It’s time to get really honest with yourself.
Story: Carol Tuttle
In your life right now, what is stressing you out? What do you wish were different? Chances are, you don’t think or speak about that issue in positive terms. And that makes sense—it’s an issue you don’t like!
Here’s the problem: when you feel stressed, your thoughts contribute to feeling more stress. For example, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, you might say to yourself, “I’m so overwhelmed!” That thought leads you to notice everything piling up, which just continues and multiplies your feelings of being overwhelmed.
Consider the possibility that by training your mind to do more positive thinking, you may actually change stressful situations in your life. Can it really be that simple?
Why positive thinking is so powerful
Your thinking mind wants you to survive in the world. It’s always on the lookout for danger, watching for ways to keep you safe. When you’re overthinking, you get stuck in age-old patterns of looking for trouble. It stresses your body and adds anxiety to your life.
Positive thinking changes your brain chemistry and your energy. It allows you to become a calmer, more intentional version of yourself. As you offer a new you to the world, the world can show up for you in a different way. But how, exactly, do you change your thoughts when your mind wanders to worst-case scenarios? After all these are well-worn patterns in your brain that seem impossible to change. It can be simple.
Here’s your 3-step recipe for powerful affirmations
Train your brain to think positively using affirmations. Affirmations are clear, positive declarations of intent that begin with the phrase “I am.” You can create your own personalized affirmation to use like a mantra. Here’s how:
Identify what you don’t want
Yes, we’re talking about positive thinking. But starting with what you don’t want can simplify things. Most people hang out in this mental space every day; they don’t want to be late or stressed or anxious or fat. (Who would?) So they focus on what they want to prevent.
Go back to the issue that is stressing you out. How would you finish the sentence, “I don’t want…” Some examples: “I don’t want to be late,” “I don’t want to be tired and tense,” “I don’t want to struggle with food and weight anymore.”
Flip your negative statement to what you do want
If you could have the opposite of what you don’t want, what would it sound like? Sometimes, we don’t say what we want because we don’t actually know. Saying the opposite of what you don’t want can give you clarity about your actual desires.
State your desire in the form of “I am,” like this: “I am arriving with time to spare,” “I am calm and full of energy,” or “I am making healthy choices and feeling good in my body.”
Gratitude is one of the most significant emotional vibrations. Expressing gratitude starts a cycle that allows you to manifest more experiences for which you are grateful.
Adding gratitude looks like this: “I am grateful I arrive with time to spare,” “I am grateful I am calm and full of energy,” and, “I am grateful I make healthy choices and feel good in my body.”
“I am grateful I’m given the strength to see this through.”
“I am grateful I’m buoyed up each day.”
“I’m grateful I have patience during this experience.”
You have your personal affirmation—now what?
Once you identify your statement of positive thinking, write it down. Put it somewhere that you will see it regularly—a note on your mirror, the lock screen on your phone, a reminder alert in your calendar. Each time you see it, say it over to yourself like a mantra.
Think of this as training. Positive thinking is a mental exercise that affects every part of your day. Just like physical exercise, repetition and consistency give you long-term payoff.
Will positive thinking really make a difference?
At first, when you practice saying your positive affirmation aloud, it may not feel accurate. First of all, you can definitely “fake it till you make it.” Second of all, if your affirmation feels inauthentic, have you identified what you truly want to create?
For example, if you’re stressed about money, you could end up writing a positive affirmation that says, “I am grateful that I’m a millionaire.”
Is that what you really want?
Your thinking mind might say yes, but your true desire might sound more like this: “I am grateful that I have plenty of money to live my life’s purpose.”
Whatever you do, keep going, keep trying the formula, and refining as you go. Over and over, we can see that the most successful people—those who have healed their emotions and influenced the world in a positive way—have trained their thinking minds to think positively.
It’s time for you to commit to do that as well, so you can free up your mind and share your gifts with the world.
About the writer
Carol Tuttle is a teacher, speaker, healer, best-selling author of six books, and pioneer in the field of personal development. For more than 25 years, she has supported millions worldwide with her life-changing books and online courses. Her sixth book, “Mastering Affluence,” guides you through six transformative lessons to create a life you love. Learn more at caroltuttle.com.