Campus Column: Positive Affirmations


Nicolette Noce, Campus Editor

Recently, I’ve found myself in a downward spiral of negative thinking (yuck). 

With a lot going on academically, personally and globally, it is hard to stay positive. I found myself thinking, “The world is so messed up,” “Society is a disaster,” “What’s wrong with me?” “I’m not good enough,” “I can’t do this” and a whole array of thoughts that exhibit negative feelings for the world around me and myself.

 These thought patterns are destructive and ultimately untrue. As an individual, I am well aware of the power negative thoughts can have on my life, and they can even be linked to health issues. With negative thinking comes stress and anxiety, which can trigger a weakened immune system and an overall poor quality of life. Based on my experience, the best way to combat a negative thought is to replace it with a positive one. Positive affirmations are also a form of positive thinking.

 Affirmations are uplifting, and when practiced daily, they can lead to a higher sense of self-worth and self-love. We can be our own worst enemy, and many of us practice negative self-talk that can sound like, “I am so dumb, why did I make that mistake?” or, “I handled that situation horribly, which makes me a bad person.” None of those thoughts are beneficial, helpful or even true. 

 Practicing positive self-talk can lead to peace, relieve stress and improve one’s outlook on the world. In order to free myself from negative thoughts, feelings and responses, I generally try to use positive affirmations to reaffirm who I am. For example, when I find myself cynical about the world or people around me, I think about how the world is a beautiful place filled with perfectly wonderful people. Everyone is navigating their own journey and doing the best they can.

 When I feel afraid, upset or threatened, I try to remember that I am safe, and my negative feelings will not last. Sometimes, I even remind myself that I am happy, and I love myself. Now I know this can all seem very silly, but I promise you this works. When I wake up in the morning, I set the tone for my day by simply saying, “Today is a wonderful day full of opportunities, and I am going to have a good day.” I also like to offer gratitude for the new day by thanking it for arriving. 

 The more you practice positive affirmations towards yourself, the easier it becomes. Practice thinking these thoughts and then saying them out loud. The most powerful type of positive affirmations is “I am” statements. When you affirm who you are, you energetically send that belief into the universe, making it true. 

Here’s one I love: “I am a perfect human being, who is growing and learning. I am loved by the universe, and everything around me is wonderful.” Even if everything around me is not wonderful, practicing positive thinking changes my outlook, and soon, my reality too. 

 I encourage you to make an “I am” statement right now and to continue practicing these thought patterns until it becomes second nature. Throughout life, we learn to think negatively, but imagine what the world would look like if every day people woke up and said, “I am love, and today I will practice loving everyone I interact with, even if they disagree with me or disappoint me.” 

 Your mindset can change the world and prompt an awakening of our social consciousness. You can lead by example until others begin to realize how beneficial these practices can be. Go first, notice a change, and others will follow.