When I was about 23, I moved to Hackney to live with my sister and two friends. I’d finished studying English at Sussex and was writing articles for a local paper while working nights at a club in Camden.
My on/off relationship with a personal trainer had at last come to an end, which was very much for the best, as he was a disaster. But he’d left me with one positive thing: an interest in running.
So now, living on the edge of London Fields, I decided to try going out on my own each morning and run once around the park. It only took about five minutes, which was my limit back then.
(When trying to train me, that ex-boyfriend had taken me for five-mile runs – too much for a beginner).
I’d get up around 7am, jog around the park, go home to stretch and shower then have a coffee before going out to interview artists for my local newspaper.
Around that time, I’d developed an interest in manifesting and the law of attraction after reading The Secret. I’d met a guy who had upgraded his entire life using that book and I wanted to do the same.
But for me, it wasn’t about material wealth, it was about feeling more confident, falling love with someone lovely and getting a place on a journalism Masters course.
So as I ran around the park, I started repeating a mantra to help make those things come into fruition.
I’d say something like: I am a confident, attractive and successful journalist.
(The ‘attractive’ part makes me cringe now, but at the time – newly single – it was important to feel attractive in order to meet someone new).
I’d say this on repeat, imagining what my new partner may be like, what steps I’d need to take to get onto a journalism course and actually starting to feel that confidence.
Within months, I’d met my new boyfriend (an actually nice one – I married him). Got a place on the Masters degree course. And I felt more confident within myself.
Now, my mantras and affirmations look a bit different.
In the lead-up to an event- speaking on a panel, for instance – I might say:
- I’m amazing at public speaking
- I can hold the room’s attention when I’m on stage
- I speak calmly and confidently
And for more general life, I’ll have a more general mantra. Here’s one screenshotted from my reminders today, that I set to go off every few hours:
Mantras and affirmations aren’t the key to turning your life around but they help you to replace negative, limiting thoughts with positive ones.
And this then empowers you to believe more in yourself, and your potential.
Do you use mantras and affirmations?