Of course, you’ve heard of Affirmations, those statements of intent that you repeat throughout the day to try to impress the positive statement upon your conscious mind. An example, might be “I am creating abundance in every area of my life.” These statements can be helpful when you’re trying to change a long-standing belief, which is contrary to what you now know is true. They also can be helpful in changing worn-out habits or in turning your attention toward the positive aspects of the things you already have in your life, which you’re just trying to enhance a bit.
Shakti Gawain wrote the classic book on Affirmations and visualization, “Creative Visualization,” and it’s enormously helpful in recommending ways to craft positive statements that you can use to try to change your thinking. I do like Affirmations; and they can work, sometimes.
One of the major premises, however, of my e-book and course, “How to Allow” (and why I created a different daily ritual), is that it is sometimes difficult to have faith in affirmative statements such as “I am fit and healthy and at my perfect weight,” when you’re twenty pounds overweight. Instead of actually creating the image in your mind of your ideal vision (twenty pounds lighter), you tend to actually reinforce the fact that you need to lose that weight. This doesn’t have to be the case, of course, and some people are able to suspend thoughts about the current reality enough to get great shifts in their vibration by using affirmations. It depends upon the individual, their beliefs, and the wording of the affirmation. When you’re very close to believing that you can actually attain something and your affirmation doesn’t go too far away from where you currently find yourself, affirmations, especially when combined with visualization, can be a great way of raising your vibration and achieving your goals.
That said, I’ve seen too many people try to use affirmations, and really do no more than reinforce the situation they’d like to change, as they just don’t have enough faith in their desired outcome or their ability to line up their vibration, for the affirmation to really work.
Several years ago, I read a book by Noah St. John and Denise Berard, called “The Great Little Book of Afformations.” I was curious about the title and apparently deliberate misspelling of “Affirmations,” and the first chapter roped me in. St. John described himself as someone who had always posted lots of affirmations around the room to make himself feel better, things like, “I am happy, health and wealthy,” and “I am good enough.” He realized that he had been saying the positive statements to himself for years but still didn’t believe them. He had an epiphany one day (in the shower!) where he realized that the human brain is always asking and looking for answers to questions. A simple question followed:
“If human thought is really the process of asking and searching for answers to questions, why are we going around making statements we don’t believe?”
St. John went on to create the concept of the “Afformation,” which is posed in the form of a question rather than an affirmative statement, and has helped tens of thousands of people to achieve incredible results.
My intent here is not to provide a complete roadmap for using Afformations; I’d recommend you check out some of St. John’s materials for a wealth of suggestions on effective Afformations. (His books and other materials are available at SuccessClinic.com.) I would like simply to give you the basis for using Afformations as a tool to have in your arsenal when Allowing might not be happening easily. For me, often they are just the trick for getting back into my vortex, especially if I’m finding it hard to focus on the positive aspects of a situation.
For example, you’re lying in bed and the events of the day, which haven’t been that great, are running through your mind. Or you’re trying to get back into your Vortex after being knocked out by something that has occurred and the way you’ve thought about it. I’ve found that Afformations can be just the thing to help you to get out of the cycle of negative thoughts attracting other negative thoughts. They can take you back in the direction you want to go pretty easily.
What St. John discovered is that it’s actually much easier to overcome negative beliefs by using questions. Of course, these will be empowering questions, rather than disempowering questions. As St. John explains, and why this works so well for so many people, is that empowering questions lead you to the truth of Who You Really Are. For example, if you asked yourself, “Why am I so successful?” when perhaps you don’t feel that you are that successful yet, you remember that in your vibrational escrow you already are successful. The Universe is just waiting for you to line up with that success vibrationally so that you can pull it into your life experience. So, when you ask the question, “Why am I so successful?” you can sincerely believe in the truthfulness of it and look forward to the Universe demonstrating it with improved conditions which will show you your success.
One Afformation I’ve mentioned in a prior post is to ask the Universe, “Why is it so easy, and becoming easier?” Then you leave it up to the Universe to provide the answer. You can imagine all sorts of other Afformations that you could create that reflect your desires, such as “Why am I so happy?” or “Why is my bank account growing so rapidly?” or “Why do I have such great relationships in my life?” It’s very cool to know that the Universe is actually working to supply the answers to those questions for you.
