Questions and Affirmations - The Art (and Science) Of Talking To Yourself
I Hear Voices?
This is not a statement of paranormal; it is a statement of truth. Yes, we all have an inner voice?Is yours an ally or an enemy? Do you realize you say things to yourself you would never let anyone else say to you? Don't let your inner voice tear you down and strip away your confidence.
All outward success first starts with inward success...learn the secret strategies to winning communication with your self.
"Men ought to know that from the brain and from the brain only, arise our pleasures, joys, laughter and sorrows. ?Through it, we think, see, hear and distinguish the ugly from the beautiful, the bad from the good, the pleasant from the unpleasant?To consciousness, the brain is messenger." -Hippocrates
Did you know that each day you have more than 50,000 random thoughts flying around in your head? You might find it interesting to note that we all have voices in our head. Sometimes the voice is calm and reassuring providing you with great confidence in your abilities. Other times, this voice is the negative and self limiting voice that calls into question all of your deficiencies. The voice that brings up all of the past failures and shortcomings and reminds you of all of the things you have going against you.
In sports, this voice is the last thing you hear before you take action. In interaction with others, it is sometimes the voice that challenges your worth in relation to others and weakens our own esteem.
Although we are born with this amazing supercomputer, the most complex and incredible instrument known in the universe, it does not come with an owner's manual.
Success principles are not secrets; they are hiding in plain view.
Famed journalist, Edward R. Murrow remarked, "The obscure we eventually see. The completely obvious, it seems, takes longer." They are not reserved for the rich or famous, but to everyone who will apply them. We are inborn by our creator with tools to guide us and protect us and to open the world of abundance to us; if only we will let it.
Like understanding the law of gravity will place you on your bottom if you violate it, principles of success are laws of nature. Every idea you produce consciously produces subconscious activity to fulfill what was first created in your mind.
A farmer choosing what to plant in a field is like the conscious mind. The field itself is the subconscious mind. Whatever the farmer plants, the field grows. The field does not possess a will of its own; it must grow what was planted. It would be ridiculous to think of the farmer planting corn and having beans grow. In the same way your subconscious mind will carry out the actions our conscious mind directs. If the farmer neglects the field and plants nothing, there will still be growth. The growth will be wild and weedy based on whatever was accidentally planted.
Over time the field will be out of control with weeds. In the same way our minds, if not consciously directed, will fill with mental weeds.
There is good news!
The good news is that just like any other skill, you can learn to take greater control of your inner voice and in doing so, create greater control of your life.
"The greatest discovery of my generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind." -William James
Create Your Destiny
Questions and Affirmations
The Power of Positive Questions
Most people ask themselves the wrong question which produces a negative subconscious effect. You can learn to program your super computer brain by learning to ask yourself the right questions. The key is to ask yourself solution-based, positive and empowering questions rather than negative, disempowered, problematic questions.
In the past, you may have asked questions like the following. "Why am I so fat?" "Why is my life such a failure?" "Why do bad things always happen to me?" "Why am I so stupid?" These questions and all the ones like it take a terrible toll on you.
First they start with a negative assumption, stated as fact with the question supporting the wrong conclusion. If you ask yourself, "Why is my life in the crapper?" any answer you give provides support to the negative assumption. This can be compared to an attorney taking a witness from the opposing side down the path to prove the lawyer's point.
Next time you find yourself doing this, interrupt yourself with the quip, "Objection your Honor; leading the witness!"
Improving your condition comes through asking yourself better questions. This allows the creative inspiration to work through our subconscious to bring about the conditions or magnetize the conditions we seek.
You not only have the ability, but also all the resources necessary to learn anything you need to learn to fulfill any ambition or achieve any goal you desire. The goal for your questions to yourself in any situation should be outcome or solution based. The assumption is that there is an issue that needs to be fixed. Rather than what was presented above, look at an approach leading to an action conclusion. "What do I need to change about my habits to get to my fitness goal?" "What do I want to do with my life that gives me meaning and satisfaction?" "What do I need to do differently to change this string of results?" "What can I learn and apply from this?" "What is affecting my mood that makes me feel my life is not going the right direction?"
Tony Robbins asserts, "Questions provide the key to unlocking our unlimited potential." Probably the single best question you can begin to ask yourself in any situation is, "What outcome do I want from this event/situation?"
