We know language is very powerful – but what about the language we use with ourselves? You can harness the power of language to change your thinking and change your life.
With one simple change in your thinking, you can start to use the power of language to get what you want: focus on affirmative thinking.
Affirmative thinking is constantly reinforcing what you want.
Compare that to negative messaging, which is confirming what you don’t want.
Consciously or unconsciously, we too often lean toward the negative. “I should not have a second piece of cake.” “I’m trying to give up gossiping.” But that simply has us constantly emphasizing and thinking about the very thing we’re trying to get away from!
In affirmative thinking, we instead think about what we want, over and over, to create a new track: “I want to stay fit and healthy.” “I’m remembering to focus on the good in people.”
Go easy on yourself as you get started; it takes time to adjust our thinking. Just pay attention to the words going through your mind, and if you catch yourself in negative thinking, practice changing those thoughts to the affirmative.
For example, let’s say you hear yourself saying, “I’m trying to cut back on caffeine.” As soon as you recognize the negative message, turn it around and say it again in the affirmative. An alternative might be, “I’ll choose herbal tea instead.” Always look for the affirmative message. On a daily basis, if you pay an attention to the messages you’re sending to yourself, you may find a number of negative messages, focusing on the problem, worrying about the challenges, looking at what’s not going well, scaring yourself about what you can’t do and don’t do well. The negative messages scroll through our head so unconsciously, but they are constantly reinforcing negative messages.
Train yourself to listen to your thoughts. Think of those negative thoughts, that little grumbling running around your head, as trying to sabotage the success you want for yourself. When you see them, sweep them all away and remember to replace them what you want.
Even though on the surface they sound like the same message, one of them reinforces what you are trying to do. Always choose an affirmative message. If you’re talking to your boss, say “I want a raise,” instead of, “I haven’t had a raise in three years.”
Or, if you’re talking with someone you work with, say, “I want you to write this report,” instead of, “you haven’t even written that report.”
Always ask yourself: What is the affirmative message? Yes, you may have problems, maybe a challenge you may not be sure of going to do well, but what do you want? “I want to do well.”
Now you have the makings of an affirmative message. Can you hear how quickly you can shift from negative, self-defeating, downward spiral to positive message? “I’m going to do well.” Say that over and over in your head and you have an affirmation that eventually becomes reality.
For more ways to create a win-win for yourself, and your company, see Joelle’s most recent book: The New Advantage.