Affirmations: Repetition and Belief Part I – The Affirmation Spot for Friday August 1, 2008

Everyone familiar with affirmations knows that repetition and belief are the two keys to success with them. The reason is that each addresses a separate part of the thought change process. Today, I am going to tackle repetition and I will discuss belief in my next article.

The reason for repetition with affirmations seems obvious. The more you think or speak or hear a thought, the more it sinks into your consciousness. That makes sense.

The repetition aspect of using affirmations is not targeted at your conscious mind. In fact, your conscious mind can be an obstacle to repeating affirmations often enough. After you use an affirmation a few times, your conscious mind is probably self-talking, “OK already, I get it. You can stop.”

Affirmation repetition is targeted to your subconscious mind. Your subconscious mind is harder to change than your conscious thoughts. It has a longer memory and clings to concepts more tenaciously. Your subconscious mind works by association. For most people, many of these associations developed in childhood when adult reasoning was not possible.

Whereas your conscious mind analyzes a tiger at the zoo – it’s beautiful, big, a cat, interesting; your subconscious mind tends to do immediate association tiger=scary. That’s why your conscious reaction to something is sometimes overridden by unconscious feelings, emotions, and thoughts that “rise from the depths.”

You cannot just affirm, “I am a smart person,” or “I am a great baseball player,” or “I am healthier every day,” ten times and expect it to really impact your subconscious. That is insufficient to counter long-held and often repeated opposing beliefs about these things.

While your conscious mind may be chiding you the 100th or the 1000th time you use an affirmation, it is just starting to sink into your subconscious. Repetition is the best way to allow subconscious absorption of new, simple ideas. That’s all affirmations are: simple, positive thoughts and ideas designed to replace limiting thoughts and ideas holding you back in life.

In education circles, they call it rote learning. Rote is the way you learned that 8 x 7 = 56. The first few times you did that problem you may have had to write tick marks on paper and count them or count on your fingers. Eventually, through repetition, you learned to immediately recognize 8 x 7 as 56 without thinking.

That’s the goal with affirmations. The difference is that you had no subsconscious notions that told you 8 x 7 was not 56. You accepted it as the truth and you incorporated it. With thoughts and ideas, you are battling against these notions. You’re subconscious might have learned at some point that 8 x 7 = 46 or worse that 8 x 7 absolutely under no circumstances equals 56.

These thoughts might be that, “When I try I always fail,” or “There is no way I can be a success. My parents weren’t successes. No one I know is a success.”

When you approach an opportunity for success these subconscious beliefs either hold you back or sabotage you somehow to reconfirm your belief in the old vision of you. That’s why changing those ideas is so important because that process works in reverse – in your favor – when your beliefs are affirming.

You cannot dislodge these ideas by saying or listening to an affirmation a few times. In fact, that’s why most people fail with affirmations. They stop using them thinking they are not working. You have to soak the ground with the new ideas so their seeds can germinate and grow.

“OK,” you’re thinking, “I get the concept, but if these thoughts are subconscious how can I know the affirmations are making a difference?”Great question. There are a couple of ways you’ll notice the change.

  • Perceptible improvement – you may notice some perceptible improvement in your perception or performance around the subject of the affirmation or affirmations.
  • Lightening mood – you may find your general mood lighten or that you feel better or more confident.
  • Negative self-talk overridden – best of all, you will start noticing your negative self-talk being interrupted and countered by the new positive thoughts on a conscious level. When the subconscious serves up, “You can’t do that,” your self-talk corrects, “Yes, I can.”

How long and how much repetition varies from person to person and situation to situation. Belief, which I will discuss in the next article, accounts for a lot the results we see from the repetition in the real world.

There are two ways for affirmations to access and change your subconscious ideas:

  1. Intentionally -the intentional approach involves consciously saying the affirmation, reading it, or listening to it with the goal of letting it soak in. The main disadvantage to this approach is the conscious mind’s negative self talk blocking full impact.
  2. Passively – passively absorbing affirmations is best accomplished by listening to them. By listening to them over and over while your conscious mind is doing something else, you bypass a lot of the negative self-talk that might deflate the effort.

After repetition, you’ll experience that same feeling you do when you have unconsciously learned the lyrics of a song or the words to a commercial. You’ll find your affirmation “appearing” in your mind and doing their work against against your limiting thoughts.

