Affirmation of the Week
Introduction to Affirmations
The Engine of Growth
What Affirmations Do
Why Affirmations Work
Affirmations as Power
Discovering What to Say
Creating Your Own Practice
Creating an Affirmation Journal
My Journey with Affirmations
Advanced Techniques
Guidelines for Affirmations
An Invitation
Weekly Affirmation Archive
Resources and Links
Creating an Affirmation Journal

The most effective affirmations come from you.

The most effective affirmations come from you; using your negative thoughts and feelings as a way to create the wording for your own affirmations. Noticing those thoughts, listening to your inner dialog with yourself, how you react to events in your life and how those events make you feel are important clues in the process of creating an effective affirmation practice.

Noticing when someone makes you feel bad is the first step. You know when you feel bad, you don't need anyone to tell you that. Something happens, someone says or does something that annoys you, frustrates you, gets you angry or hurts you. You react. Maybe you notice as it's happening, maybe you notice later. Maybe much later even; a few days pass and you realize that you've been upset about what happened.

Sit down with your journal and start writing. First write down what happened. Describe it. Then try to identify exactly what you felt or are still feeling, what ever the emotion is. If you get upset as you are writing, that's okay. Keep writing. What ever you feel, feel it. You're probably blaming the other person for something they did or didn't do that you felt they should have. Write that down. Keep writing until you end up with statements like "I am angry that he ignored me."

Next, let go of your feelings for a moment. Detach. You can always go back to them if you want, but for now, be an observer. This can be challenging, because when you are feeling your feelings, your focus can be directed outward. Usually it's something like "Look what THEY did, how could THEY do that to me!" Step back for a moment. You can still blame them if you want, but instead of focusing on the person or event that upset you, focus on yourself. Or maybe you're not focusing outward, you're looking inward and blaming yourself for what happened. Again, be the observer for a moment.

In either case, without blaming yourself, ask the question "What is it about me that makes me react in that way?" Or put another way, "What has happened in my life that would make me sensitive to people acting in this way towards me?" Specifically with the example above, "What is it about me that I get angry when someone ignores me?" How do you feel? Has this happened before and if so, when? Does it seem to happen often to you? Think back. Perhaps back to your teenage years, perhaps back to your childhood. Perhaps something to do with your parents. Is there a pattern of this happening in your life? Explore this.

Why are you feeling what you are feeling? That's the question. To answer that, ask yourself how would you feel if the person had reacted the way you wanted?. Happy? Proud? Great? Powerful? In charge? Write that as a statement as well; "When he pays attention to me I feel in charge."

Ask the question "What is it about me that makes me need to feel this way?" or "Why do I want people to react in this way?" Again, this may go back to teenage or childhood years. Try to remember what happened, what was said, what was done to you that created this need, as in the example above, the need to be in charge. Perhaps you parents ignored your feelings and made you do things in spite of your feelings. You felt bad. You felt out of control. That too is important. Make that into a statement and write it down. The statement then is:

"When my parents ignored my feelings, I felt out of control."

These are all feelings. They are not you.

Next breath. These are all feelings. They are not you. It is easy to be judgmental of yourself. Be kind to yourself. Knowing where the feelings started from can be an emotional release in and of itself. What you have found is information about yourself and how to use this information to create effective affirmations.

Enough digging then. Now you have two statements:

"When someone ignores me I feel angry."
"When someone pays attention to me I feel in charge."

You also have the statement of how it started:

"When my parents ignored my feelings, I felt out of control."

You have the information you need. You know what's triggering the reaction in you, you know why and where it comes from. Continuing with this example, your parents, through their actions, gave you the same message over and over again that your feelings weren't important, and that you weren't in charge. They did that hundreds of times. You felt and internalized it and consciously or unconsciously reinforced that message over and over again. So in order to remove that negative message, you'll have to say the affirmations you create many times, more times than the negative message was said to you.

Now it's time to address these feelings and reactions and change them.

The first and most important aspect is that with most reactions, the above example included, there is a need. The need can be summed up in the statement "I want you to act in a certain way so that you validate me the way I want!"

This need puts you at a distinct disadvantage for many reasons. The most obvious is that if you depend on someone else for validation then they have the ability, either intentionally or unintentionally, to decide if you will feel good or bad. They become responsible for your happiness. Now if the person you depend on is blissful saint, that's less of a problem. If the person is manic-depressive, it's a problem. Most people fall somewhere in between, so becoming unattached to other people's reactions can free you from the negative feelings connected to their reactions. Besides, most people don't want to be responsible for your happiness, they have enough problems of their own without having to deal with yours as well.

The first step then is recognizing that you and you alone are responsible for creating what ever feeling you want and satisfying the need for that feeling. If, for example, you discovered you have a deeply held feeling that you don't have control in your life, the affirmations are:

This is the answer to the question, "Why does this always happen to me?"

"I alone am responsible for my feeling in control of my life"
"I feel in control of my life."

Make yourself responsible for taking care of what ever feeling you are lacking and tell yourself you feel that way. With those two affirmations, you stop looking to others to satisfy that need, and you satisfy it yourself.

Taking responsibility in this way is important as it relates to the idea that we draw towards us, and are drawn to, people that are similar energetically. I can't stress this point too much. This is the answer to the question, "Why does this always happen to me?" By making yourself responsible for your own feelings, you remove the need to have those feelings validated by someone else; you stop projecting the need out to people; people that would be drawn to you because they have the need to be validated in the same way no longer get their need satisfied with you.

Using the example above, internally you stop expecting other people to satisfy your need to feel in control. Externally you stop projecting that need, and people who have control issues of their own no longer get satisfied with you because you don't need them to validate that need. You free yourself from people that want to consciously or unconsciously manipulate a particular need in you.