You may certainly wish to adapt this slightly, but when you go into a situation, whether it is a business meeting or negotiation or class, knowing your desired outcome is vital. As I began to work on this habit in earnest for myself, I was simply amazed at how many actions I took and how many activities I worked on without asking this clearly up front? I need to research a better mortgage for my house. What is my ideal outcome? Is it lower payments, less interest over time, more house for my money, flexibility? Without knowing the right question, the answers don't help much. What outcome do I desire for my relationship with my spouse and children? Do I know and plan or just let it happen?
We have the power through understanding and training of our subconscious minds to plant the seeds and affirm health, security, happiness, abundance. We also have the opportunity to allow society's programming to plant the seeds of lack, insecurity, fear, doubt, and negativity. I am not speaking about deep hypnosis or anything out of the ordinary.
It takes practice to keep your mind free from worry and insecurity. It takes dedication to constantly feed your mind new information and positive stimuli that will provide positive associations. It takes vigilance to associate with positive people and positive influences. Make sure your questions ask for what you want, not what you don't want.
Remember?your mind is a supercomputer. In addition to the information and educational programming you provide as input to your computer, how you talk to yourself and the questions you ask is the most influential factor in your outcome.
The Simple Power of Affirmations
We need to find a way to control our thoughts to keep them as allies rather than adversaries. In her book, The Secret Door To Success, the late Florence Scovel Shinn talks about having a Watchman at the gate of our thoughts. Her assertion is that we have the power to choose our thoughts. She uses an analogy of a single sheep dog controlling frightened sheep into the pen through gentle determination.
"We cannot always control our thoughts, but we can control our words, and repetition impresses the subconscious, and we are then master of the situation."
Although her book was written in the early 1900s, she hits upon a tool that is one of the best and yet underutilized tool for controlling and programming your thoughts, the power of affirmation.
Affirmation as a mental programming technique is an extremely powerful tool, yet one that is scoffed at by many. Affirmations are tremendously misunderstood and very much underutilized. What you may not realize is that you use them all the time although most time not to your benefit. Affirmations are simply statements of intent. You can develop into all that you desire to be based on what you chose to affirm about yourself.
I Am The Greatest!!
Mohammad Ali is one of the most widely known and recognized sports figures as a former heavyweight boxing champion of the world. Ali is famous for his repeating of an affirmation he used with great effectiveness to convince not only himself, but also his opponents and the rest of the world. "I am the Greatest!" Mohammad Ali's affirmation created his legacy.
Like goals, affirmations work best when they are worded in the present tense as "I am" or "I achieve" type statements. The mind cannot hold a negative. Affirmations are nothing more than affirming the truth as you wish it to be to instruct your subconscious mind to take action in that direction. It is really very simple.
Affirmations help you believe in your dreams and what you wish to be. Belief is essential to convincing your subconscious to act the direction you want to go. Affirmations are like exercise. You will not see immediate results until you create the habit which over time helps you build strength in yourself and in your beliefs. This ultimately affects your actions which affect your results.
An affirmation in some cases might be a lie at present, but you are in a sense trying to convince your subconscious that it can be true to make it a reality in the future.
"To affirm anything is to state that it is so, and to maintain this as being true in the face of all evidence to the contrary. Repeating an affirmation is leading the mind to that state of consciousness where it accepts that which it wishes to believe."-Ernest Holmes
Sometimes we inadvertently affirm and reinforce old established beliefs. "I am so stupid." "I'm going to lose this account." "I always flub this shot." "There is no way I can make this deadline." "I gain weight just smelling chocolate." "I need a drink." "I am a horrible golfer." I can't speak in public." "I could never write a book." "I am such a klutz." "I never win." "I'm not smart enough to do that." "I could never do something like that." "I am such an idiot sometimes." "I would lose my head if it were not attached."
Have you ever said things like this to yourself; or worse to others about yourself? Of course you have?we all have done this. This kind of talk while sometimes self effacing and done for positive effect, can actually have negative consequences. If taken to extreme and developed into a habit or pattern of self talk, the message and programming can be damaging. The issue that separates people is their underlying attitudes and beliefs about themselves. How do you respond to setbacks and adversity? Do you take it in stride, or do you take the glum and negative approach of "this always happens to me, I never catch a break, etc."
The other choice is to create and affirm and reinforce our desired positive beliefs. This happens all day long, moment by moment, and takes hold a little at a time. "This is easy." "I only eat when I am hungry." "I feel great when I exercise." "I know I can drop the pounds when I put my mind to it." "What an awesome day!" "I don't run and hide from problems, I attack." "I feel great!" "My life is really working." "I see a lot of opportunities in this situation."
