Whether you’re feeling depressed, have low self-esteem or are experiencing a series of momentary setbacks that mean your mood could use boosting, you might want to consider turning to positive mantras. Also known as positive mantras affirmations, they can change the way you think and in turn, allow a happier life to unfold.
These uplifting words and phrases can be said aloud, read on an as-needed basis or even written down whenever the mood strikes; all ways are effective methods of reinforcing positivity. Ideally, the phrases are repetitive, as such an impactful technique is said to really drive the message home. While some people are said to repeat favorite positive mantras thousands of times, many say that a handful of times each day works just fine. Even simply subjecting yourself to the words you have written down on a sticky note posted on your laptop can even do the trick.
Thoughts can change brain activity: make them happy ones!
For those who think positive mantras are a bit ludicrous—something reserved for the eccentric or for those summoning their inner hippie—it’s important to kick that notion to the curb. The power of mantras is actually rooted in science; experts say that every single thought creates chemical reactions in the body that can alter the brain. This means you have the power to put your physical, spiritual and mental health on a path towards happiness. You can wipe out bad emotions and lead a happier life simply by turning to inspirational mantras as soon as negative thoughts come into play.
Of course, in order for these mantras to be truly effective, they must be more than popular clichés of the day or words spewed forth from the celebrity of the moment. Those that create happiness transcend humorous memes or fad phrases; instead, they should be ones created by you that work for you to achieve the desired outcome.
While generic mantras like “This too shall pass” and “Life’s short—you only live once,” are positive, there are better ways to create happiness. By making mantras personal, you are honing in on specific areas in your life that are bringing you down, tailoring your thoughts and creating a favorable, meaningful shift away from negativity.
How to make positive mantras work for you
Suppose, for example, you’re bummed out because of a job loss and are continually beating yourself up over a specific work incident. Create phrases that address the past problem, but in a way that reminds you not of being let go, but of how proficient you really are. “I’m a confident, creative professional” or “I’m an expert and I deserve respect in the workplace” may be positive mantras worth exploring. In other words, choose mantras that reflect the quality you hope to weave into your mind. Ultimately, it will become a part of your everyday consciousness, and—before you know it—you’ll be flooded with positivity and happiness on a regular basis.
Another idea is to create positive mantras that put you in a desired state of mind, rather than merely expressing the hope to one day be there. Instead of saying, “I don’t want to be sad anymore” (which has elements of negativity in and of itself) you might say, “I’m always in a happy frame of mind.” Remember how the body reacts chemically to your thoughts—saying what you want by expressing that you’re already there can create feelings that place you in that happier spot.
This approach is even recommended for people who want to stop smoking. Rather than turning to a mantra such as, “I don’t crave cigarettes” (a good mantra), a person in that circumstance might say, “I’m smoke-free” (a better, more future-envisioning mantra). Identify what it is that will make you happier, and develop a few words that immediately place you that more uplifting mood.
Listening to pleasant songs and viewing uplifting words on social media are certainly helpful, but creating a life of happiness on a regular basis requires focusing on your specific issues and goals. Once you identify where your negativity comes from by noticing repeating thought patterns, create positive affirmations that work to squash those thoughts and all circumstances tied to them.
A rude neighbor or relative always bringing you down? Consider telling yourself, “I am a kind person and feel great about myself.” Keep replaying heartbreak from years ago? “Love surrounds me” or “Trust and love are always by my side” may be mantras that put you on a positive track. Find the ones that work best for you in your particular situation, repeat (or look at) them often, and you’ll soon be feeling significantly happier.