Okay, you've created the affirmation to take responsibility for your own feelings. However you still have the current situation creating the reaction in you, in this example with the person or persons that ignore you. This current situation is representative of a habit you've created of reacting with anger because someone didn't act the way you wanted. Time to break that habit. Take the exact opposite of the statement above, thus:

"When someone ignores me I feel angry."


"When someone ignores me I feel calm."

After using this affirmation, being ignored will no longer anger you. Why? Because you change your response to being ignored from anger to calm.

With the statement, "When someone pays attention to me I feel in charge" the process of arriving at affirmation is a little more complex.

Really what you want is to create the feeling for yourself regardless of how the other person acts. You want to feel in charge even when someone ignores you.

The intermediary affirmation is:

"Even when someone ignores me, I feel in charge."


"When someone ignores me I respond by feeling in charge"

Both can work as affirmations, and both are conditional. A better version simply removes that element. Thus:

"When someone ignores me, I feel in charge."

Now that seems silly and totally against sensible reasoning. How could anyone react that way? If you can't relate to this example, go through this process with something personal to you. When you arrive at your version of this affirmation it will just feel wacky or "out of sync with reality". This feeling of paradox just means you found the right phrasing for your affirmation. The mind set it affirms is that what you feel is not dependent on another person to validate you even when they act in a way you don't like.

I have found the "When someone (does something)..... I feel (some feeling)" syntax very useful, because it addresses three important aspects of reactions. First and foremost, it address the trigger for your reaction, in this case someone ignoring you. Second it creates an awareness in you of when the trigger is happening, in this case when someone begins to ignore you; it keeps you from getting caught up in the emotions of your old reaction. Third it tells you what to do, in this case, to stay calm; it points you in the direction of the new reaction you wish to create. Those three elements help break your habit of your old reaction and replace it with your new healthy one.

The remaining thing to address is the source of all these feelings and reactions; what started it all. Time to heal that as well. In our example, it was your parents. Now our perceptions as children can be very tricky. What we see one way may have in fact been something completely different. That doesn't take away from how we felt as children at all. What we felt is what we felt. We were kids, we can't help it. But again, reality may have been very different.

Or it may not have. Your parents may have been truly terrible. In either case, it doesn't matter. Time to heal this wound.

Using our example, take the statement about your parents:

"When my parents ignored my feelings, I felt out of control."

Identify all the feelings in it, and make them into separate statements about what your parents did. Thus:

"My parents ignored my feelings"
"My parents didn't let me be in control"

Now state the exact opposite. Affirm the positive.

"My parents cared about my feelings"
"I had control with my parents"

Or better yet, put it in the present tense

"My parents care about my feelings"
"I have control with my parents"

These two statements will feel the most foreign, the weirdest of all. Say them anyway. Even if you know they are absolutely not true, saying them will release the negative feelings you hold because of your parents' actions towards you. Perhaps you are rewriting history. More than likely you are rewriting your perception of history. That is where the healing comes. Either way, hanging on to the hurt from their actions doesn't serve you. Making an affirmation of what you really wanted from them heals this wound.

Now the final step. The negative thoughts, feelings, beliefs or reactions you will change are currently part of your subconscious. Like a seed that was planted many years ago, the roots have grown down deep into the soil. What you see in your conscious mind is the plant above the surface, but it's the roots that need to be dug up. What fed the plant was the reinforcement of the original thought, feeling, belief or action though repetition. In other words, you practiced thinking, feeling, believing or acting in a certain way, enabling it to become automatic.

So how do you change? How do you uproot your old thought, feeling, belief or reaction and replace it with a healthy one? In the same way the old one got there. Practice! You practiced the old way unknowingly, but you can quickly and powerfully change by practicing the new way with intent and purpose. Set aside a time each day to say the affirmations you've created. Close your eyes, imagine seeing yourself happy, and say one affirmation out loud, repeating it for a few minutes. Then go on to the next one. Focusing on four or five affirmations, saying each one three to five minutes, will take about twenty minutes and is a good way to begin the process of change.

You may discover other affirmations with slightly different wordings and perspectives from your original affirmations come to mind as you practice. Using the example above, perhaps you remember that a parent always said "I'm the boss," so saying "My parents let me be the boss," has a greater emotional impact for you than "I have control with my parents." Add these new affirmations to your practice as well.

One final word concerning your parents. Parents impact their children's lives in the most profound way possible and after reading about the process above, you may think "Well it was my parents that made me feel this way, how can I ever hope to change what they did to me?" You believe you don't have the power or ability to change the impact your parents had on you. Remember, they "trained" you to feel a certain way. They planted the seed and made it grow. They helped you "practice" feeling or reacting a certain way. They gave you a message, verbally or non verbally, and reinforced that message over and over.

Perhaps the way they made you feel no longer serves you. Well then it's time to practice feeling a different way. It's time to uproot the old feeling and plant a new one. Time to train yourself to think, feel and react differently. The advantage you have is that you can "practice" as much as is needed; you can give yourself more "training" then they did. If they told you "you have no control," a hundred times, then you tell yourself "I feel in control" two hundred or a thousand times. However many times as it takes to change how you feel. You are the only person inside your head, and you can say an affirmation as much as is needed, more than any message anyone has ever said to you, to create a change in yourself.

With this one example, I have given you a template, through the use of a journal, for creating affirmations to deal with your feelings and reactions to people and events. As shown in the example above, I believe it is our internal feelings that affect not only our own reactions, but how people react to us based on those beliefs. Changing your feelings about yourself in even one area can bring a huge change in your perception of the outside world. This is the process I use. I hope you find it useful as well and encourage you to try it for yourself.

copyright 2004 affirming love