You’ve heard or read that positive affirmations can change your life. People have been talking about them for decades and anecdotal evidence seems to back up the claim: If you spend a few minutes each day declaring what you want as though it had already happened, your reality will change to match that declaration. And so, you spent every morning, perhaps for weeks, standing in front of the mirror chanting “I’m rich. I’m rich. I’m rich”, only to check your bank account and see that it had miraculously, um, declined. If you’re one of the people for whom affirmations haven’t worked thus far, this post is for you.
An Affirmation is a declaration that something is true. In that way, it’s correct that when you affirm something with the goal of actually making it happen, you have to state it as though it has already happened. “I’m rich”, instead of “I want to be rich.” But just using the right grammatical structure isn’t enough. Let’s look at what affirmations actually are and why they work (or not).
The process of creating and receiving has nothing to do with the words that you speak and everything to do with the vibration you offer. Your vibration is a result of your thoughts and beliefs. Whatever you focus on, comes into your physical reality, providing you focus on it enough. When you want to receive something into the physical that you don’t currently have, you must find the vibration of that thing – its frequency – and match it.
1. Use your emotions to guide you
The Law of Attraction doesn’t respond to your words, it responds to your vibration. If you match the frequency of whatever you’re trying to create, it will manifest. How do you know what frequency you’re matching? You can tell by the way you feel. I’ve written extensively about emotions, so won’t repeat all of that here. You can read the articles about emotions and/or download the free e-book to get the full story. In a nutshell, your emotions are a kind of vibrational feedback system, that tell you if your thoughts are serving you or not. You can use this guidance system to help you find the exact frequency of what it is you’re trying to create. You can match the frequency of your desire, by finding the feeling you would have if you already had it.
Let’s say you’re poor as a church mouse and you want to be rich. You can find the frequency of being rich, by figuring out what you would feel like if you were rich. For example, getting a bill in the mail wouldn’t bother you at all. Shopping trips would be adventures of possibility, not disappointing journeys. You’d think “I could get that. Do I want to?” instead of “I want that, but I can’t afford it.” Looking at a luxury car, you’d think “I like the leather seats, but I’d choose different rims” all while knowing that you could easily buy it, instead of feeling jealous of the current owner. Every financial transaction and interaction would feel different, and by finding that feeling, you can shift your energy.
So, just saying the words of an affirmation isn’t enough. You have to find the feeling place of what it is you’re looking for.
2. Don’t go for Quantum Leaps
Don’t try to shift too far from where you are. Energetically speaking, if you try to shift your energy too great a distance in one go, you either won’t make it or you won’t be able to hold on to it, both leading to the same result: Your affirmations will fail.
Let’s say you’re currently a size 16 and you want to be a size 8. Can you really find the feeling place of being a size 8? There’s a huge difference between those two states of being, and chances are, it’s going to be hard for you to imagine what it feels like to be that much thinner. But you can probably find the feeling place of a size 14 fairly easily.
Here’s the thing: You don’t have to start by affirming your end goal. You can change your affirmations as you go along. Your affirmations will only work, if you have the ability to believe them. If you’re affirming “I’m a size 8” while a size 16 is staring back at you in the mirror, there’s a big part of you that’s probably screaming “I’m not a size 8!! And I never will be!!” It’s hard for you believe. But again, a small, incremental change is easier for you to wrap your brain around. The trick is to find affirmations that are close to what you believe now, but are just a tad outside your comfort zone – they represent a small change in the right direction. So, if your current belief is “I will always be poor”, the first affirmation you’ll want to go with is “I could possibly be rich one day”, instead of “I’m rich.” Then, when that feels completely true, you can move to the next step – “There are lots of ways in which I could become rich, even if I don’t know what they are yet”, for example. Take baby steps instead of quantum leaps and you’ll get there.
3. Spend enough time on your affirmations
The dominant vibration always creates your reality. No exceptions. What does that mean? If you hold a belief that you’re fat (or some other belief that leads to that result), and you spend 2 hours a day focusing on that, you’d have to spend MORE than 2 hours a day focusing on the opposite: “I’m thin”, in order to create any change.
This isn’t as hard as you think. While you may spend a great deal of time hating your body and focusing on your size, it’s usually only for a few seconds at a time. So, focusing on the opposite vibration for a concentrated period of time, say 10 minutes a day, can bring about massive change. It takes a lot of stray thoughts to equal 10 minutes… The point is that the amount of time you have to spend on each affirmation is directly related to how much focus you give to the belief that’s causing the unwanted situation. A small issue could be shifted by focusing for a few seconds just once, while larger issues may take several minutes each day for weeks. Focus enough energy on the belief you want to hold, however, and your reality must change. That’s why they call it a law.