Stay inspired!

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

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Tearing Down is Not Building Up – The Affirmation Spot for Wednesday July 23, 2008

I’ve noticed a disturbing trend in blogs and information within the self-development community. In an effort to promote their own paths, some seem more than willing to tear down other self-improvement approaches.

It’s hard for me to imagine how tearing each other down builds anyone up or helps shift people or the world in the best directions.

Someone truly wanting to help people would admit that there are many approaches capable of helping people improve themselves, their life status, and their thinking. Each person should evaluate different options and determine what works best with his or her current situation.

 Recently, I’ve read blogs by practicioners of several self-help methodologies just raking affirmations up one side and down the other. The bloggers called them “delusional”, “wasteful”, and “dangerous”.  

I’ve seen stinging criticisms blaming affirmations for manifesting a state of denial. These strawman characterizations paint every user of affirmations as an 87-year old woman wanting to be an Olympic athlete or a depressed person trying to create a fictitious happiness. Obviously, anyone using affirmations to accomplish these things is being unrealistic an unwise.

Mostly, people who use affirmations are salespeople wanting to build their skills and confidence to make or exceed quota this month. Which salespeople do you suppose make quota? Those whose minds are filled with thoughts of “I can” or those whose minds are filled with “I can’t” or “I’m not sure if I can.”?

Athletes use affirmations to gain that razor thin margin of victory that having the mental edge can bring. Writers who face a blank page every day to earn a living use affirmations to keep them inspired through rejection letters and writers block. Dancers trying be mentally prepared for that big audition or looking to advance their careers use affirmations. 

People use affirmations to stay motivated to exercise, to stay focused on a big reward they are giving themselves for their hard work, or to remain committed to their diets. People use affirmations to counter the volumes of negative information that works its way into their brains every day from mainstream media.

And yes, depressed people, like I once was, use affirmations to pull themselves up out of the hole they find themselves in. It’s easy to criticize from the relative safety of a happy, prosperous life. However, when you’re really down and out all you have is the thought, the hope of a better day.

Are all these people delusional? Have they bought into some destructive ideology of happy thoughts that hold no meaning in reality? Hardly. 

I’ve said often in this blog that affirmations are just one tool in your self-development toolkit. Like any methodology they are extremely effective for some people and less so for others. There is no debate, though, that affirmations are very effective at doing one simple, but critical thing. Over time, they replace limiting, negative, and unproductive thoughts with empowering, positive, and productive thoughts.

I’m not sure why affirmations have become the favorite whipping boy for some supposed leaders in the self-development world. Maybe because so many people use them successfully. Maybe because they have a track record of success many other approaches aspire to. Hey, isn’t that kind of positive thinking delusional? :o)

What I do know for sure is that affirmations will keep motivating people to be their best (whatever that is for them at this moment) and aspire to more.  Those who want to tear affirmations down should really consider whether that serves their inferred goal of helping others. 

Stay inspired!

Ray

 

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Guaranteed Miracle – The Affirmation Spot for Monday July 21, 2008

Another Monday and for most of us the beginning of a new work week. Our lives are divided into these segments called weeks and it is a very efficient method to keep track of our schedules and the passage of time.                                                                                                                          

There is a tendency, however, for one week to run into the next and run into the one after that. The weeks start looking alike and we start to get that treadmill feeling. We take a lot for granted and we do a lot on auto pilot.

Yet, there are miracles everywhere, if only we choose to see them. Pay attention this week. I guarantee you that you will witness at least one miracle this week, if you’re watching. It might be big or small, but be it will be. It might happen to you, someone you know, someone you don’t; but happen it will.

What would it be worth to you on your journey back to you to differentiate this week by becoming fully aware of a real miracle? How would it inspire? How would it motivate? How would it change things? How would knowing that a tremendously positive turn of events is always possible?

“Miracles, ” wrote St. Augustine, “are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know of nature.”

So do you believe or do you defer? Are you ready to encounter a miracle this week and have it make all the difference in this fourth week of July 2008? 

Well, you already encountered one miracle today – YOU. What will the next miracle be?

 

Stay inspired!

