Here's how I look at affirmations. They're kind of dumb. But they kind of work, too. (And they can be very lovely in a world filled with a lot of toxic dreck.)
My favorite affirmations come from a woman named Louise Hay whose book "You Can Heal Your Life" is one of the most popular, most beloved, most well-reviewed self-help books of all time.
Her whole philosophy is that health problems are connected to mental beliefs. Yeah, I know. This is where we get into wacky dangerous "The Secret" territory, but if your mind is open to some of it, who knows, maybe you'll see the same positive effect that I have in my life.
Please know: I would never NOT get medical treatment because I said an affirmation, obviously, but I think it can change a worried, freaked-out, sick-with-anxiety state to something way more positive. As someone who has grappled with severe anxiety throughout my life, I've found affirmations incredibly soothing and a wonderful part of self-nurturing and self-care.
At the very least, if you're going into an obsessive hypochondriac spiral, it helps get your head in a more positive space while you wait for your doctor appointment, rather than thinking on repeat, "I have a rash. I've never noticed it before. I'm probably dying. Everything in my life is shit. I'm probably going to get cancer. I probably have cancer. I think my boyfriend's cheating on me. My life is going nowhere. I hate my job. Everything sucks. Life sucks. Why do I even bother. FUUUUUUUUUUUUU--"
Why not have something positive you can tell yourself in place of freaking negative thought loops? Right? Or at the very least, you can make fun of these. (All affirmations below are courtesy of Louise Hay. So if you're into it, do buy her app, because there's like a zillion more in there. These are just the highlights.)
Also -- if you have one of these issues, I'm curious if her whole "probable cause" philosophy rings true to you. For example, I told a friend with a UTI what the Louise Hay probable cause was, and she said, "Holy shit. That's it exactly." So who knows. Anyway, go crazy! Affirmation time! Affirmation party! Affirmation city, baby!
Uh, yeah. Here are some affirmations from Louise Hay.
Probable cause: Inability to speak up for the self. Rebellion against authority. Belief in violence.
New affirmation: I release the pattern in me that created this. I am at peace. I am worthwhile.
Probable cause: Longing for love. Longing to be held.
New thought pattern: I love and approve of myself. I am loving and lovable.
Probable cause: Not accepting the self. Dislike of the self.
New thought pattern: I am a divine expression of life. I love and accept myself where I am right now.
Probable cause: Running from the self. Fear. Not knowing how to love the self.
New thought pattern: I now discover how wonderful I am. I choose to love and enjoy myself.
Probable cause: Not trusting the flow and the process of life.
New thought pattern: I love and approve of myself, and I trust the process of life. I am safe.
Probable cause: Anxiety. Holding on to old ideas. Fear of letting go. Being pissed off.
New thought pattern: I comfortably and easily release the old and welcome the new in my life. I am safe.
Probable cause: Fear of letting go of the old and no longer needed.
New thought pattern: I freely and easily release the old and joyously welcome the new.
Probable cause: A refusal to nourish the self. Putting everyone else first. Overmothering. Overprotection. Overbearing attitudes.
New thought pattern: I am important. I count. I now care for and nourish myself with love and with joy. I allow others the freedom to be who they are. We are all safe and free.
Probable cause: The little bumps in life. Self-punishment.
New thought pattern: I love and cherish myself. I am kind and gentle with me. All is well.
Probable cause: Represents the ability to feel and express the emotions in positive ways.
New thought pattern: I am free to circulate love and joy in every part of my world. I love life.
Probable cause: Too much going on at once. Mental confusion, disorder. Small hurts. "I get three colds every winter," type of beliefs.
New thought pattern: I allow my mind to relax and be at peace. Clarity and harmony are within me and around me. All is well.
Probable cause: Anger you feel you do not have a right to have. Hopelessness.
New thought pattern: I now go beyond other people's fears and limitations. I create my life.
Probable cause: Not liking what you see in your own life.
New thought pattern: I now create a life I love to look at.
Probable cause: Resistance, boredom. Lack of love for what one does.
New thought pattern: I am enthusiastic about life and filled with energy and enthusiasm.
Probable cause: Nursing those old hurts. Building resentments.
New thought pattern: I easily forgive. I love myself and will reward myself with thoughts of praise.
Probable cause: Fear. Fear. Fear. Clutching fear.
New thought pattern: I breathe freely and fully. I am safe. I trust the process of life.
Probable cause: Fear. Not trusting the process of life. Guilt.
New thought pattern: I lovingly release the day and slip into peaceful sleep, knowing tomorrow will take care of itself.
Probable cause: Anger. Resentment. Desire for revenge.
New thought pattern: I am willing to change the patterns in me that created this condition. I love and approve of myself. I am safe.
Probable cause: Stubborn ego and pride. Inability to bend. Fear. Inflexibility. Won't give in.
New thought pattern: Forgiveness. Understanding. Compassion. I bend and flow with ease, and all is well.
Probable cause: Fear of the future. Not wanting to move.
New thought pattern: I move forward with confidence and joy, knowing that all is well in my future.
Probable cause: Rejection of one's femininity. Guilt, fear. Belief that the genitals are sinful or dirty.
New thought pattern: I accept my full power as a woman and accept all my bodily processes as normal and natural. I love and approval of myself.
Probable cause: Frustration. Eating away at the self. Spite of a parent.
New thought pattern: It is safe for me to grow up. I now handle my own life with joy and with ease.
Probable cause: Represent point of creation. Creativity.
New thought pattern: I am balanced in my creative flow.
Probable cause: Guilt. Guilt always seeks punishment.
New thought pattern: I lovingly release the past. They are free and I am free. All is well in my heart now.
Probable cause: Irritation over delays.
New thought pattern: I love and approve of myself. I am at peace with the process of life.
Probable cause: Dread. Fear of the new. Inability to assimilate the new.
New thought pattern: Life agrees with me. I assimilate the new every moment of every day. All is well.
Probable cause: Long-standing indecisiveness. Inability to break down ideas for analysis and decisions.
New thought pattern: I make my decisions based on the principles of truth, and I rest securely knowing that only right action is taking place in my life.
Probable cause: Pissed off. Usually at the opposite sex or a lover. Blaming others.
New thought pattern: I release the pattern in my consciousness that created this condition. I am willing to change. I love and approve of myself.
Probable cause: Standing in a situation you hate. Discouragement. Feeling overworked and overburdened.
New thought problem: I stand in truth and live and move in joy. I love Life and circulate freely.
Probable cause: A need for mental rest.
New thought pattern: I give my mind a joyous vacation.
Probable cause: Denying your own needs. Not supporting yourself.
New thought pattern: I now choose to support myself in loving, joyous ways.
Of course there are tons and tons more in any of Louise Hay's books, apps and infomercial-style videos (what an ex called a sweet little movie of hers that I LIKED SO SHUT IT, BUDDY).
Oh -- also, a big thing of hers is the fact that the most positive act we can do for ourselves is to stop self-criticism and instead love and accept ourselves EXACTLY as we are right now, imperfections and all. I love these two statements as they are the core of acceptance of the now, being present and the ability to sit with yourself without distraction -- all activities that can be hard at times to do without getting freaked out.
Listen, as I said, see a doctor, don't ever expect any New Age shenanigans to be the answer to an actual problem, but in my experience, a positive energy state has made a huge, huge, huge, HUGE difference in my life. Placebo effect? Fine. I'll take it.
Do you relate to any of this style of "I love and accept my blah blah exactly as I blah blah blah"?
What do YOU think? Stupid? Dangerous? You dig it?
I will not be offended! You know why? Because I love and accept myself exactly as I am right now.
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