This post is by Rob Leonardo, creator of Confidence Cues.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away, but only a dose of positive affirmations can keep your energy and confidence high throughout the day.
Remez Sasson of SuccessConsciousness defined affirmations as positive statements that describe a desired situation, repeated many times to influence the subconscious mind to do positive action.
However, more than simply saying these statements, one has to understand the underlying beliefs in each in order to say it with conviction.
Here are my top 10 affirmations that are vitamins to our self-confidence. The list is grouped according to benefits and includes indications when to use them.
Caution! Find time to stop and reflect on these words before you use them. Otherwise, it will not be effective.
Core Affirmation (Everyday)
1. I love myself.
Mahatma Gandhi, known for his self-sacrificing life to be of service to many of his Indian countrymen, said “They cannot take away our self-respect if we do not give it to them”. Self-love is self-respect.
Different philosophies and wisdom tell us that loving oneself is inappropriate. However, we have to take this in the right context. Selfishness is self-love for the purpose of acquiring the advantages without regard to the means and how it will affect the others.
Genuine self-love is taking care of oneself, putting importance to the nourishment of the whole person bodily and spiritually, in order to be of use to others.
2. I believe in myself.
Jessica Cox is the first woman pilot with no arms using only her feet to run a plane. Who said a human without arms can’t fly? If you want it, nothing is impossible!
What are you capable of doing? Think about this and be honest with yourself. Do not put limits to what you can do. Raise the bar. Say ‘I can do it’ before refusing to do it.
Success Pill (Everyday)
3. I am capable of achieving my goal!
“Begin with the end in mind” is the 2nd of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. Is this the right path you wanted yourself to be in? Be honest with yourself. In your real chosen path of career, aim high! Never let anything discourage you from doing something great.
That promotion you did not get is bad enough. Don’t get yourself sour-graping about the fact. Stand up and get your feet to work. Roll up your sleeves and show them what you’ve got. Start again and turn around your life into success. Go get it!
4. I am the star, it’s about time I shine.
In an American Idol episode, Ellen Degeneres told a contestant similar words. She said it was his chance to shine, remove all inhibitions, and show the audience the best he has.
Find your way to get noticed. Don’t play fake humility by being in the background. You need to shine and feed your ego with good feelings. And it’s also a way to boost your career.
For the Backbone (As needed)
5. It’s my life, it’s now or never.
Whether it’s Bon Jovi or the Glee cast singing, the song intended to encourage you to stop being afraid and start doing something about your life. More of the song: “I ain’t gonna be just a face in the crowd, you’re gonna hear my voice shouting out loud… It’s my life…”
No one is responsible for yourself but you. No one will suffer the consequences but you. Stop postponing doing things to achieve your dreams. Do what you have to do and carry on. You have to make things happen. Don’t blame others for your failures.
Energy Charger (Every morning)
6. I feel great.
In training, it is common that people are asked to make movements or dance with the music as an icebreaker. However, in some cases, it is also meant to bring out energy from the body and get into some state of excitement. Music is a powerful instrument that brings out emotions. There is energy in our body. We need to shake it out by making movements, listening to inspirational music (it can be of any genre that inspires you) or specific gestures like opening our arms outstretched.
Give yourself some boost in energy! Say this with gusto! This gives a kick in the ass kind of feeling. It’s similar to a coffee or an energy drink. It should stream down to your blood.
7. Today will be an awesome day!
You must have seen one of those shampoo or soap commercials where the character comes out from shower and starts the day refreshed. You have to get in that mood.
Declare what will happen each morning. Get yourself inspired. Shout it out, not on Facebook, but in your real voice with clenched fists up high.
8. It’s my show time!
Are you the life of the party? Typical psychological employment question. The Myer-Briggs Personality Classification identifies preferences or work styles and as such helps to understand a fit in the roles at work. Nobody forces anyone to change your personality to succeed. Understand what you are good at. And try to use that to your advantage.
Meanwhile, you cannot keep on being the dead man walking or the wallpaper at the party. Push yourself to make some noise and be visible. Just shake a leg and mix with the crowd. Find time to recover if you need so. Worst case scenario, play it like a theatre act. You may find a chance to enjoy it.
Stress Manager (As needed)
9. Don’t panic, everything will be okay.
The first thing that 911 representatives tell a caller in an emergency is that they will be there to help and assess possible giving of first aid to the victim. The first aid is most important and therefore it is important for the person giving it to be calm to be able to manage and save the victim.
When things do not go right or you sense some negative vibration, take a deep breath. Calm down and tell yourself to relax.
In your day-to-day challenges, there’s no way you can move on or even resolve some challenge if you are in a panic.
Sharpness of Mind (As needed)
10. Focus, focus!
In the manufacturing setting, engineers are trained to say “time-check” to remind people how much time is running and perhaps is lost when they get distracted by some issue.
This happens to us when we are bitten by depression or anger due to some acute ‘scene’ at work or some dumb request from clients. We are carried away by our emotions and lose our concentration. We have to remind ourselves to focus. Along with that, we need to ‘park’ a pending emotional issue by writing down the details and the tentative solution or action. Imagine yourself transferring that heavy load from your mind and heart to a piece of paper so you can clearly see what else is at hand. Then, you can move on.
A fellow Toastmaster and grand master of memory Nishant Kasibhatla shared with me how he keeps his self-confidence in tip-top shape: “I have created a set of affirmations that I read almost daily. These affirmations had a very positive impact on my self-confidence. The key is to keep reading these affirmations on a consistent basis.”