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I’m really good at beating myself up.
Always have been. In fact, I’m a pro.
I can nitpick every single one of my flaws for hours on end, I need to get everything right the first time round and God forbid I make any mistakes. Yup, I’m the type-A perfectionist overachieving woman.
It took me 25 years to come to the conclusion that I just can’t do this to myself anymore. And I won’t do this to myself anymore. If I can be an expert at talking myself down then I can also become an expert at praising myself.
And along came Louise Hay into my life.
Well, one of her books at least.
Louise Hay was a spiritual healer, author, speaker and activist who believed that repeating positive self-affirmations was the solution for most illnesses, self-doubting, worry, and financial problems.
She opens her book, You Can Heal Your Life, with the phrase: “What we think about ourselves becomes the truth for us.”
She herself had an incredibly difficult childhood, having been raped by one of her neighbours at the age of five, and later on in life she developed cervical cancer. She believed that her distress from her earlier life was what caused her cancer. Louise claims to have healed the cancer naturally by changing her diet as well as changing the beliefs she held about herself (using positive affirmations) and the negative feelings she held toward others.
This really proves how powerful our minds can be.
It is said that our mind is divided 10 percent into conscious and 90 percent subconscious. Our subconscious mind is where we hold all our fears, desires, memorised behaviours, and habits of thinking. Therefore, our thoughts are strongly influenced by the subconscious.
Now, if our subconscious mind is filled with negativity, self-destructive thoughts, and painful memories, it makes sense that our lives will reflect this. The outside mirrors the inside.
So what do we do?
We change all the dark, crappy, non-helpful thoughts into positive and uplifting ones through the repetition of positive self-affirmations.
Will change happen overnight?
No, of course not. Many of us have spent lifetimes talking down to ourselves. Louise Hay recommends repeating these small phrases at least 300-400 times a day to begin with. We can learn to think in positive affirmations.
Louise Hay also has some great meditation videos on YouTube which are good for listening to before going to sleep or first thing in the morning.
I have picked out six of my favourite Louise Hay self-affirmations hoping that they may help others in their healing journeys as well:
1. I trust the process of life.
I often think I am not where I am meant to be in life, or I feel impatient that I am not where I should be. But I can’t control everything. Instead, I say to myself: no, I trust the process of life.
2. I love myself just the way I am.
Even with all my flaws, and the parts of me I think are not good enough. Louise Hay recommends repeating this one in front of a mirror. Many people find this extremely difficult as they come to realise how much they have been beating themselves up over the years. Or how distanced they have become from their true selves.
3. I deserve the best and I deserve it now.
I’ve gone my whole life thinking I don’t deserve happiness. Why would I think that? Of course, I do!
4. I am willing to change.
Change is hard and naturally, our bodies will feel some sort of resistance to change. Especially if you have had these thinking patterns for many years. Remind yourself that you are changing for a better quality of life.
5. I forgive myself and set myself free.
From whatever we need to forgive ourselves from. Let’s ease the weight off our shoulders.
6. It’s only a thought, and a thought can be changed.
Some thoughts have become so deeply ingrained in our minds they feel like they are true. But they’re not, thoughts are not facts.
At the core of all these self-affirmations is learning to love the self. Maybe if we all truly learnt to love ourselves (even the not so pretty parts), all sorts of magic might start happening. Whether that be an improvement in health, relationships, finances, or sense of self-worth.
We are the ones who have to tell ourselves what we need to hear.