I don't know...is that true?
That's what I think to myself when I read an affirmation statement like, "I am drawing boundaries to preserve my vitality." Traditionally, people say affirmations out loud to themselves over and over to let the statement kind of simmer into their existence and become true.
However, for me, I realized I use them as a question to challenge how I'm doing in that area of my life. In the example above, I'll say the affirmation, "I am drawing boundaries to preserve my vitality," and scan my body and mind for a knee-jerk reaction that sometimes comes as a hot flash or thought of outrage that I could be saying that about myself.
This is how I know I don't believe it. When I get that red flag, it's an invitation to ask myself if I'd like to make that statement true. If the answer is yes, then I ask what things I could change or shuffle around in my life to start taking steps towards becoming that type of person.
To become the type of person that makes boundaries, that means standing up for what I need. The word "preserve" means to maintain and the word "vitality" means energy. What do I have to do in order to push back against the chaos of life to ensure I have this for myself? For this example in particular, it means communicating with my husband that I'd like to go for a run in the middle of the day. Lately, I feel guilty doing this, because I work from home and I hear him working so hard taking care of the kids, but I really need to make time for it for my mental health. Saying that out loud to him will help me feel that "permission" that... I don't need from him, but more need to give to myself so that the next day I'll actually take action.
Check out the video I made explaining this backwards approach:
I'd love to hear how you use affirmations! There's no right or wrong way. They are a great tool for self-exploration and growth into the future vision that we hold for ourselves!
If you're interested in checking out the affirmation deck I created to challenge myself in this way daily and up level my life, click here.