Ray

 

 


www.theaffirmationspot.com offers downloadable mp3 affirmations for nearly every area of life – sports, sales, wealth and prosperity, health and fitness – to name just a few. Our library is growing all the time. Remember your fifth affirmation on each order is always free.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Dreaded WWOPT Disease Paralyzes – The Affirmation Spot for Friday July 18, 2008

 

We hear a lot about diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, and even hypothetical epidemics like bird flu. Because of their impact and ubiquity, these conditions deserve the attention they receive.

However, there is a condition that afflicts more people than all of these diseases combined.  In fact, it’s very likely you will be impacted by this condition, or its side effects, several times today. It can stop your life cold.

Symptoms include sweaty palms, a racing heart, self-consciousness, stress, headaches, and life paralysis. This condition affects poor and rich, famous and obscure, young and old. No one is immune.

It has prevented more great thoughts, limited more potential, destroyed more possibilities than anything on the planet. The condition is “What Will Other People Think (WWOPT)?”

Perhaps because our society is so enamored with popularity and status, many of us are deathly afraid to do anything that might be seen as being “out there”. We prefer to stay safely in the herd. Thinking the herd’s thoughts. Following the herd’s lead. Parroting the herd’s conventional (and usually disempowering) wisdom.

This is one of those instances of a positive attribute being turned against you. Humans are social creatures. Most of us have a strong need to be part of a group. These instincts help us cooperate and collaborate to get things done.

That attribute must be balanced, though, by empowered selfhood that can break from the group and create something unique and special – something all your own. That’s one of the main reasons you are here – to contribute your uniqueness to the universe.

When that process is short-circuited by WWOPT we become paralyzed in our lives.

  • “That dress is a little crazy and I like it, but WWOPT?”
  • “I don’t agree with the politcal mainstream, but I can’t express it because WWOPT?”
  • “I want to wear a bathing suit at the beach, but my body’s not perfect and WWOPT?”
  • “I want to be a romance author, but WWOPT?”
  • “I’m not happy in my spiritual life, but I can’t change because WWOPT?”
  • “My wife and I want to sell our possessions, buy a mobile home, and travel America, but WWOPT?”

The mass media uses this instinct against you to create a kind of subconscious servitude to what’s trendy, acceptable, and popular. It really is a form of not-so-subtle mind control. It establishes boudaries of what is acceptable and what is not (at least in your mind). It’s very powerful and gets more so every time you fail to establish a powerful selfhood as a counterbalance.

It seems OK because almost everyone you know is also stuck in WWOPT. We often provide negative encouragement by using WWOPT to convince our friends to stay where they are (where we are) – comfortable and uninspired.

Here’s what you can do to treat WWOPT. Sometime today – I can almost guarantee it – you’re going to have a thought or an idea that brings you momentary satisfaction at the thought of pursuing it.

If you’re afflicted with WWOPT, your self-talk is going to shoot down your idea. It’s going to tell you all the reasons that would never work and it’s going to employ WWOPT as its closing argument in squashing your dream. Or, maybe the idea survives your self-talk long enough to be shared with a friend who dismisses it as “crazy talk”.

You could feel stupid for even thinking such a thing. You know the drill because you’ve done it a hundred, a thousand times before. You chastise yourself. You feel your happiness drain away as your dream dies…the victim of WWOPT.

Or instead, as soon as this happens, and every time it does from now on, you can choose a different path. You can shout (not literally unless you want to because you’re no longer worried by WWOPT), “I have a right to be me and to think for myself! I am choosing to pursue my dreams!” Say it to yourself two or three times, if that’s what it takes.

Put your internal and external naysayers on notice that you are not going to be stopped by WWOPT anymore. Once you break through that fearful barrier, you will see it was nothing but smoke and mirrors.

You’re going to explore what it means to be you, to think like you, and to act like you. That’s what you’re here to do, my friend. Success comes not to those who wait with the herd, but to those who step out on their own and create something different.

Oddly enough, the herd really loves to follow someone like that. :o)

Stay inspired!

Ray


www.theaffirmationspot.com offers downloadable mp3 affirmations for nearly every area of life – sports, sales, wealth and prosperity, health and fitness – to name just a few. Our library is growing all the time. Remember your fifth affirmation on each order is always free.


