Your recovery journey requires using a variety of tools to heal and strengthen from the inside out. One of these tools isn’t new to the world of mental health, but it is quite effective. From entrepreneurs to yogis, people of all walks of life have recognized the power that positive affirmations have on changing thought and behavior. If you’re struggling with low self-esteem, low confidence, or body dysmorphia, you too can experience the benefits of using positive affirmations.
How Affirmations Work
Affirmations are positive statements that describe the reality you want to create for yourself. They can be goals you want to reach, beliefs you want to embrace, or reminders of how you want to act. It’s important that they’re realistic and grounded in your values to prevent them from backfiring which can lead you to believe in false realities.
You will repeat these statements daily, usually at a set time. You can recite them in front of a mirror, include them in a meditation exercise, or record and listen to them. You can also use affirmations when you’re dealing with stressful or triggering situations. They can be used to return you to a state of calmness or to clear your mind.
By saying these affirmations over and over you’re rewiring the way you think which affects how you feel and act. This practice can also help you calm down in emotional circumstances, so you can respond appropriately.
Examples of Affirmations
If you’re interested in using positive affirmations, consider some of the statements below to get familiar with the practice. It’s important to remember to exclude statements that include “don’t” such as, “don’t cry today” or “don’t feel bad.” While we understand what the phrase means, our brains latch onto the words “don’t” and “cry.” This turns the positive affirmation into a negative one and instructs the body to “cry” or “feel bad.”
Five affirmations to get you started:
- One day at a time.
- Growth and change take time.
- Progress, not perfection, is my goal.
- My life has value and purpose.
- I am responsible for my happiness.
Five affirmations specific to body image:
- There is more to me than my body. My size or attractiveness does not define who I am.
- My value does not come from my appearance. Nothing can diminish my value.
- I am capable of much more than being thin or sexy. I have more important gifts to contribute to this world than how I look.
- My body is an instrument for good, not an ornament for display. I can do amazing things thanks to my mind and body.
- Treating my body with respect leads to health and joy.
Remember, these alone are not enough to create lasting mental change. To gain the full power of affirmations, use them as part of a comprehensive recovery plan. Whether you’re overcoming an eating disorder or battling a mental illness, you can find help and healing at The Light Program.