I Am Rooted: Affirmations and How to Use Them

A guide to affirmations…

For the past week I have been feeling out of sync and a little lost.  I have flitted between feelings of happiness and sadness, each change leaving me unmotivated, unfocused and all in all, a little bit flat.  These emotions have continued to fluctuate and interchange in a heartbeat, leaving me in a state of mild confusion and frustration.  However, I am here to assure you (and myself!) that these moods do pass and it is all just part of life’s rich tapestry!  I am also here to discuss the methods I use to help boost me out of these funks and get back on track with more positivity and certainty, in particular, affirmations.

As my Yoga practice has developed and grown, I have really started to understand and learn the importance of a good, solid affirmation.  For those of you reading this who still feel a little uncertain about what an affirmation is, let me explain…

Affirmations derive from the concept of a mantra.  Traditionally, a mantra is a sound or word typically used within Hinduism and Buddhism, to aid concentration or meditation.  This sound or word is repeated continuously, allowing the person a steady focus throughout their practice.  ‘OM’ is a perfect example and is a well recognised mantra, used regularly by yogis and meditators, it is believed to help attain higher spiritual or creative power.  Affirmations continue to build on this concept.  The dictionary definition of an affirmation is:  the action or process of affirming something. This is exactly what a personal affirmation aims to achieve for the self.  By setting yourself a simple but positive statement, you can assist in affirming yourself to yourself!  A affirmation should be short, simple, and positive.  Like a mantra, repeat it with certainty, allow it to take hold of your concentration and focus, so it becomes permanent within your very being.

Creating Your Affirmation…

In Yoga, you will offer find teachers asking you to create your own personal mantra or affirmation at the beginning of a practice.  This can be a daunting task.  Suddenly, the pressure is on to find a sentence that resonates with you!  Don’t panic and also don’t feel you have to have a deeply profound affirmation every time.  In fact, the simpler the better!  Personally, I usually begin with ‘I Am…’ and then fill in the blank as necessary.  Usually I focus on words which affirm to myself the opposite of what I am feeling at that time.  So, for example, this week as I have been feeling out of sorts and not rooted in what I am doing, my affirmation is: I Am Rooted.  Short and to the point.  In other cases I have chosen things such as ‘I Am Joy‘, for when I am feeling unhappy; or ‘I Am Successful’, when I feel like my business and finances are going down the drain!

Repeating these simple but powerful phrases can do you the world of good. It doesn’t have to be rocket science, it just has to be something which resonates with you and assists in changing your outlook when it all looks a bit bleak.  OR use your affirmation to  reaffirm part of you life which is going positively!  An affirmation doesn’t always have to be about the low times, it can boost up the areas which are already great – it is always beneficial to remind yourself of these!

When to Use Your Affirmation?

The perfect part of an affirmation?  You can use them anytime, anywhere!  Personally, I will repeat an affirmation to myself 3 – 5 times in the morning, sat in a comfortable position, eyes closed, whilst tuning in with the breath.  I will repeat this process later that day, in the same posture or before moving through a fluid yoga flow and attempt to embody the words throughout.  However, if you are not a yogi or meditator, you can still utilise this powerful practice.  Repeat your affirmation as you brush your teeth, whilst you shower, or whilst you eat!  There is no place unsuitable for an affirmation.  So go wild!

Mind over matter after all…

Find a comfortable seated position. Close the eyes, connect in with the breath through the nose and gradually soften the shoulders, jaw and space between the eyes.  Repeat your affirmation 3 -5 times, or as many times as you feel you need to. 

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