Good Housekeeping – Staying Centered, Coping, Living Fully

Good Housekeeping Jan 2009
Good Housekeeping Jan 2009

‘Really want it. An effective affirmation can’t be half-hearted. “It needs to be a want, not a should,” says psychiatrist Tracy Latz, M.D., co-author of Shift: 12 Keys to Shift Your Life, who uses affirmations in her North Carolina practice. “Get in touch with your deepest self and discover what it is that you want with all your heart. Then affirm that. What matters is that you really desire it.”
Suspend disbelief. “You don’t have to believe that your affirmation is true right now, but you have to believe in the possibility of getting what you want,” says Dr. Latz. “If you allow that nay-saying voice in your head to negate the affirmation as soon as you say it, it won’t work.”
Keep it short, to the point, and positive. The statement should be brief and in your own words, so that you can remember it easily when you need to focus. And, explains Dr. Latz, an affirmation should be expressed positively: “I’m happy” rather than “i’m not upset.” If you think in the negative, “you place your emphasis on lack rather than on possibility, and the latter approach is the likelier to lead to success.”
Write it and repeat it. “Jot down your statement and post it in a place where you can see it every day – on your mirror, your computer monitor, the dash of your car,” says Dr. Latz. “You can just think it in your head, but nothing is more powerful than voicing it. Saying your affirmation out loud implies a commitment that makes it more likely you’ll take the actions to reach your goal.” There’s no magic number of times to invoke your phrase, but repetition helps.’