July 31, 2012

The Power of Affirmations

Focused Intentions
When a client comes for a session, the first step is to identify their goals and desired outcome. During hypnosis in particular, the client can imagine a new way of being and can take the steps to have it happen, as well as tap into their motivation as a program to success. During trance, the client is given suggestions to support their solutions. For example, I am relaxed and centered, and every moment counts. Affirmations are used in transpersonal psychology, but are also cross cultural. Prayers, mantras, chants, and blessings affirm one's place in the universe. Even something as little as saying bless you or Gesundheit after a sneeze is that affirmation of May you be blessed with health. We are also familiar with the expressions Bon Appetit or One day at a time.

Positive Thinking Works
Affirmations can be found everywhere: fortune cookies, horoscopes, angel cards, bumper stickers, quotes, and even lines from your favorite songs. I recently read that Melissa Ethridge kept a scrap of paper on which her surgeon had scribbled "You will be fine" next to her bed during her treatment for breast cancer, and how important it was for her to repeat those words as part of her healing process.  

Power of Suggestion
 The suggestions used are affirmations, a positive way to reinforce the client process. Affirmations work both during trance and as an anchor in daily life to continue to activate the subconscious mind and create constructive associations. As seen the documentary, What the Bleep Do We Know? it is in this way you can create new neural pathways to release different neuro chemicals then the ones you could be addicted to out of past programming.  

Gentle Reminders
Affirmations can be placed anywhere: in your bathroom, on mirrors, in your car, your fridge, your wallet, your computer screen saver. In my car I have a little dashboard compartment that when I flip up reveals the quote, "She Who Laughs, Lasts."
Affirmations are especially effective when put into the third person, and when put into the past tense. They change wishful thinking into willful thinking. Notice the difference in the saying "I wish I didn't have a broken heart"to "I will heal my broken heart" to "You have healed your heart."

Power of Affirmations
  From the dictionary - To affirm: to state or assert positively; to maintain as true; to confirm. Quite simply to make firm - to use as a foundation or basis for one's beliefs. Affirmations offer comfort, support and motivation.One of favorites, "...you are a child of the universe no less than the trees or stars, and whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should... -From 'Desiderata' by Max Ehrmann

Emotional Deposits
When we compliment another person, we are affirming their reality, we build their bank of self esteem by giving them an emotional deposit. Affirmations repeated for yourself add to your own bank of self-esteem for a feelings of confidence and personal success. Practice saying, I am a co-creator of my reality. I am now creating my life exactly as I want it.  

Engage Your Senses
Affirmations are especially effective when used with other modalities, for example using a hand mudra or other physical cue, or associating it with a scent. One client had a fear of flying, but through hypnosis she associated the smell of lavender with being relaxed, and before each flight would breathe in a sachet of lavender to feel calm and at ease.
  Change is Our Friend

When you stop seeing your affirmation, it's often because you have incorporated that message, or that message no longer serves you. Change your affirmations as you evolve into who you want to become. As my friend Laurie Biggers says, "Embrace Change as a doorway to a more peaceful existence."