“Your body responds to your thoughts, emotions, and actions.” from “Positive Thinking” on Web MD

Everyone knows that positive thinking is good for him or her. If you think negative thoughts then your brain will release chemicals associated with those thoughts.

For example: if you think angry thoughts then chemicals will be released by the brain into your body that make you feel angry. Thinking pleasant thoughts would make you feel good. It’s that simple.

If you think positive thoughts around a habit what you want to change, such as bad eating habits or an addiction such as smoking, then you will develop good habits… and ultimately lose weight and/or quit smoking. In other words, affirmations, around what you want, is a proven method of achieving various kinds of goals.

Sometimes we have a tendency to think more negative thoughts particularly in negative situations, which makes us more stressed out. Learning to refocus our thoughts on a positive perspective not only reduces stress but also makes us more able to deal with the stressful situation we are faced with.

Affirmations are a useful tool that can be used to focus the mind on positive thoughts. Saying “I can handle this situation with a peaceful and alert mind” is a positive affirmation. Or if you get angry then thinking of how this situation has given you an opportunity to become better at releasing anger creates a perspective that is positive in that you gain control of your emotions. You could make up an affirmation for an angry situation like a traffic jam such as “I feel calm in this traffic situation and I have more time to think pleasant thoughts and listen to music”.

These are the rules for phrasing your own affirmations:

Frame your sentences in positive words

If you say “I will not be angry” then your mind is focused on an image of anger. The sentence is framed in the negative. Instead say “I am feeling calm and peaceful” this focuses the mind on the positive state you want to be in and takes you in that direction.

Focus on the present tense

If you focus on your affirmation to be about the here and now it will be more effective. For example: Don’t say “I will feel calm” as it refers to the future. Instead say “I am feeling calm” as it refers to the present.

Be specific and use detail

If you want the muscles in your leg to relax say “The muscles in my leg are getting more and more relaxed”. By specific you affirm exactly what you want. You don’t need to make an affirmation short or long. Just figure out the positive state you want and say it in positive words in as much detail as you like.

Use simple, emotionally stimulating words

By phrasing your affirmations using words that are exciting is more effective than using bland words. For example: you could say “I am feeling more and more relaxed” and it would be effective. You can take the same concept and make it more stimulating by adding more descriptive words and it will be even more effective. For example: “I am feeling calmer and more peaceful with every breath I take making it easier and easier for me to handle any stressful situation with an alert and calm state of mind”

Repeat your affirmations often

By saying affirmations you are focusing your mind on a positive state. However, negative states of mind (or thoughts) have been there longer as we tend to think negative thoughts more. So for an affirmation to work effectively it has to be repeated often so it can take the place of the negative state.

Making affirmations even more effective

Affirmations can be enhanced with meditation and self-hypnosis. Simply by repeating the affirmation while you are practicing a proper meditation technique makes it a tool of self-hypnosis.

“People with positive attitudes generally enjoy life more, but are they any healthier? The answer is often “yes.” Optimism is a resource for healing. Optimists are more likely to overcome pain and adversity in their efforts to improve their medical treatment outcomes.” from “Positive Thinking” on Web MD