Affirmations are short, simple statements that are a form of positive self-talk. They are used to help you take control of how and what you think, which has a large impact on how you feel. Experts suggest that people have approximately 50,000 thoughts a day, which means about 2100 thoughts per hour. The National Science Foundation believes that of those 50,000 thoughts, 80% of them are negative. Many of these negative thoughts involve ruminating about the past and worrying about the future. As a result, these negative thoughts can prevent you from enjoying present day experiences and can lead to anxiety and depression.

Our thoughts are so automatic that the first step to dealing with the negativity, is to learn how to recognize it. Pay attention to your inner dialogue; really listen to yourself and when necessary, challenge those negative thoughts. One way of challenging negative thoughts is through affirmations.

Using affirmations daily have a calming effect and can help focus the mind by turning negative thoughts into positive ones.

Here are some affirmations that can be used when feeling anxious:

  • This is only temporary
  • I am in control
  • I can take things one step at a time
  • I’ve made it through before and I’ll make it through again
  • Anxiety doesn’t define me
  • I am safe in this moment
  • I am strong
  • I am beautiful
  • I am loved
  • Today is my day. I’ve got this!
  • I am confident
  • I am happy
  • I am blessed
  • I am grateful
  • This will pass. I can handle these symptoms
  • I am calm
  • Breathe in and out
  • Life is good

Take one or two of these affirmations or make up your own and say them to yourself regularly throughout the day. Speaking positively to yourself is a way of reminding yourself that things are not always what they seem. You can acknowledge that you feel anxious and can recognize the negative thoughts, but you don’t let them control you.

Using affirmations take practice. It is much more natural for our thoughts to be negative. Even on days when you don’t feel particularly anxious, it’s good to use affirmations. Training yourself to be a positive thinker takes time and effort; but it will pay off. The more positive you are, the less room there is for negativity and anxiety.