Yes, I believe you can. But, and there are quite a few buts, you can’t outright lie to your subconscious. If deep down, you don’t believe it your subconscious will call BS on your affirmation and you’ll end up in mental argument where your subconscious will counter the affirmation with negative thoughts and beliefs. This can totally cancel out any benefit from the affirmation and even lead you to feel worse than when you started.
While affirmations can greatly help to change self-limiting thought patterns, and thereby assist you with courage and motivation, it is important that you can believe them for them to work. Even if just a little bit. To read more about how affirmations work and the science behind them see my recent post, The Science of Positive Affirmations.
There are a lot of devotees of using positive affirmations and mantras to manifest everything from true love, perfect health and untold riches. Just type in, ‘can you change your life with positive affirmations?’ into the search bar in Google or any social media platform to see for yourself.
This type of positive thinking has become more popular in the mainstream since the release of the book and movie, The Secret, by Rhonda Byrne. But, this way of thinking has been around and written about for a very long time. See books by Florence Scovel Shinn, Napoleon Hill, James Allen etc. Click this link for a list of more books on this subject.
These books talk about The Law of Attraction. “Simply put, the Law of Attraction is the ability to attract into our lives whatever we are focusing on. It is believed that regardless of age, nationality or religious belief, we are all susceptible to the laws which govern the Universe, including the Law of Attraction. It is the Law of Attraction which uses the power of the mind to translate whatever is in our thoughts and materialize them into reality.” See more here.
Some recommend the, build it and they will come, type of affirmation. Or, fake it till you make it, with affirmations such as, “I am already wildly successful.” Or, “I have an abundance of wealth that allows me to do whatever I desire.” The point being is that you visualise yourself in the situation that you want and the power of your thoughts will manifest it into existence. Of course, the magic fairy dust needed to actually make it all work is a firm belief that it can and will happen. And that is where we can run into problems with some affirmations.
If you don’t believe in the affirmation you are saying then it will just set off a war in your own head and it just won’t work. No magic fairy dust. No magic manifestation.
We are better off using affirmations and mantras that focus more on progress, not perfection. For example, instead of, “I have an abundance of wealth that allows me to do whatever I desire.” We could say, “I am grateful for the abundance I receive and every day I am attracting more and more abundance into my life.” OK, that example is a bit of a mouthful but you get the gist. Another example is, instead of, “I am always perfectly calm and at peace”. Try, “I am feeling a little anxious right now but I am OK and I am working it out.” This type of statement is much more empowering because it acknowledges your truth and reframes the situation with a positive spin. And, this is what it is all about.
Affirmations that we can believe, do help us to reframe our thoughts and open us up to more positive experiences. When we look at our lives through a more positive lens, we actually create a more positive perception of our situation. Our perceptions govern our experiences. If we think it’s good, then it is good for us. If we believe better is coming, then that is what we will be expecting and what we will see. Bring it on.