Your mental health can have a huge impact on your quality of life. The mental state you are in can affect how you feel, think, and act. When people get into a negative rut or are dealing with depression and anxiety, their self-talk tends to be repetitive and pessimistic. Oftentimes, this self-talk is negative and only bringing them further and further into a rut. This is why positive affirmations for mental health are a tool that has proven to help many people.
One way to combat this tendency to repeat negative things is by making time each day to say positive affirmations out loud to yourself. When making time each day to say these affirmations, you will begin noticing how your attitude will shift from negative to positive. Having a positive outlook on life, conquering your day, or just getting out of bed in the morning will become much easier tasks.
What are Positive Affirmations?
Positive affirmations are positive phrases or statements used to challenge negative and unhelpful thoughts. By using these positive phrases, you can alter the way in which your mind processes information. Furthermore, changing how you think about yourself and the world around you.
Just like with practicing other mental health therapy exercises, you will have to put in the work. Implement these affirmations into your morning routine and really allow these words to sink in. Use positive affirmations to help motivate yourself, encourage positive changes in your life, or boost your self-esteem. It is easy to get stuck in a negative mindset, especially about how we view ourselves and our life. However, getting in the habit of combatting these negative thoughts with positive ones will set the tone for your day and how you carry yourself.
The Science Behind Positive Affirmations for Mental Health
One of the first social psychologists to first propose the theory of self-affirmations was Claude Steele. His theory of self-affirmation involves the notion that although people try to maintain specific self-images (such as “being a good student” or “being a good family member”), they are not their primary motivation. Rather, individuals are motivated to maintain global self-integrity, a general perception of their goodness, virtue, and efficacy.
Specifically, when we try to affirm ourselves and maintain our positive self-esteem in the face of mental health issues such as depression or anxiety, this mental state is called “self-affirmation.”
Below are some examples of daily affirmations that you can start using to improve your mental health and attitude.
“I Love Myself for Who I Am”
When we have negative thoughts about ourself it is easy for this to transition into negative self-talk. We begin to tell ourselves that we aren’t good-looking enough, smart enough, or friendly enough. Instead of focusing on what you think isn’t good about yourself, focus on loving yourself for who you are right now.
Yes, you might plan to improve your appearance, lose weight, make more friends and take classes but if you do not love yourself regardless of your current circumstances it will make a difference in how you feel.
“My Diagnosis Does Not Define Me”
When people are diagnosed with mental health disorders they tend to think of themselves as a diagnosis. This is especially true for mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. This is because individuals may be more likely to self-stigmatize than other mental illness diagnoses that do not have the same negative connotation associated with them.
Rather than thinking about yourself as a mental illness that you have, try thinking about yourself as a strong individual who has mental health issues. See your mental health disorder as something difficult to deal with but also recognize what strengths you gain from it.
“I Am Strong and Capable”
Many mental health disorders cause us to feel weak and mentally exhausted. We begin thinking that we can’t handle things, or even worse start believing that people will not want to help us because they think we are too broken. It is easy to believe that you are unfixable and not strong or capable to conquer your illness.
Try focusing on your mental state try focusing more so on the positive aspects of yourself as a person. Recognize what strengths you have, whether mental or physical. Remember that everyone has both positive and negative qualities. However, focusing on the good will help improve your mental health in the long run.
“I Am Worthy of Love and Happiness”
We all want to be loved and feel happy in our lives. However, mental health disorders can cause us to think that we aren’t worthy of love or happiness due to the stigma surrounding mental illness. Many people suffering from mental illness close themselves off to love because they don’t think it will last. Or, they believe they will mess it up due to their diagnosis.
Try repeating this positive affirmation every day: “I am worthy of love and happiness.” Reminding yourself of your value will help you to feel better about yourself and open your mental health up for love.
“How I Feel Matters”
When mental health disorders are present it can be easy to feel like you don’t matter. Negative thoughts and feelings seem overwhelming. This feeling makes the person suffering from mental illness think that they do not deserve any help or care.
Instead of thinking about yourself as a burden on others, try picturing yourself as someone who is strong enough to ask for help. Know that you are not a burden and your feelings, and what you are going through matter. People want to see you succeed and care about you, as well as your feelings and struggles.
“I Choose to Forgive and Let Go of Anger”
Anger can take over our mental state when someone has hurt us in the past. If you are struggling with a mental illness, sometimes anger turns on like a switch. It can feel unbearable and seem like no one understands. Instead of focusing on that anger, tell yourself it is going to be okay. Remind yourself that forgiveness is the first step towards peace and happiness.
“I Will Come Through This Challenge With a Better Understanding of Myself”
There is no mental health challenge that does not teach us something about ourselves. Instead of focusing on the negative aspects, try to focus on what you are gaining from this experience. Focus on things like self-discovery and new perspectives. Remind yourself that even though this is so hard and so difficult, you are going to get through this.
Try using any of these positive affirmations for your mental health or others that suit you best. Watch how your mindset and attitude on life will begin changing just from a few positive words.
Are You Struggling with Your Mental Health?
If you or a loved one are struggling with mental health and are ready to get help, visit Harm Reduction Center in South Florida. So many are struggling with mental illness and don’t know how to seek help. The good news is, Harm Reduction Center is here to help you every step of the way with individualized treatment and aftercare. We know that every day can be a battle and we are here to help you reclaim your life.