You will really be surprised, at least I was, at how easy it is to ask these questions and talk yourself into a better feeling place from where you were before. It’s a way to improve your vibration, get into your Vortex with your completed desires, and to actually create the answer you’re seeking in your physical reality.
I haven’t done the subject justice in this short post, but hope you’ll check out St. John’s books and website dedicated to Afformations. The notion of Afformations is brilliant and they are a great tool in practicing “How to Allow.”
This is a fascinating post. I read it this morning and just re-read it.
“Afformations” is catchy with the spelling :).
This part resonated with me: “When you’re very close to believing that you can actually attain something and your affirmation doesn’t go too far away from where you currently find yourself, affirmations, especially when combined with visualization, can be a great way of raising your vibration and achieving your goals.”
This part of saying things but not “believing” them yet sounds familiar.
I love the idea of “empowering questions”… it seems they have answers we need. I also find “tools in the arsenal” a great concept :). It is a constant process and I love your phrasing about “in your vibrational escrow you already are successful. The Universe is just waiting for you to line up with that success vibrationally so that you can pull it into your life experience.”
Great post and you did the subject lots of justice!! Lots to think about… why do I have an amazing partner that I never would have expected right before we met up again in life? why do I keep getting promotions and raises not even requested? Why did 3 students in a row go out of their way to come to my office and say how much my class meant and give me a hug at the end of the semester?
I always wish someone would ask Abraham what this article covered. After all, they have a book called Ask and It Is Given. But there didn’t seem to be much in the way of actual asking in the book. Or I’m really missing something.
Here’s a website that goes into greater depth than St. John does concerning question affirmations: http://www.creativequestions.com/free-resources/free-resources.html
Thank you for the link. I will check it out. My take on this as to Abraham is that we don’t even need to actually “ask.” We are constantly looking around and having thoughts of “Oh, I like that,” or “that could be better. I’d really like that or more of that.” By simply having those thoughts we are completing the asking process. Then the Universe responds to our request. Our only work is to line up with the solution that has already been created. I think Afformations are just an interesting tool for putting a positive energy and expectation out there on a particular desire and, by asking it in the form of a question, we eliminate the doubt that might be included in an Affirmation, where we haven’t yet mustered enough belief that we can have it. Hope this helps. Happy Thanksgiving! Susan
Thank you Susan, it does help in my understanding.
I’m starting to use afformations and other question-affirmations And when I only concentrate on the question and not the answers, I seem to get a very interesting visualization process going on. That’s my experience, anyway.
Just a quick question— could you ask the same type of empowering question beginning with “how”, instead of “why”? Such as, “How did I find my beautiful home?” or “How did I find this great opportunity to increase my abundance?” Would that work, do you think? Thanks!!!
It may seem subtle but there is definitely a vibrational difference between asking why and asking “how”? It would depend upon the person asking the question, of course, but when we ask How we often let our thoughts wander to “how is this actually going to happen?” When we think about having our desire, purely, without wondering how it’s going to happen and leave that to the Universe and our inspired action, we create what we want. I hope that’s helpful.
Do you say the afformations out loud, or just in your mind? If you do both, do you see any difference between the two?
Thanks and regards
What really matters is what you actually believe and how you feel when you are using them! I find it helpful to use writing for changing my mindset as it makes the process very focused and solid. Yet for some, saying them aloud or in your head could work just as well.
Thanks I appreciate your insights. It’s just that, whenever I try a new self-development idea, it seems to work for a very short while, and things go back to “normal”, or seem to get worse. I guess we shouldn’t stop trying different things, though.
I understand your feeling that new tools seem to work at first and then things go back to “normal.” The afformations, like many other tools can work really well, depending upon your mindset when you are using them. And, I’ve found that even very good tools can begin to feel like “work” after we’ve been using them for a while. So, even the best tools do need to be used in the best way, that is, when we are feeling good while we are using them. And, we can always come back to them. If you’ve read my book, How to Allow, you’ll see that I suggest two Daily Tools that work amazingly well. I still use them when I want to adjust my vibration. Yet, I don’t actually use the Daily Tool writing process every day. I switch gears and use one of the many other tools in my toolkit. So, please don’t feel discouraged if something works well and then becomes less effective. You just need to think about another tool that would feel good in the current situation and use that. And, then you can come back to what seems to work well! I hope this is helpful. Please feel free to contact me directly from my site or at email@example.com if you’d like more support.