Affirmations are a very powerful tool for managing stress. I now use them on a regular basis and teach them regularly to clients. I find that affirmations really work in changing the internal dialogue around and creating an internal environment of peace and well-being.

But I didn't always feel this way...

No, to be honest I think I really disliked affirmations for quite a long time.

The first time I came across affirmations, I felt very inspired, but pretty quickly the enthusiasm wore off and I gave them up as not working.

I was working in London at the time and was commuting across the city. I had just started to meditate and was feeling the benefits of this practice immensely.

I wanted to learn more, so started to read lots of self-help books. One such book had a chapter on affirmations and so I started to say affirmations to myself regularly.

And for a period of time, I felt really inspired - I thought, "Wow, these are great - they really make me feel good!"

And in the commute across London, I would either meditate or practice my affirmations.

But after a time, I felt that they stopped working and so stopped using them. I felt disappointed and let down and so would tell people, "Oh, affirmations - they don't work..."

Roll forward several years. I living in a Buddhist monastery at the time. I was a novice monk and was living a renunciate life - celibate, no TV, no food after midday, no radio, no internet, no music, no alcohol...

I was going through a few challenges - okay quite a lot of challenges - I think the common terminology is a breakdown.

I started to try everything under the sun to overcome my challenges. I didn't have the access to other distractions so I had to find some form of positive solution.

I think I must have tried out a ton of different techniques (I think I could write a book about all the things I learned to do there! Actually the book is almost finished... I will let you know when I have finished it.)

But one technique in particular was suggested by the Abbot.

He said, "Have you ever thought about using affirmations?"

"They don't work," I replied (I was really stubborn at the time and would refuse most people's help!)

"Well, they work for me," said the Abbot, "Try them."

And, of course, being in the space that I was at the time, I declined using them. I didn't need affirmations. I could just suffer in silence!

Looking back I have to laugh at how stubborn I was and at how much patience the Abbot and the monks had with me - wow!

But after a period of time I started to use these affirmations...

"This too will pass..."

"I will get through this..."

"I am doing magnificently well..."

And when I remembered to use them, they would help to shift me from the really dark spaces I sometimes inhabited.

Did they heal me?

Did they help my stresses and strains?

Yes, they did, affirmations and the other techniques I share in my book.

So try some out now... Repeat to yourself...

"I am well..."

"I am balanced and calm..."

Even if you don't feel this is the case. Say it anyhow - it will start to reprogram your mind for the positive.

Next week I will share with you how I used these affirmations working for one of the top companies in the world. How I managed to cope with a huge workload in a new company.

In the meantime, I recommend you take a look at Think Right Now's website. They use affirmations over 60 beats per minute music which has been proven to reprogram the mind, quicker and with better results.

Affirmations are a tool to help you cope with the stresses and strains of modern - use them...

Affirmations CDs & Free Downloads

Take care of yourself and be well,

Piers Cross