Research shows that our thoughts and words register on the subconscious and cellular levels of the body.  It is clear that how we speak to children can leave permanent impressions, and the same applies to how we think about and talk to ourselves.  Negative thoughts about ourselves can lead to low self-esteem, fear, depression and have the power to generally weaken our bodies.  Positive thoughts change the chemistry on the cellular level, which in turn strengthens the body, and leads to high self-esteem and joy.  This is demonstrated by using muscle testing while thinking neutral, then negative, then positive thoughts and feeling the difference in strength of the muscle that is being tested.  The subconscious has no sense of humor or discernment and takes each thought and message as the truth and reinforces it, giving it enduring power. 

Learning positive self-talk is a gentle, consistent process of acknowledging the negative thought, releasing it, and replacing it with its positive aspect.  For example, I’m just not flexible” can be released and replaced with “I am flexible to this point right now” and further developed to “I feel grateful to be this flexible right now.”  The subconscious immediately goes to work to increase flexibility.

Likewise, giving double negative messages like, “Don’t forget” will confuse the subconscious, where a positive message like “Remember” will be integrated more easily and translated into the desired behavior.

Affirmations are written using your full name, a feeling, the positive form of what you are intending, and are stated in the present tense.  For example, “I Janice Baxter, feel content that I am as flexible as possible right now.”  Affirmative statements need to be believable, and realistic enough to be incorporated into rational thinking.

To reinforce positive thoughts, affirmations can be written and posted around the house.  They become stronger as they are repeated out loud and even more powerful when shared with supportive like-minded, like-hearted people.

Another aspect of self-talk is how we react when we have made a mistake, feel fearful, are in a crisis, or are undecided.  The self-affirming response is patient and reassuring.  It is how we would talk to a loved one, a friend, or a child who needs support.

This supportive attitude is then extended to each aspect of the Self and each thought we carry.  Talking to ourselves in a loving way inspires health on the cellular level.  “I am grateful for my healthy body.”  I feel confident that I am doing my best.”  “I am happy that I am communicating honestly and clearly with my Self and loved ones.”  “I feel relaxed as I go deeper into meditation each time.”

When we love and respect ourselves with thoughts and words, we can then offer unconditional regard and acceptance to others and our environment.