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Affirmations: The Key to Training Your Mind for Greater Success

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The notion of talking to yourself, that is affirmations, have been around for as long as the personal development industry. If you’re not familiar, an affirmation is a positive declaration usually beginning with the word “I”. It is meant to bring into the present some future behavior or condition that you would like to see occur now. The power of affirmation is that they can control your thinking, but you control the affirmation. So, the more affirmations that you recite, the more you are focusing on what is truly important to you.

Most of you are familiar with the psychological notion of affirmation, and I will explain that in more detail, but I doubt you are familiar with theological and metaphysical reasons why affirmations work. Thus, you will find three paths theological, psychological, and metaphysical to the same end.

Please keep in mind, the goal here is to get you to use affirmations! So here it goes:

The theological argument for using affirmations

There is an old saying in Judeo-Christian thought that God helps those who help themselves. If we are in a fugue, or mentally debilitating state, the theory goes that if we begin moving out of that state God will multiply our efforts. But it is up to us to begin the process. Notice, when Jesus said, “Ask and you shall receive”, that the onus is on us to initiate the process.

Before we can receive, we must ask. Thus, the use of affirmations begins the process of us asking for divine assistance. Many religions use affirmations as a way of invoking greater aid from the divine source.

The psychological argument for affirmations

Since we consciously develop affirmations and repeat them over and over, it is assumed that our subconscious mind will absorb them and tag them as true. While the conscious mind has power of cognition, the subconscious mind has the power of accomplishment. And, the subconscious mind will begin to perform in accordance with what our conscious mind tells us is proper.

By repeating affirmations consistently, we are programming our subconscious mind for greater success and whatever else the affirmations contain. Most personal development programs use this argument for the use of affirmations, and it is very well researched and documented that this is a very dynamic process in rewiring our thinking.

“Affirmation without discipline is the beginning of delusion.” – Jim Rohn

The metaphysical argument for affirmations

By careful reading, you will find that the personal development and success industry over the last 60 years or so is based upon much of the metaphysical writing from the mid-19th century to the first quarter of the 20th century. This movement, called, “The New Thought” movement can be mapped directly to the aforementioned industry.

The underlying belief is that positive affirmations generate a higher level of vibration than simply allowing our mind to wander and perhaps entangle into negative thinking. Since higher-level vibrations always absorb or destroy lower-level vibrations, it is assumed that by consciously directing our mind we will attain a higher level of vibration.

So, there you have it, three different arguments as to why you should use affirmations. Over the past three decades I have found that many people have tried them and, unfortunately have stopped using them because they simply didn’t work for them.

Below, is a system that I have taught for a number of decades to firmly install the use of affirmations, and, more importantly to see their results. Give this a try before completely crossing out affirmations off your list.

  1. Here are seven broad areas of your life: physical, mental, spiritual, social, family, career, and personal development. Choose an area of your life that you are presently having some difficulty in. It doesn’t matter which one it is, and you need to absolve yourself of any of the vestiges of guilt for choosing one over the other. For example, if you are having family issues, but feel as though you are a physical wreck, and you want to work on that first, do it!
  2. What would you like to see changed in the particular area of your life that you chose? For example, if you chose physical, and you are overweight, what you might like to see is perhaps 30 less pounds. You might also like to see a firmer, more built-up muscular system. That’s fine. It’s your life. The choice is up to you.
  3. Develop the affirmations that make sense to you and that excite you. For example, to simply say, “I will lose 30 pounds.” is about as exciting as an old gym sock. Try, “I am 30 pounds lighter and fit into pants two sizes smaller, and I look great!” Do you see the difference?
  4. Dig down deep into the emotion of why you want the change in your life. Not just the change, but why you want to change. Then, on the front of an index card write the affirmation as you will say it, and on the back of the index card the reason you want that change to occur.
  5. Say your affirmations at least three times a day when you wake up, midday and when you go to bed. But have them with you. So, if you are stuck in traffic instead of cursing at the people in front of you. Use this as vital time to reprogram yourself by stating your affirmations.
  6. This point is critical! Don’t just say your affirmations! Feel them! Your conscious mind will utter the words, your subconscious mind will feel the result. It is up to you to infuse the affirmation with emotion.

I have seen this work countless times. And I still use this process myself. Let me know what you think about my affirmation routine below!

Biagio Sciacca, known to his friends as Bill, was a lifelong resident of Pittston, PA. He is the owner of Intelligent Motivation, Inc. a global consulting and training firm specializing in management and leadership training as well as psychological assessment for hiring and staff development. He is the author of several books relating to goal setting, and his third book, Provocative Leadership, is publishing soon. Now residing in Tamarindo, Costa Rica, he divides his time between his international coaching and training clients, writing his next book and wandering aimlessly on the beach. Feel free to contact Bill at bill@intelligentmotivationinc.com or schedule a call with him by going to www.intelligentmotivationinc.com and clicking on the “set up a call” tab.

