When you reflect on the way you speak to yourself, is it largely positive or negative?
I’m sure we all have moments when our self-confidence is running particularly low, or we’re just not feeling the greatest about ourselves. On those days, it can become fairly easy to get caught up in negative self-talk patterns.
Pimple? “I’m so ugly.” Bad hair day? “I’m a mess.” Didn’t have the best sleep? “I’m always so exhausted.” Made a mistake? “I’m such a failure.”
Whether we truly believe it or not, this kind of dialogue can quickly become our norm without us even realizing it. The problem with this (aside from the fact that we don’t deserve it!) is that many of us do not recognize the power of our own thoughts and words.
The concept of manifestation holds, essentially, that whatever you focus on becomes your reality. We create our own self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, what we think and the way we think about ourselves can totally become real for us, regardless of whether it’s positive or negative.
In that case… What would happen if our self-talk was positive and uplifting?
Using Self-Affirmation to Harness Positive Thinking
“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.”
Positive self-affirmations are simply short phrases that can help us combat and counter our negative self-thoughts, doubts, and sabotaging statements. Think of them like self-defense tactics for, well, ourselves. These are what we’ll use to create our personal mantra.
Seija Grant, MEd CP, RP, registered psychotherapist, states that “there are many ways to use self-affirmation to strengthen your self-concept (such as compassion and esteem),” and a personal mantra is a very simple way to do so.
Lifting Ourselves Up Instead of Tearing Ourselves Down
According to Rosetta Thurman, the founder of Happy Black Woman:
“A personal mantra is a positive phrase or affirmative statement that you say to yourself for the purpose of motivation or encouragement.”
Creating your own mantra can be incredibly powerful, to say the least, because in the same way that consistent negative self-talk can be damaging to your reality, positive self-talk can do the exact opposite.
How to Create Your Own Personal Mantra
Grant explains that the easiest way to create your own personal mantra is by choosing at least 3 statements (or affirmations) that you want to believe about yourself but currently do not, or maybe you (mostly) do, but you just need some reminding. Either way, the statements must be positive, and the more specific they are to you and your situation, the better.
Grant offers this list of statements to help you get started and encourages you to try creating your own, too.
30 Statements That Can Boost Self-Compassion and Self-Esteem
I have confidence in my skills.
I am not afraid to be wrong.
Happiness is within my grasp.
I am confident in the presence of others.
I will say “No” when I do not have the time or inclination to act.
The only person who can defeat me is myself.
If I fail, I will fail forward.
My confidence knows no limits.
I choose hope over fear.
Positivity is a choice that I choose to make.
I will not take other peoples’ negativity personally.
I am a diamond. It is time for me to shine.
I am loved and I am wanted.
I will stop apologizing for being myself.
Negative self-talk has no place in my life.
My mind, body and soul are fit and strong.
I am grateful for the things I have.
I love myself for who I am.
I grow in strength with every forward step I take.
I can do anything I set my mind to do.
When I breathe, I inhale confidence and exhale fear.
I live in the present and am confident about the future.
I am self-reliant, creative and persistent in whatever I do.
I love challenges. They bring out the best in me.
Today I am willing to fail in order to succeed.
I am proud of myself for even daring to try.
I am a unique and special person worthy of respect from others.
I like myself better and better each and every day.
It matters little what others say. What matters is how I react and what I believe.
My mind is full of gratitude for my lovely and wonderful life.
So, You’ve Created Your Mantra. What’s Next?
Grant encourages her clients to write out their mantra on a sticky note and place it on their mirror, or anywhere else that’s accessible throughout the day. Then, she indicates that every morning when you wake up, you should “look yourself in the mirror and repeat your mantra out loud.”
Repeat, Repeat, Repeat.
While it may feel silly at first, Grant explains that repeating your mantra over and over again can be hugely beneficial for your overall self-concept. “Over time,” she says, “what you are saying to yourself will begin to feel true, and will very likely have a positive impact on your self-worth.”
Goodbye, negative self-talk.
Do you have a personal mantra?
Are there any statements/affirmations that you would add to this list?
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Photo: Ovayo Ntlabati on Unsplash