Top 6 Affirmations to Tell Yourself
What does it mean to be mentally kind to yourself? We tend to be overly critical of ourselves and underappreciative of the many good qualities we possess. This habitual way of thinking has caused many people to develop negative mental health, and behavioral disorders. Engaging in behaviors that are mentally kind is fundamental to helping improve mental health and improve mood.
Every person’s journey is different, but there is something that can be beneficial to everyone and is a simple place to start. Affirmations are positive mental phrases that are designed to help promote self-belief, self-confidence, and self-love. These statements should reflect a positive attitude about a specific attribute that the individual can easily recognize.
By using affirmations on a regular basis, you can help retrain your brain to adopt certain attitudes and thoughts that can help you to overcome personal challenges. So what are some affirmations that you can use to help generate positive thinking, improve mental health, and balance mood?
I am capable.
Self-criticism is one of the biggest contributes to negative mental health. We constantly scrutinize ourselves for not being good at something, for not possessing a certain skill that others may possess. While criticism can be constructive, fixating on it can be damaging to an individual’s sense of confidence and overall self-image.
So instead of criticizing yourself for the things you think you can’t do, highlight the things you can do. The “I am capable,” affirmation should be made specific to you. It should emphasize something that you take pride in or something that gives you joy. Let’s look at an example.
"I am capable of continuing to further my career because I am hard-working, good at communicating with my team, and great at creating plans."
See how one statement can encompass so many positive things at once?
I am beautiful.
Negative body image is becoming even more common among women of all ages. This is cause for great concern, more and more women are suffering from eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia as a result of this rise in negative body image. Women over 40 tend not to be featured in media the same way that younger women are, and it can have a serious impact on how women see themselves in the eyes of others, especially their partners.
Instead of feeding into the immensely negative rhetoric of “ideal beauty” focus on what is naturally beautiful in yourself. It may be your smile, your eyes, your hair color, whatever you see as beautiful, remember that one part contributes to the whole and therefore, all of you is beautiful. Practicing body positive thinking is a good first step to helping combat depression and anxiety.
"I am a beautiful woman. My partner thinks I am a beautiful woman too. My body is right for me."
I can grow.
Sometimes we can get stuck in a phase of discontent. As much as we strive to achieve success, we can hit plateaus, stages where we feel we can’t make more progress or achieve anything that will get us to the next chapter in our careers, and our personal lives. When we hit these kinds of walls, it can be easy to place the blame on ourselves or additional circumstances that we feel are preventing us from making progress in our goals.
The “I can grow” affirmation is especially helpful in this type of situation. When you feel stuck or you’re not sure what next step to take, whether in your career or your personal life goals, use this affirmation to set yourself up with the right mental attitude to push through it.
"I can grow by asking others for their insight and identifying the tools I need to take my goal to the next level."
I am greater than my fears.
Fear holds us back from doing many things. Fear can prevent us from advancing in our careers, pursuing personal dreams, entering and leaving relationships. Fear is the innate ability to recognize danger, and while it can be a helpful survival instinct, sometimes we see danger where there is none. We imagine the consequences that come with making a certain decision and blind ourselves to the other positive outcomes that can occur.
It’s important to recognize that your fears do not control you, you control them. You can recognize a problem and work to solve it. The “I am greater than my fears,” affirmation helps to reinforce a positive mental attitude that can help you with important decision-making.
"I am greater than my fears concerning my health. I can speak to experts to help me better understand what I need to do to take better care of my body and mind."
I will appreciate myself and others.
This one is something that a lot of people have difficulties with. Self-appreciation and the appreciation of others are often treated as entirely separate aspects of one’s personal life, but actually, they are more entwined than we may realize. We treat others similarly to how we treat ourselves. We project our own state of mind onto others on a regular basis, even when we are not actively trying to.
When we fall into episodes of self-belittlement or low self-esteem, that mentality can permeate our behavior and affect how we treat others. Have you ever had an extremely frustrating day that made you feel angry and stressed so you said something hurtful to someone else, even to friends and family?
It happens to us all at some point, and that’s because of fixating on that negative attitude. So, instead of allowing it to affect our behavior with others, we must learn to appreciate and accept ourselves even when we’re at our low points.
"I will appreciate myself and others even when I’m having a hard time."
Life is not perfect but it’s still good.
Above all, when times seem overwhelming, it’s important to remember the good things in life. These are the things we’re grateful for, the things that make us feel happy, or calm, or satisfied. Focusing on the things that you appreciate about your life and help lower those feelings of anxiety.
So think about the things that you are grateful for. It could be something as simple as your morning cup of coffee or a rainy day. It could be your family, your children, your partner. It could be your job, your colleagues, the work that you do. No matter what they are, thinking about the things in life that make you feel good are important to remember, especially during times of stress.
"Life is not perfect but it’s still good because I have a wonderful family, a steady-paying job, and I live in a place that I love."
Affirmations Can Help You
When all else fails and you feel overwhelmed with stress, anxiety, depression, and other negative mental states, practice your affirmations. The more you say it, the more you believe in it, the better you’ll feel. Affirmations can help you better manage those stresses and anxieties. So be sure to practice your affirmations and be sure to construct ones that work best for you. Your mental health is important, so be proactive in supporting it.