Success Advice

5 Smart Goals to Make This Year Your Most Successful Ever

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Setting goals at the start of the year means you will know exactly what you need to do throughout the year to be successful. By setting goals, it forces you to build a plan about how you intend to achieve those goals. By having a plan in place, you will wake up every morning with a clear idea of what it is you need to do each day. Just by writing down your goals, there is a 42% greater chance you will achieve those goals than if they just stayed in your head. It may seem like a small thing but actually creating goals every year and then writing them down significantly improves your chances of success. (more…)

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7 Ways to Face Adversity Using the Power of Extreme Ownership

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Adversity is an inevitable part of our lives, and it is an important and defining factor of our personal story. The stories we build for ourselves in the face of adversity will either empower or discourage us emotionally, help us move forward or remain stuck in the past, allow us to grow or to decline. (more…)

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Why Your Confidence Needs to Match Your Competence

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Even if you produce amazing results at your job or in other areas of your life, others may still not see you as being competent if you lack the confidence to back it up. If you are good at your job, exuding confidence will ensure others also recognize your competence in your area of expertise. And research backs this up. (more…)

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5 Things You Can Learn From The 5am Club by Robin Sharma

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It has been said by Robin Sharma, “5 AM is the time of least distraction, highest human glory, and greatest peace.” This also happens to be the central idea or the core value he has discussed in his book, ‘The 5 Am Club.’ Speaking of early mornings, at what time do you wake up? Are you annoyed by the fact that you wake up on the edge of time and then rush to work in haste? 

The life lessons put forth by The 5 AM Club are exactly the learning and motivation you need to challenge your complacency. In your race against time, you may not have the time to read this fabulous book. So, we have summed up the key book’s takeaways for your convenience.

1. The vigor of waking up early

This is what the book’s most fundamental advice to everyone is. Waking up at 5 am every day can work wonders to avert failures and make success a natural habit. When we wake up at 5 am, we have more time on our hands than others. Besides, this is when we have minimum interruptions and maximum powerfulness of the mind. 

To add, the early morning peace is priceless! You can schedule your most important tasks of the day between 5am, and 8am. This book teaches us in the simplest way, how we can train our mind and strengthen it to deliver the highest productivity by waking up early. This energy that you have when you wake up in the morning and the few additional hours in your day are what serve as perfect ingredients for success.

“The secret to productivity is simplicity.” – Robin Sharma

2. The power of finding the right balance in life

The book talks about a precious lesson of finding the right balance within. We often talk about the need for mindfulness and achieving the right mindset to perceive things. But this book goes a few steps ahead of our usual approach to life. It highlights the vitality of mindset and introduces the concepts of heartset, healthset, and soulset.

These terms may seem new, but they are self-explanatory. The idea of heartset endorses the essentialness of emotional stability and well-being. Next, the perspective of healthset indicates the need to look after physical health. At last, soulset is an attribute of spirituality. As explained in this book, success prospects can be enhanced big time by achieving the right balance between these internal virtues.

3. The iconic 20/20/20 modus operandi

What is the first thing you will do if you start waking up at 5 am every day? Did you ever spare a thought about it? This book has the answer to this question, and you will be convinced that it is a great way to begin your day!. The author suggests that you should split the first hour of the day into three equal parts of 20 minutes each.

In the first 20 minutes of the day, you should prioritize your physical fitness and exercise. In the next 20 minutes, you should energize your soul and spirit via self-reflection and soulful meditation. This will prepare you for the rest of the day and will enable you to bolster your commitment and focus. In the last 20 minutes of the first hour, you should read and learn. But what are you going to read about in those 20 minutes? Read about successful people and their inspiring journeys to the pinnacle of success.

4. The significance of a proper sleep schedule

In this book, there is a mention of ‘a ferocious global sleep recession’, which is intriguing and enlightening. It hints at the state of sleep deprivation that this world is sinking into gradually. We often associate success and hard work with the notion of staying up all night and testing our endurance beyond limits. But that is not the right approach to accomplishing success, or rather, it is a flawed methodology.

Sometimes even if we do not have any critical work, we keep whiling our night time on social media or television. What are we gaining from it is the real question, and I am afraid the answer is nothing! We learn from this book that it is critical to look after your sleep cycle and start your day at 5 am afresh. Sleep and rest are indispensable for mental and physical well-being, or your productivity will decline.

“If you want to have the results only 5% have, you must be willing to do and think like only 5% do and think.” – Robin Sharma

5. The art of evolving

The book sheds light on the need to be spiritual and master self-reflection. However, do you realize the purpose that the routine of reflection each morning serves? The idea is to keep learning, keep reflecting on the mistakes and keep evolution an ongoing process. You should evolve every day and strive to be a better version of yourself every day. So, one of your primary goals after waking up should be to reflect on your actions and missed opportunities of the previous day.

To recapitulate, The 5 AM Club is a must-read book if you are a passionate reader. It has the prowess and charm to refurbish your perception of life altogether. Even if you cannot read the book for some reason, make sure you incorporate the above key takeaways into your life. By starting your day at 5 am, you can rediscover your lost soul and enthusiasm, and you would not have complaints to make about the lack of time. If you can own your mornings, you can go places on the ladder of success, for excuses are only for those who are not committed to their goals.

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