Maybe there’s an affirmation for everyone.
I’m generally in favour of coping strategies that help people get through the hard parts of life, but for some reason I could never buy into positive affirmations. In fact, I’m known for affirmation hatred. To be clear, I’m not against anyone else whispering sweet nothings into their own ears, but affirmations felt ridiculous when I’d repeat them to myself. And then the coronavirus pandemic hit.
“For some people, self-affirmation is not going to do it for them because it’s too disconnected from who they are and who they want to be,” licensed clinical psychologist and founder of Long Island Behavioral, Regine Galanti, Ph.D. tells SELF. “But for others, they’re going to work really well.” The key, Galanti explains, is making sure your positive affirmations seem realistic. While it’s tempting to reach for the most ambitious phrase you can find, a resonant positive affirmation should “feel true for you on a good day,” Galanti says, adding that when you’re anxious or otherwise feeling bad, they could feel downright false. But that’s okay if the affirmation would feel true to you some of the time.
So what does the pandemic have to do with my newfound love of affirmations? Like millions of other people around the world, I’m spending a lot more time alone. With nothing but an endless loop of thoughts to keep me company, I’ve warmed up to positive affirmations as an innocuous way of sweet-talking myself through the bad stuff.
If you’re thinking about experimenting with positive affirmations, Galanti suggests practicing some self-compassion as well. “You have to try it repeatedly because it may not work the first time,” she says. She suggests trying a positive affirmation every day for two weeks to see how you feel. I hope they give you a little comfort. And if you’re not sure where to start, below you’ll find a list of affirmations that actually soothe me a little, many of which I’ve picked up from friends over time. Some work for me every day (see “I am safe”). Others feel more inspiring depending on the situation.
Here are 15 positive affirmations that might work for fellow cynics:
- I am safe.
- I am loved.
- This too shall pass.
- I am grounded, protected, and safe.
- I have the support I need and will lean into it as necessary.
- I’ve got this.
- Things are easier than they appear.
- Be here now.
- I am in charge of how I feel, and right now I choose peace.
- I have what I need to succeed.
- Something good will happen today.
- Everything is unfolding as it should.
- The universe is conspiring in my favor.
- I recognize the blessings in my life.
- I am planted, rooted, and growing every day.
'This article originally appeared on SELF'