I have one friend who repeats to herself daily an affirmation of, "I feel healthy, I feel happy, I feel terrific!" Every time I see this person, I can tell it is real, applied and working in her life. Another friend of mine, when asked how she is, replies glumly sounding like the always depressed Eyore from Winnie The Pooh, "I'm here."
You make the call which one is progressing faster in their lives. Can you guess which one has more abundant opportunities "luckily" come her way?
The Art (and Science) of Affirmations
When you learn to change and direct your thoughts and your internal communication your life will reflect the change (law of correspondence). Creating affirmations can change your beliefs and change the course of your life. For affirmations and autosuggestion to be effective it needs to have the following six elements. In order to be effective, your positive declarations should embody most or all of the following characteristics:Personal (Usually a statement beginning with I)Positive (The mind cannot hold a picture of a negative)Present Tense (The time is now)Short (Easy to remember and easy apply)Specific (A specific target allows for a specific course of action and most direct route)Emotionally Intense (This is necessary to break through the clutter of the thousands of thoughts and images that you are bombarded with on a daily basis)
The real goal is to imbed this into the subconscious to allow it to do the yeoman's work. The only real obstacle is convincing your subconscious that you are serious and committed and that you truly have a burning desire for what you want. Long-term change will only happen when there is congruency between who you think you are and how you act and behave and the choices that we make.
Affirmations are Catalyst for Success
Positive affirmations mixed with emotional intensity produce amazing results. Music is an amazing mood catalyst. To really get the most out of affirmations and create an incredible Incremental Advantage in their effectiveness in your life, I suggest recording your affirmations to inspiring music.
A good friend of mine challenged me to do just this ten years ago. I purchased an inexpensive karaoke machine, put an upbeat instrumental tape in and recorded all of the affirmations I could create to change behaviors and support my goals.
Unless you are willing to step out of your comfort zone and give this a real opportunity to work in your life, you could never know the simply incredible power and way that this mental programming technique can work in your life. I literally wore my first tape out listening to it, but it created significant leverage and results for me. I know the vast majority reading this will not make the commitment to this habit. It is a shame, but for those of you who do, I promise your results in every area of your life will improve as your internal communication improves. I constantly look for, borrow, adapt and write down affirmations. I cannot claim originality for all of them as they have been collected and changed over the years.
- I turn challenges into opportunities.
- I eliminate debt as dead weight and a YOKE around my neck. I will only be as free as I am free from debt.
- I am a leader and a developer of people!
- I am calm and composed under pressure.
- Stress makes me stonger.
- I utilize my strengths and abilities to benefit everyone I come into contact with.
- I actively pursue excellence in myself and others.
- I get up at 5:00 every morning feeling energized and ready to take on the day.
- I face my fears and conquer them.
- I am empowered by the energy that I feel and that flows through me.
- My daily routines are positive and improving.
- I always increase my value to other people.
- I am flexible and adaptable in every situation. I look for creative alternatives and seek out new ways of accomplishing my goals.
- I have money in savings and a balanced plan for security and income growth.
- I see people, not as they are, but rather for what they can be.
- I am a strong, motivated and extremely dedicated leader.
- I am a great leader and achieve my victories thru the victories of those I serve.
- I choose to spend my time with positive and forward thinking life affirming people.
- I am persistent in the pursuit of my goals.
- Solutions and alternative ideas come easy for me.
- I take time each day to play and to enjoy my family.
- I am an excellent role model for others.
- I forget the mistakes of the past and press on to my greatest achievement.
"What a man thinks of himself that is what determines, or rather indicates his fate."
"I have learned this at least by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."
-Henry David Thoreau
Excerpted from Stack The Logs!
by Frank F. Lunn
for information about "Building a Success Framework to Reach Your Dreams," other valuable success resources or to purchase your copy, please visit www.stackthelogs.com" target="_new">www.stackthelogs.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About The Author
Frank F. Lunn is an expert in leadership, marketing, and small business entrepreneurship. A former military officer and Gulf War veteran, Lunn is the founder of the Kahuna Business Group, a $20 million annual company. Lunn is the author of STACK THE LOGS!: Building a Success Framework to Reach Your Dreams, pledging to donate 10 percent of all sales to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, where his son's life was saved.