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No matter your education, income, social standing or any other metric you care to name, the simple fact is that life can be tough. Dealing with that reality can at times cause anxiety. Add in the fact that we’re just coming to grips with a once-in-a-lifetime (we hope) pandemic, and it’s no wonder that record numbers of people are reporting feeling anxious or depressed.
The good news is that there is a simple and effective way of dealing with anxiety. If you create affirmations and then use them daily, research shows they can be effective by countering feelings of stress and self-doubt. In essence, a personal affirmation is simply something that you say and repeat to yourself. Repetition is key, because it takes time to begin altering your thought patterns.
Writing for Healthline.com, Crystal Raypole says “As a type of positive self-talk, affirmations can you help you alter subconscious thoughts.” But there is a limit to what they can do. “Affirmations can help you create and reinforce new attitudes and behavior patterns,” Raypole continues, “but they can’t magically erase anxiety.” What they can do, she says, is:
- Improve your mood
- Boost self-esteem
- Increase motivation
- Help you solve problems
- Boost optimism
- Help you address negative thoughts
If you’d like to see if positive affirmations can affect your mood and behavior, keep the following in mind as you create some for yourself:
- Begin with “I” or “My”
- Keep them in the present tense
- Don’t be afraid to accept anxious thoughts
- Tie them to core values and successes
Once you have your affirmations written down on paper, a whiteboard or even your bathroom mirror, there are ways to make the process more effective. Specifically, make them part of a daily routine, keep them current and keep them where you can see them.
See the full Healthline article for a more in-depth discussion of positive affirmations.