Incremental Affirmations

sun in handsOne of the biggest obstacles faced by people using affirmations is the conundrum of the big dream and the humble beginning.

You might say, “I have big dreams, but they are hard to believe right now. When I use an affirmation in support of those dreams my mind tells me my affirmation is impossible.”

That rejection of your big dream by your logical mind is called cognitive dissonance in psychological circles. Cognitive dissonance is your natural reaction when a thought or an idea does not match your perception of how the world operates.

You see this concept at play in the mother of an accused murderer. When that mother is interviewed she cannot reconcile her image of her baby boy with that of a murderer. Denial sets in and she rejects the accusation. Her mind searches for a more comfortable belief.

stepping stonesIn your every day goal/dream setting, you face a similar challenge.

Let’s say you are a technical writer for a manufacturing company. In your spare time, you are working on the great American novel. “One day,” you dream, “I want to be land on the New York Times Bestseller List.”  You can use an affirmation like:

“I am a New York Times Bestseller List author.”

I would call this an aspirational affirmation for the writer in question. Aspirational affirmations are effective, if you can overcome the cognitive dissonance. They are about embodying your dream long before you arrive – “fake it until you make it'”

However, many, if not most, people get hung up right there. Your logical mind quite rightly reminds you that you are not a best-selling author and your thinking takes a negative turn instead of the positive turn the affirmation was intended to provide.

Many people find this hard to overcome. Nothing causes more people to try and quit with affirmations than cognitive dissonance. It is a real challenge.

You could use a future tense affirmation such as:

“I will be a New York Times Bestseller List author.”

However, this violates another basic tenet of affirmations – that they are most powerful when phrased in the present tense. Putting an affirmation in future tense steals the power from it. The key to changing your thinking is to affirm that something is happening right now.

This solution is what I call incremental affirmations.

Incremental affirmations are the affirmations you use in the early stages of your journey towards your big dream. They simultaneously place the affirmation in the present tense, while scaling it to believability. The focus is on the same goal and there is an ever-important impetus on action happening now.

Incremental affirmations are created by using words like “on my way” or “in the process of becoming”. These phrases imply that I am taking all the necessary steps and doing all the necessary work to reach for my dream, while acknowledging that I am not yet there.

So, our friend the technical writer with the small book and the big dreams can succeed with an affirmation like:

“I am on my way to becoming a New York Times Bestselling author.”

Follow your bliss. Experience your bliss. Become your bliss.

Ray

Ray Davis is the founder of The Affirmation Spot and an advocate for the potential of the human race.  He’s the author of the breakthrough novel Anunnaki Awakening: Revelation – order your signed copy today at AATrilogy.com

anunnaki_cover_full_colorAnunnaki Awakening: Revelation is turning heads and opening minds. Humanity’s past is checkered, secret, and dangerous.

White House Correspondent Maria Love is on to the story of her life and with the help of an Anunnaki leaders seeks to unravel and reveal history’s biggest conspiracy. The Awakening has begun!

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About Ray Davis

Ray Davis is an author and co-founder of 6 Sense Media. His latest books are the Anunnaki Awakening trilogy - speculative fiction series focusing the issues of humanity's past and future. The series is heavily influenced by the science fiction genre. Book 1 - Revelation - is now available - http://www.AATrilogy.com. Ray has written prolifically on the topics of personal development and human potential. In 2007, Ray founded The Affirmation Spot - a website offering downloadable mp3 motivational tools and affirmations. http://www.theaffirmationspot.com. Ray began studying affirmations and positive thinking after a life-threatening illness at 25. His thirst for self-improvement led him to read the writings of Joseph Campbell, Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsch, and many other luminaries in the fields of mythology and motivation. Over time, he has melded these ideas into his own philosophy on self-development. He has written and used affirmations and other tools throughout that time to improve his own life and has a passion for helping other reach for their goals and dreams. In 2010 he authored an eBook titled The Power to Be You: 417 Original Daily Thoughts for Personal Empowerment. Ray holds a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Secondary Education in Social Studies from University of Kansas. He lives in Louisburg, KS with his wife, April, two grown stepkids, and his black lab, Mia.
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One Response to Incremental Affirmations

  1. Pingback: How to Write Affirmations – The Affirmation Spot for Monday August 29, 2011 « The Affirmation Spot

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