Summary: If you're self-aware enough to know you need help, you're ready to use the checklist below to create your own, customized affirmation statement to further your personal growth.
A couple of weeks ago, I told you an important first-step question for creating your own, personally customized affirmation. (Bonus points to you if you can think of that question before scrolling down to read on!) Today, I'd like to explore with you a little more about the self-awareness you need to even realize that an affirmation may help you.
If you really are interested in creating your own affirmation, you already have a good portion of that self-awareness, or self-honesty. This will take you a long way. Keep using that self-awareness as you answer the questions in the checklist below.
Start by thinking of the situation or problem that causes you to struggle the most. (For example, asking superiors for extra responsibility or recognition might make you so nervous that you avoid such conversations altogether; when approaching someone you're attracted to, you might become so fearful that you overcompensate by bragging—often unwittingly chasing that potential mate away.) Then, as you project yourself as viscerally as possible into the most recent situation that created issues for you, ask yourself the answers to the following questions:
(1) How did I feel in my body at this time?
(2) How did I feel, emotionally? (If you find it difficult to name your emotions, check out my late August '09 post on Emotional Awareness Resources to help you jump-start.)
(3) What thoughts was I thinking at the time?
Separate your thoughts into two categories: Thoughts about yourself and thoughts about everything else (the circumstance, others involved in it, etc.). Then ask:
(4) Do these thoughts about myself make me want to expand and grow?
If the answer is no, you know undoubtedly that an affirmation is just what you need to help you through similar circumstances in the future. Then ask yourself:
(5) How would I feel if someone else spoke to me the way I'm speaking to myself in my head via the thoughts I'm having about myself?
(6) What is the opposite emotion from this one (the one I have when I speak to myself/think this way)?
Finally, you're ready to create your affirmation. Look for a sentence that proactively illustrates positive self-talk. ... Look for next week's post with some concrete examples!
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