Holla! I am back after having taken a week off to get myself grounded, to pull myself out of my negative headspace I was stuck in, like being trapped in a six foot hole and being able to see the blue sky at the top but not having the upper body strength to pull myself up. Anyway, that is not what I want to tell you about, because I think writing about that negative headspace will just send me back down the rabbit hole. Instead I am going to talk to you about two factors that have been setting me up for productive days.
Four months ago I wrote about my morning routine (if you missed it, read it here) which I still follow most days, I say most because because some days I roll out of bed and have no intentions of being one of those people who have a morning routine, period. I do however make sure I work out every morning (except Sunday) because a. I train harder in the mornings and b. it means I've already completed one thing from my to do list. The two things I want to discuss (one way discussion, sorry!) are affirmations and goal setting, two things that I think (now) are very important to be productive and positive, and have somewhat helped me pull myself out of my hole (yep, I know how that sounds but I'm not changing it). Because of how long this post is, I have split it into part one and part two, in part one I am going to talk about affirmations- what they are, why they are helpful ect ect, and in part two that will be posted on Thursday I am going to talk about goal setting and all things surrounding goal setting. Sorry, I have a lot to say apparently.
If you are anything like me you probably would have seen people on Instagram showing their affirmations daily and rolling your eyes and skipping their story- because that was what I used to do, when I didn't really understand what affirmations are and how they can give you a helping hand. What made me look into affirmations was an article that I read on self confidence, I was still so skeptical and scrunched my nose at the idea for a little while, but once I had more of an understanding I pretty much thought "what the hell" and decided I would try for a week, if I didn't think it did anything than I could stop, but I had to give it a week. It has been probably three weeks now that I have been making myself read / say affirmations every morning before I do any work.
So, what are affirmations and why the hell are you trying them out?
Have you heard the phrase "you are what you think you are"? Do you understand it? That if we think we have certain qualities and features about ourself, we are going to start transforming into our thoughts. I feel like I know this to be true, my thoughts are the main contribution to how I feel- I think depressive thoughts, I am depressed, you see what I mean?
Affirmations work by translating positive thoughts into words and then into actions. It is all about manifesting our intentions using words. So many studies have been done on affirmations and a lot of the evidence has proven that this is a powerful way to reprogram our brains and make positive changes within ourselves. These positive, powerful statements about yourself will help you overcome and challenge the daunting, self-sabotaging, negative thoughts that can all to often enter your space. Please remember that affirmations one work if you repeat them- often. You cannot say one once and then expect it to be magic cure, you need to have reposition, several times a day if necessary.
Affirmations have been shown to have the following benefits:
- help to raise ones self confidence;
- have more control over negative feelings;
- improve self esteem;
- improve productivity;
- overcome bad habits that have formed.
Endless studies have been done into affirmations, curious to see if they really work or they really don't. The evidence is motive however, and has been used to help in the treatment of mental illness, improve work ethic and performance and improve peoples self worth.
It was these benefits that helped me to make the decision to give affirmations a go, to really try and make a positive change- because I wanted to take back control of the negative feelings I was having all to often and I wanted to be more productive in day to day life. My thoughts were that if this was potentially going to help me leave my negative headspace, why the hell should I not try it.
You can create your own affirmations to suit your thoughts and goals, but if you scowl the internet there is also lists upon lists of affirmations that you can use to better yourself. For the first week I stayed with affirmations that I had found on the web, not yet confident in myself that I could make my own affirmation and believe them. So, below I am going to list some of the best affirmations I found, that if you wanted to, you could always try as well.
- "I possess the qualities needed to be extremely successful."
- "Every day of my life is filled with love."
- "Happiness is a choice. I base my happiness on my own accomplishments and the blessings I have been given."
- "I love everything about my body."
- "My body is healthy and full of energy."
- "Today, I abandon my old habits and start new, more positive ones."
- "I am conquering my illness; I am defeating it steadily each day."
- "I have the power, right now, to decide my future."
And now, if you want to try it out for yourself- these are the few key points that I follow when making my own affirmations- because at first I was completely lost on if I was doing it right (hint: I wasn't).
- Present tense, always. Keep your affirmations in the present, you're going to feel this now, do this now ect. Words such as "I used to" and "I will" aren't all that helpful- you want your affirmation to affect you now.
- Statements that are spoken to be factual or truthful are more effective than saying "I might.." or "Maybe..". No, you need to be firm, "I am..., "I do.."
- Stay clear of including negative words anywhere in your affirmation, these are supposed to be positive statements. "can't", "won't" ect, get rid of them.
- Be straightforward and simple- simple.
Look, affirmations aren't going to be for everyone- I know that and I completely understand it, I told you I was skeptical myself. But, I want to challenge you to the exact same thing that I did- try it out for a week, seven days that is all. After that week you can either choose to say "yeah, screw that" or you can continue on and potentially see the benefits- the choice is yours.
Part Two on goal setting on Thursday~!!