Best Way to Write an Affirmation

Ever try to psych yourself up by thinking, “I’m going to walk in and ace that test!”

Even if you didn’t know it, you’re using a really powerful tool called an affirmation.

“An affirmation is a statement of purpose,” says Dr. Tian Dayton, the author of It’s My Life! A Workout for Your Mind and ten other books. It’s a way of talking to yourself in positive and encouraging ways. It can be taking something that’s tough and turning it into a positive statement.

Write an Affirmations Best Way to Write an Affirmation

For example, if you find it hard to speak in front of the class, instead of walking around telling yourself, “I’m so nervous, I can’t do it,” you turn it around: “I will communicate and share myself and my thoughts in class today.” If you’re shy, instead of thinking, “Nobody’s going to like me,” turn it around and say, “I will attract friends with whom I’ll have an authentic relationship.”

But most of us spend more time on the opposite, putting ourselves down: “I can’t do it.” “I’m going to make a fool of myself.” “I can’t be seen in public looking like this.” It’s more natural to put yourself down. So that’s why it’s important to make an effort to use affirmations—and because they can make a really powerful difference in your life.

Affirmations are cathartic; they let you get your feelings out. They’re a daily way of building your self-esteem. When you affirm yourself, you can be happier and enjoy life more. Affirmations also give you a chance to kick yourself in the butt. But it’s a gentle kick—more of a self-caring loving push. Affirmations can help you get through tough situations one day at a time.

Tian has a way of using affirmations that she has found works:

Write affirmations in a journal. Write about a page of affirmations. Write whatever comes to mind. And then finish up with one sentence at the end that you will carry around with you.

Start with “I” or “Today.” For example, “I am good enough as I am,” or “Today I will allow myself to feel comfortable in my own skin.” Write them in the first person.

Take whatever issue you’re working on and put it in a positive form. For example, if you’re having trouble accepting your body, affirm yourself with “Today I will appreciate and take care of my strong, healthy body God has given me.”

Focus on one theme. Give it a title. For example, if you’re writing an affirmation to enhance your self-esteem with lots of positive statements, you might call it “Feeling Good About Myself”

Write a page of affirmative journaling. More than a page tends to be overwhelming. For example, “Today I recognize I am in charge of my own life. Though I need to depend on people and reach out for help and guidance, ultimately it is up to me to make something of my life.”

Finish with one powerful sentence. Summarize with one powerful affirmation that sums up your theme, such as, “I will like the life I have to the best of my ability,” or “My life matters.”

Carry the final affirmation with you. Memorize it. Write it on sticky notes and put them in your notebooks, your bag. Put it on your mirror and say it to yourself while looking in the mirror.

Try to write at least one affirmation every day, or as often as you can. It’s like cleaning your room. When you don’t clean it for a while, it’s overwhelming. But when you pick up a little each day, you’re less overwhelmed, and living in a cleaner environment.

Tian offers an example of affirmations every one of us can use sometimes:

  •  Why should I be hard on myself?
  •  Who will benefit from me disliking myself?
  •  Each day I can find something about myself that makes me feel good.
  •  I will appreciate the day God gives me, rather than doing my best to find fault with it.
  •  I will work with the world today; I will let it be my friend.

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