out different intonations and gestures when you are telling affirmations out loud. If you will just be repeating them without real thinking about what you are saying, the result won’t be that satisfying.
- Beginning stage of positive thinking therapy enables mechanical reproduction of affirmations with a loud voice. Regular exercises will help to set mind in a right and positive direction. You won’t doubt that reality doesn’t correspond to your sayings. So, it will help you to stop putting negative thoughts to your mind. Words and thoughts will become the one. Positive statements will «stay» in your mind and you will pronounce them at the back of your mind.
- Positive statements are pronounced out loud and at the back of your mind. You can sing them and listen via player as well as write them in posters and stick them to the walls.
- Listen to yourself. If you are not much into affirmations, just invent sentences, which you will really like.
Dangers of Positive Thinking
Thoughtless belief in the curative effect of affirmations can be life-threatening. Repetition of the words “I am healthy” does not help in case of appendicitis. Failure to accept appropriate health care and take medicines may lead to death. Be sensible when you are using affirmations.
Benefits of Affirmations
- They may develop certain abilities. Setting «I am attentive» won’t contradict reality. Person has different active and inactive qualities. Right affirmation may help to wake up «sleeping» abilities.
- It may replace the phrases which are discordant with reality. Positive attitude towards others will strengthen and align statement such as “People are different. You can’t be friends with everyone.” The phrase “all people are good” will not work.
- Affirmations help to achieve dreams. «I am very stubborn», «I can do it…» – these affirmations will help you to achieve doable things.
The use of positive autogenic training requires a critical approach. You can’t think of an affirmation as a panacea that will help to heal ailments without medical treatment and right lifestyle as it is dangerous to health. Positive thoughts help to achieve desired result when they are supported by real actions.