Your Unique Contribution – The Affirmation Spot for Monday May 19, 2008

Thank you for visiting The Affirmation Spot. Your comments on the blog or this article are always welcome. What do you think? Please click here to comment on today’s blog.




ray_launchpad.jpgYour Fifth Affirmation is Always Free at The Affirmation Spot

Whenever you download four affirmations at The Affirmation Spot your fifth affirmation is free. Simply type five in the coupon field at checkout to get your fifth affirmation free. (Offer valid only on a per order basis. Multiple single downloads do not receive this discount.)

Today’s featured affirmation is:

“My golf swing is smooth, pure, and consistent.” (repeats 6 times)

“Your golf swing is smooth, pure, and consistent.” (repeats 6 times)

Hear an audio mp3 version of this affirmation right now.


Everything that happens, regardless of the immediate suffering or joy it creates, perfectly prepares you to fulfill your purpose and achieve your goals. Focus, therefore, always on your experience and the lessons it has to teach you.

For just as the sun knows when to rise and the rose knows when to bloom, so too will you know when it is your moment to step forward and shine. It will be obvious that circumstances call for the special gifts and personal abilities that are uniquely yours.

Remember no matter where life has led you or how much pain you have endured, you still have something wonderful within that you, and only you, can contribute to the universe. Never let anyone tell you that your contribution is umimportant.

I’d dare say that your contribution is so important that the natural unfolding of the universe is undermined when you or anyone else fails to make their contribution. Live as if you dwell in a blessed state of grace because you do. Act as if you are endowed with enormous power to make a difference because you are.

Each day is one small deposit in your larger contribution to all of existence. Do yourself and the rest of us a huge favor and don’t forget to make it.

Stay positive stay inspired!

Ray

Hawaii Part II: Your Personal Road to Hana – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday May 6, 2008

Thank you for visiting The Affirmation Spot. Your comments on the blog or this article are always welcome. What do you think? Please click here to comment on today’s blog.




ray_launchpad.jpgYour Fifth Affirmation is Always Free at The Affirmation Spot

Whenever you download four affirmations at The Affirmation Spot your fifth affirmation is free. Simply type five in the coupon field at checkout to get your fifth affirmation free. (Offer valid only on a per order basis. Multiple single downloads do not receive this discount.)

Today’s featured affirmation is:

“I am a visionary. I see and respond to trends well ahead of the pack.” (repeats 3 times)

“You are a visionary. You see and respond to trends well ahead of the pack.” (repeats 3 times)

Hear an audio mp3 version of this affirmation right now.


Good morning! My apologies for the sporadic posts of late. We returned from Hawaii to a lot of work and then I got blasted with some bronchitus. I’m human like everyone else.

Today is part two of our Hawaii trip and, of course, it would not be The Affirmation Spot if I failed to tie it to something in our lives.

We left our intrepid voyagers sailing from Hilo to Maui on Day 3 of their trip. We awoke to see the beautiful Western Maui mountains from our balcony as we cruised into Kahului, Maui.

The harbor in Kahului is a working harbor. Normally, you find ships and barges being unloaded by giant cranes and lines of trucks ready to supply island’s ever-growing need for supplies.

It’s also not unusual, morning or night, to see some of the local canoe racing clubs practicing on the course laid out in harbor.

Our Day 1 Maui excursion was the Road to Hana. Hana is a small, remote town on Maui’s southeast coast. The area was one of the last on the island to be modernized. There was no paved road to the area until 1926. The town is situated between a giant rainforest and the coast. It is also the heart of Maui’s cattle industry and you can see the odd sight of cattle grazing right next to white sandy beaches.

For those of you who have never been, “The Road to Hana” spans 52 miles from the port and features, 617 curves, 56 one-lane bridges, many more two-lane hairpin turns around jagged rock, and sheer drops that reveal some of the most unspoiled coastline in the islands.

There are places along the Hana Road that are just too beautiful not to stop. April snapped these photos during our stop at Honomanu Bay.

   

There was lush rainforest foliage and majestic jungle waterfalls. The African Tulip Trees were in full bloom.

   

 What begins as a 52-mile drive turns into quite a journey and experience. Because of the mountain roads, it takes about 3 hours to get to Hana (and that was on a nice day). The road, the awesome beauty, the changes from jungle, to jagged coastline, to farmland remind me of our lives.

