The Power Of Self-Affirmation Theory
According to Wikipedia, self-affirmation theory contends that if individuals reflect on values that are personally relevant to them, they are less likely to experience distress and react defensively when confronted with information that contradicts or threatens their sense of self. Claude Steele originally popularised self-affirmation theory in the late 1980s, and it remains a well-studied theory in social psychological research.
According to me, self-affirmations are an excellent way to break the cycle of self-loathing. They worked wonders with clients during coaching sessions, and affirmations are something I do on a daily basis.
Why do they work?
“The rationale behind the use of self-affirmation as a strategy to enhance self-control is that the act of self-affirmation allows people to respond in a manner that counters their automatic response tendency. In other words, self-affirmation counters habits of action, and this is the essence of self-control - our action is consciously volitional as opposed to habitual.” - Psychology Today.
Put more simply, reading affirmations stops the “talk” in your head and makes you think positively, especially if you are feeling bad. It is a form of meditation, an excellent way to stop, breathe and change the way you think about yourself.
Here are several I like to use together as one longer affirmation, but there are plenty of affirmations available on the internet, including apps that will send you a daily affirmation. Get online and have fun choosing your own affirmations to suit where you are in life and where you want to get to. Or write your own. Remember to read them daily.
Enjoy a new way of thinking about you because you are worth it.
Here are two of my favourite affirmations:
I am releasing my past.
I am now dissolving all negative, limiting beliefs.
I forgive and release everyone in my life.
I don’t have to try to please others. I am naturally lovable and likeable no matter what I do!
I now let go of all accumulated guilt fears, resentment, disappointments and grudges.
I am free and clear!
All my negative self-images and attitudes are now dissolved, I love and appreciate myself!
All barriers to my full expression and enjoyment of life are now dissolved.
The world is a beautiful place to be.
The universe always provides.
I am loving and healing myself on all levels-spiritual, mental, emotional and physical.
I honour and respect my body.
I listen to my body’s messages.
I am learning to take good care of myself.
I am kind to my body, and my body is good to me.
I deserve to be healthy and feel good.
My body is balanced, in perfect harmony with the earth and the universe.
I give thanks for ever-increasing health, beauty and vitality.
It’s natural to feel good.
Do you use affirmations?
If so, we would love for you to share your favourites.
Carolyn (Caz) Rowland is a fashion designer, model, lifestyle blogger and professional Image Stylist. Caz is also a qualified NLP Master Therapist, Advanced Practitioner of Matrix Therapies, Time Line Therapist, Practitioner of Hypnotherapy, has a Diploma for Business and Life Coaching. Caz is happily married to her husband Simon, and raised four beautiful children, who are now young adults and a teenager.