My Thoughts

Positive Affirmations: Powerful or Not?

Just start positive affirmations

I have used positive affirmations for years to help me in my recovery and spiritual life. Is there really any power in them? In this blog, I’m going to get vulnerable about this and share mine and my experiences. Some people may say it’s New Age and I’m not interested. I also give scientific research to support the use of them.

When I began my recovery in 1988, I was open to anything that might alter the way I had been heading. I dove into attending meetings regularly and surrounding myself with recovery people. I lived in a place where there were only three – four sober women, so I did little step work then. We women co-sponsored each other and I mainly attended meetings.

Here’s a definition from

“They are positive phrases or statements used to challenge negative or unhelpful thoughts.”

I needed to replace the negative thoughts circling around and around in my head because they had influenced me and gotten me to my knees.

Scientific Research from

“There is MRI evidence suggesting that certain neural pathways are increased when people practice self-affirmation tasks (Cascio et al., 2016). If you want to be super specific, the ventromedial prefrontal cortex—involved in positive valuation and self-related information processing—becomes more active when we consider our personal values (Falk et al., 2015; Cascio et al., 2016).”

That sounds powerful!

My Start with Affirmations

When I moved to Albuquerque in 1991, I jumped into recovery more so with both feet, got a sponsor, started working the steps and listening to what I could do to help myself. When I read The Artist Way by Julia Cameron in 1992, I started with a short list of affirmations and it’s grown to this list:

  • I will love. I will laugh.
  • I will live a rewarding, creative life.
  • I will write. I will dance. I will walk.
  • As I create and listen, I will be led.
  • My creativity heals me and others.
  • I nurture my artist.
  • I have no enemies.

Over the years, as I faced my incest issues and continued to heal, I added:

  • The incest and rape hurt, but I don’t have to shout, shut up, shut down or shame anymore. I will protect myself now differently by pausing.
  • I promise to protect my little girl from the perpetrators. I must!

For many years, I have used Louise Hay’s positive affirmations from her book, You Can Heal Your Life. She has a list at the end of the book identifying Problem, Probable Cause, and New Thought Pattern. So, over the years, I have used a variety of Hay’s new thought patterns (positive affirmations) for my health woes.

Currently, I use:

  • Sinus—I declare peace and harmony indwell me and surround me at all time. All is well.
  • Allergies—The world is safe and friendly. I am safe. I am at peace with life.
  • Hip—I am in perfect balance; I move forward in life with ease with joy at every age.
  • Osteoporosis—I stand up for myself, and life supports me in unexpected, loving ways.
  • Shingles—I am relaxed and peaceful because I trust the process of life. All is well in my world.

Other positive affirmations I use are:

  • I surround to my Higher Power today.
  • I celebrate Larada today!
  • May all events today contribute to my spiritual awakening.
  • “Called or uncalled, God is present.” Carl Jung
  • “Rouse yourself up and look to God.” Oswald Chambers
  • No one dies, including me!
  • It’s on its way!
  • Everything I need now is here!

Over the years, I collected these in my reading and when someone shared their affirmations.

Also, I have added Biblical verses:

  • We are God’s poem! Ephesians 2:10
  • Search me God and know my heart, test and me know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23-24
  • Do everything in love. I Corinthians 16:14
  • I have chosen you. John 15:16, 19
  • “O hush the noise and cease your strife and hear the angels sing!” It Came Upon the Midnight Clear
  • Maranatha—Come, Lord Jesus!

The last few years, I added these Bible verses and Christian messages to my daily affirmations because they really feel like affirmations to me.

After all is said and done, post positive affirmations on the refrigerator door to see when you open it every day or on your mirror to read while you are brushing your teeth. Daily, I read my positive affirmations out of my journal, and they have directed me out of the dark sadness of addiction and pain into a world of positivity and possibilities. I truly feel these short phrases have turned my life around in a different direction. Powerful—yes!

Do you use positive affirmations? If so, share your favorites with me! I’d love to hear from you.

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