How many times have you opened up your Facebook or Instagram or Pinterest only to see a huge long post about how if you only “self-affirmed yourself for 30 days” your entire thinking would shift, your brain would rewire itself and you would finally FINALLY be able to:
-lose the weight
-make more money
-have more motivation
Sounds great, right? Easy enough to try out.
Ahem. Um…how’s that been working out for you?
It hasn’t gotten you ANYWHERE.
Now, I’ll concede that identifying a mantra or a list of affirmations to help change the internal dialogue in your head and making a daily habit of telling yourself more positive things than negative things can have an affect…but a life-changing effect?
We throw around the phrase life-changing way too much in our culture. Like, way too much.
I am guilty of this myself and I have certainly fallen into this traditional pop-culture self-affirmation way of thinking.
“If I only could talk to myself differently, I’d finally have [x]”
“If I only rewired my brain to love money, I’d be a millionaire”
“If only I affirmed the fact that I am a magnificent, beautiful, creative, strong, awesome unicorn, I would finally tap into my potential and things are really going to start taking off for me!”
You know what?
I call bullsh*t.
You want to know the absolute ONLY way I have ever found a way to self-affirm in a way that brings results?
Shutting up and doing the work.
It is as simple as that.
Here are two scenarios:
Suzy realizes that she is lacking in confidence in her ability to lose weight. She also realizes that she is pretty negative with her internal dialogue about it. She beats herself up about almost every food choice, she goes through cycles of shame and guilt, tries to conjure up the motivation and discipline to change and very little if anything ever happens. She decides to repeat an affirmation every morning for 30 days and actually sticks to it. She gets some pleasure from saying nice things to herself and becomes more aware of the negative things she was saying all the time.
Fast forward 30 days…where is Suzy now? Most likely in the exact same spot, just with a slightly more optimistic outlook and an alarm on her phone that goes off at 7am every morning telling herself to say out loud in the mirror, “I am strong. I am capable. Day by day I am getting better and closer to losing weight.”
Now let’s take a look at the next story.
Betty realizes that she is lacking confidence in her ability to lose weight. She also realizes that she is pretty negative with her internal dialogue about it. She beats herself up about almost every food choice, she goes through cycles of shame and guilt, tries to conjure up the motivation and discipline to change and very little if anything ever happens. She decides to commit to walking for 15 minutes a day for 30 days in the evenings and decides she will go longer than that on the days she feels like it. She falls in love with the time to herself, the feeling of warmth in her muscles, and the clear thinking that results during and after her walks.
Fast forward 30 days…where is Betty now? In a very different place! She has lost 7 lbs, is finding that her ability to handle stress has gone up, she is sleeping better, and her confidence in her ability to continue making progress is in a great spot.
So, in which scenario was there more self-affirmation?
By definition, affirmation means to offer emotional support or encouragement.
At the end of the 30 days, which person had offered themselves more emotional support or encouragement?
If we look at it through the lens of what we say…someone might say, Suzy.
If we look at it through the lens of what we do…clearly the answer is Betty.
Most importantly, if we look at the results, we quickly start to realize that the purest and most powerful form of self-affirmation comes not from changing what we say to ourselves, rather changing what we do for ourselves.
Think about one area in your life where you have exhausted trying to change through words alone and go do something new!
In just over 13 minutes, in this podcast episode, Zach discusses self-affirmations in a way that will provide you crystal clear clarity on when the value of self-affirmation is needed and when it has run its course.
Don’t Forget. Get the guide! Be sure to download this episode’s companion guide below to get more information on Rebooted Body, check out my favorite wellness tool, and see a recap on the show and how to get started taking action!
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