Do Daily Affirmations Really Work?
It had been a quiet day, the same as most others, the house was clean, the family fed, my work, was almost complete (I still had to put Brooke to bed and do a final clean up of toys before going to bed myself). I headed out, as I often did, for an after dinner walk, alone. I’ve shared this story before, the story of how I started crying and couldn’t stop, of how that night changed my life in so many ways. That night, a wound that had been festering under the surface for most of my life, burst open. I could no longer ignore it, stuff it down, or pretend it didn’t exist. While it was terrifying to have all my demons burst forth at once, I was ready to heal, willing to change, and, luckily, had just started seeing a therapist.
I was one of those souls in need of love, a soul who felt broken, and so alone in my struggles. I was grateful to have found a therapist, grateful to unburden myself, to have someone listen, and be willing to help me heal. I was happy to pay a therapist, so I didn’t burden my friends with all my turmoil and suffering.
After my first visit with Dr. Jo, I purchased a dedicated journal in which I poured my heart, and begged for additional reading material, or anything else that might aid in my healing. Dr. Jo recommended the book, “You Can Heal your Life” by Louise Hay. It was a simple book, with the major focus being self affirmation and learning to love one’s self. Each chapter focused on a different element of our beings, offering an opportunity to reflect, reframe and identify affirmations designed to address core issues.
To be honest, I wasn’t sure whether these daily affirmations would work, but I said them morning and evening, along with my prayers and meditations. I made my own affirmation cards, and an affirmation vision board, opening my heart as best I could to learning to love my broken, battered self.
It’s now been ten years, and my life has changed immeasurably. I rarely do affirmations any more, I’ve come to feel comfortable in my own skin, I’ve learned to love and nurture myself, to find peace, gratitude and joy thanks to my daily affirmations.
This is not to say I don’t have bad days, that I don’t experience anger or hurt, because I’m like everyone else in that regard. The difference is, I now have the tools to work through issues that emerge. When darkness bubbles up, I make time for it, I’m patient with it. I let it show me what it came to teach me. And for this knowing, I am eternally grateful to my beloved Dr. Jo and to Louise Hay for helping me lay the ground work for the healthy life I live today (Louise Hay, 1946-2017).