During my prenatal yoga classes, I encourage my students to choose a birth affirmation that they feel is speaking to them. By either drawing a random card from the deck or looking through and selecting card(s) that they feel is calling them.
Why do I love using affirmations?
Affirmations are powerful tools. Research says that affirmations can actually change our brain chemistry. Regular use of affirmations may help protect our brains from stress. When we experience stress, our body responds by producing the hormone cortisol. This hormone kicks in our fight or flight response. During prehistoric times, this was a very effective way of dealing with everyday dangers of living. However in our modern society, we no longer experience the same immediate dangers.
Affirmations can help to overcome a negative thought pattern, break a bad habit, help us achieve a goal, and overall create a more positive life.
What is an affirmation? What is a mantra?
Commonly confused for one another, affirmations and mantras may seem similar but are used for different purposes. Affirmations are a motivational phrase or sentence used to help you overcome a challenge, uplift or provide a positive outlook . A mantra is a group of words or sounds used with a spiritual intention. Mantras can be found across a spectrum of spiritual disciplines.
Tips for Using Affirmations
Affirmations can be used at anytime. To achieve the best results, I recommend incorporating several techniques to your daily practice until you feel that you affirmation has become a part of your life or you have received the desire change or result you are seeking.
- Repetition. Spend five to ten minutes each day repeating your affirmation to yourself. You can repeat your affirmation out loud or silently to yourself.
- Create a visual reminder. Post a visual reminder on any area that you see on a daily basis. Some of my favorite places include on the bathroom mirror, cellphone background screen, refrigerator door, desk/office space.
- Meditate. Meditate on the habit or quality that your are attempting to create. On your inhalations, repeat your affirmation. Exhale to release any qualities that are no longer serving you.
- Visualization. Find a quiet place. Sit or lie down comfortably. Close your eyes and imagine that state or quality you are attempting to create. Visualize your affirmation. This practice is good to couple with a meditation practice.
- Create a ritual. This doesn't have to be fancy or complicated. Choose the same location, time, and/or activity and repeat your affirmation.