What Are Affirmations? and Should I Be Practicing Them Daily?
I feel like affirmations get a bad rap. When people hear them they think its a joke, or "not for them", but I'm here to tell you that they are FOR EVERYBODY!
In a nut shell, all affirmations are is repetitive positive self talk. That's it! And if I'm being completely honest, even I used to be skeptical of them, and maybe even mocked them at one point in time.
When I had decided to actually give them an honest try, I was at my lowest of low. You see, I was in an extremely verbally, physically, and mentally abusive marriage for 5+ years. Every single day I was told that I was worthless, I was ugly, I was fat, I was every horrible thing you could imagine. Prior to this marriage I was outgoing, bubbly, positive, happy, and a strong independent girl just trying to find her way in the world. I never imagined the things I went through could happen to me.
So, long story short at a certain point in time I realized that I wasn't who I used to be. I was beaten and broken in every sense of the words. Within that 5 years we had had a baby, who would end up becoming my saving grace, my angel. If it wasn't for him I would have given up, but knowing that he deserved a better life than the one I let myself fall into was all I needed to push me to do better.
One day I had reached my limit. That night when my then husband fell asleep, I grabbed the baby and the dog and left. I had nothing; no clothes, no shoes, no toothbrush. I was so terrified that he'd catch me in the process of leaving and what consequences I'd be facing, that I didn't care about anything but getting us out of there. With only 3 miles in the gas tank and $20 to my name, we made it.
So what does that have to do with affirmations? I'm glad you asked! You see, through those 5 years I had been mentally broken down to actually believe the things I was being told. So much so, it became a self fulfilling prophecy. I hated every single thing about myself. Once the captain of my college cheerleading squad, an outgoing social butterfly, now a torn down, broken, single mom.
Now what would happen over the next 5 years will completely blow your mind. My son, my dog and I crashed with family members while I worked 2 jobs full time. One as a groom at a prestigious dressage barn and a side gig cleaning stalls for private horse owners. I worked so much that my son was always in daycare. I worked every holiday, every birthday, and missed every milestone. Certainly this was better than the situation we lived in prior, but I was hungry for more. I wanted to be present in my son's life. And I didn't want to be killing myself at work to barely make ends meet. I really had nothing to lose so I started doing
research on self improvement. I listened to motivational speakers while cleaning stalls. Anything I could find. And that's where I learned about affirmations.
One day it just clicked.... maybe all the horrible things I thought about myself were only because I was basically brainwashed into believing them. Every single day for 5 years I was told negative things about myself. SOOOOO if it worked to break me down, it HAS to work to build me back up.
Eventually it became like clockwork. Every single morning while cleaning stalls at work I'd listen to positive affirmations. I am strong. I am successful. I am worthy. ect. ect. Flash forward another 5 years, I'm remarried, I now have 2 babies, we bought our first home to renovate together last Fall, I get to make my own schedule and work from home, and I never miss a single milestone with either one of my kids.
Now I'm not claiming that affirmations did all that, but it was most definitely the starting point. Telling myself and making myself believe that I am worthy and capable on a daily basis (and staying consistent even on the days it felt like a chore), gave me the confidence and mental strength I needed to push through and get to where I wanted to be in life.
So, call them affirmations, call it self talk, I don't care what you call it....... just do it! And do it consistently! You never know what dreams and goals you can accomplish over the next 5 years. You got this!