An affirmation is a way of reminding yourself of your strengths and reinforcing an uplifting or hopeful view of the future. This can be helpful if you find your thoughts continually returning to a dark or dismal view of life. When we’re in the stress response, our thinking can be very black and white.
You might feel that everything is terrible, whereas in reality, although certain aspects of your situation might be very difficult, there will be others that are not so bad. One way of making an affirmation is to think of something you aspire to or hope for and imagine yourself already there.
For example: “I will be there to walk my daughter down the aisle on her wedding day”.
When you’re troubled by dark thoughts, repeat your affirmation to yourself. Imagine the scene as clearly as you can using all your senses. You can also use affirmations to build a particular quality or strength in yourself. What we pay attention to will tend to grow, even if it’s quite small at the moment. For example: “I’m doing really well at managing my stress”. As you repeat this to yourself, bring to mind everything you’ve done that has in any way helped.