Affirmations can and do work, provided we do them correctly. Now that you’re armed with the information of how they actually bring about change, you’ll hopefully find the success with them that you were looking for (providing you hadn’t already). I know you can do it! I know you can do it! I know you can do it! 🙂
Have you had an experience (good or bad) with affirmations? Don’t forget to share your thoughts in the comments and let everyone benefit.
This explanation really helps.. I am learning so much more about LOA..
Thanks Deb! I’m so glad this post was helpful to you. 🙂
This post changed my whole view about affirmations. Through many established sources, I adopted the belief that affirmations have little power and they don’t work. I even bought affirmation audio CDs & they had little effect on me. Now I know why. Firstly, having the belief that they didn’t work did not help. Secondly, these affirmations had little effect because I did not create them & therefore, they did not really resonate with me. Now, I have my own audio I recorded with my own affirmations & I see that they certainly do work. Huge difference!
Not only have I seen changes from stating & feeling beliefs. I also noticed that writing out an affirmation & making it feel really good basically tells my mind this is a default thought I should think so when I do think of a particular subject, the affirmations for that subject seem to naturally seep in 🙂
Thanks so much Mike! I’m glad this post was helpful to you.
Affirmations can be incredibly powerful when they actually shift your vibration to a higher and better feeling place. And that’s a very individual thing. If you want to use standard affirmations from somewhere else, make sure that they’re really general. Then they’ll have the best chance of working. But since it’s not hard to create your own, I really always recommend that. 🙂
Just going through your amazing previously written articles. I really like this one along with the other ones. But, I particularly like how you mentioned the term “dominant vibration” One of the fascinating things, I’ve discovered and it ties into your question at the end, was that I can change my dominant vibration and actually make that my default personality. It does take inner work, and use of affirmations and powerful creative visualization daily does help a lot, but imagine having what you truly want out of life, and being a living breathing example of that because that already IS your default personality, thus all the good, prosperity, and happiness is attracted to you daily? Pretty fascinating is you ask me. =)
It’s awesome isn’t it? I think that the ultimate goal. To be who we truly are. To drop all the fears and the self-imposed limitations and let the light of who we really are shine through. Like you said, it does take some work, but it’s so worth it. The moments in which I hit it, in which I get fully aligned, feel so spectacular. There’s just no going back… 🙂
I love the idea of affirming in small steps. In the past, I’ve felt as though I was negating my ultimate goal if I focused on smaller ones or I would feel like I wasn’t dreaming big enough. But this puts it into perspective…what good is it to affirm the bigger goals if you can’t match up to them to allow it to manifest. This gives people the freedom to be where they are without feeling like a failure and abandoning affirmations all together if they can’t dream big. I love how you stated “I could possibly be rich one day.” Once they harness and BELIEVE that, they can continue to grow from there.
Thanks for the insight!
You’re so welcome Kim! I’m really glad you enjoyed the post.
Affirmations are great! They are a wonderful way to change our thinking. I like your point to go in increments. I also like using afformations for major changes, turning the affirmations into questions. They really help the mind to start formulating plans for change. An afformation would be: “Why am I 20lbs lighter?”
Wow Stacy. That’s a fantastic idea! I’m so going to start using the question format as well. Thanks for sharing this!
If you’re really interested in learning more about this you can look into the book called The Secret Code of Success by Noah St. John. It’s actually the next book on my list to buy!
I would like to add a point to this list.
All the affirmations in the world won’t get you anywhere if you don’t take action on the ideas you get, on the dreams you have.
You need to constantly take action towards your goals if you are to complete them. It takes work, hard work to accomplish your goals. Affirmations can give you the confidence, motivation and focus to start, but you need to act on it to succeed.
Great Point Daniel! I would only change one little thing: take *inspired* action. 🙂
Thanks for the comment!
What a coincidence, I was thinking about matching energy vibrations on the way to work tonight. I already knew about getting into those feelings of already having your desire, but I was trying to take it a step further. I was trying to understand how we as humans vibrate down to the molecular level and how we could possibly control those vibrations to match another frequency. If I ever figure it out I’ll be sure to let everyone know.
Please do! I’d love to hear what you come up with. Thanks for the comment.
This is really a wonderful look at affirmations, and in making them work in our lives.
I love this idea of creating affirmations that are incremental steps toward where we desire to be. Those small steps really are easier…and still keep you moving in the direction you want to be.
Thanks for sharing – I’m going to play around with this a bit!
Thanks for stopping by Lance! Taking small steps makes it easier to achieve any goal. It’s the same as if you try to lift 300 pounds when you haven’t been working out. You have to work your way up to it. I see energy work the same way.
Would love to hear how you make out! 🙂