We start with the best of intentions on a straight line towards our goals in life. Along the way, life has its twists and turns like The Road to Hana. We have to adjust and deal with the curves and not let them distract or deter us from our goals.


 As we gain wisdom, we come to understand that the unexpected detours are often what adds the value and the meaning to our experience of life. Without them, our lives would be mundane and boring even if they might be easier.

In the end, if we ride the curves and stand by our dreams we are rewarded for the effort. On the Road to Hana that reward comes at the magnificent Halekala National Park. The O’heo (Seven Sacred) pools and an awe-inspiring view of the untamed Pacific are the reward on this journey.

   

 Here nature fills your senses demanding that you take stock and reflect on your journey. The sound of the wild Pacific pounding against the Maui coast drowns confusion and doubt. It washes away care and concern and leaves you feeling at one with all you see. This is definitely worth the journey!

This is the feeling we experience when we achieve our goals and dreams too. All the hardship we experienced along the road is graciously welcomed as experience. All the naysayers and negatives vanish like the ghosts they always were. We are left in awe that we could be so blessed.

Maybe today you are only on curve 201 of 614 on the way to your dream. That’s Ok. Maybe one of the beautiful sights along the way has momentarily distracted you. Don’t sweat it. If your dreams have meaning, you will continue on the road. You will get back on track and you will finish your personal Road to Hana.

I know you can do it! Those who turn back never see the dreams. Those who continue the journey one day at a time will find their reward.

Stay inspired!

Ray

 

 

 

 

Articulating Your Goals and Dreams – The Affirmation Spot for Monday April 14, 2008

Today’s Affirmation:

My dreams are the fuel that powers my life. Today I choose to follow them.


Can you articulate your goals and dreams? Are you making your goals and dreams concrete enough to bring them to fruition? Are you putting your intention for their realization out into the universe? This week we are going to look at some ways to bring your goals and dreams closer to reality.

Articulating Your Goals and Dreams

Words have such power. Most spiritual traditions around the world talk about God or the gods speaking the world into being.

From the beginning, words have been the source of creation. They are the first step in manifesting thoughts in our head out in the world. They are also the bridge between thoughts/ideas and actions.

It’s nearly impossible for your goals and dreams to become a reality, if you are unable to articulate them. The ability to clearly articulate your goals and dreams is the first step in clearly envisioning them.

You often hear successful people talk about their mission statements. These statements are nothing more than a formalized articulation of who they are as a person and an affirmation of their dreams and goals.

Articulating your goals or dreams need not be that formal. It can be as simple as a phrase that succinctly describes your goal. To begin, use some simple questions to get your thought process going.

“What is your dream?”
“What do you want to be doing in five years?”
“If you could be doing anything with your life what would it be?”

You’re not worried about “the how” at this point, only “the what”. “The how” takes care of itself once you clearly envision “the what”.

Here’s a simple 7-step process to begin articulating your dreams and goals.

  1. Ask yourself the preceding questions or similar questions you devise.
  2. Brainstorm answers by writing down everything that comes to your mind when you ask these questions. Listen carefully to really capture your true heart’s desires.
  3. When you’re happy with your list prioritize your answers.
  4. Select 1-3 key goals or dreams (that’s all most people can really focus on at any given time). These are the ones that really speak to you right now. Keep the rest for future use.
  5. Write a brief statement describing the goal or dream and your desire to achieve it. Add a timeframe to your statement. Spice it up with extra detail to motivate action.
  6. Memorize your statement.
  7. Articulate the statement regularly – out loud and to yourself. When someone asks you what you want to be doing answer with your statement. Use the statement as an affirmation for yourself. Share it with friends, relatives, and colleagues.

Following are a few examples to get you started:

Instead of saying:

“I want to be a published author.”

Say something like:

“In five years, I want to be sitting on a beach writing novels full time.”

Instead of saying:

“I want to be a football coach.”

Say something like:

“In five years, I want to be a successful college football coach at a divsion I school.”

Instead of saying:

“I want to a better mom.”

Say something like:

“In the next six months, I want to create more time with my kids and devise ways to be more engaged in their learning.”

The next post will discuss putting your intention for achieving your goal out into the universe.

Be peaceful Be positive Be prosperous!

Ray