Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited by Moderator)
Often I wonder like many people do, if Affirmations really work?
I can argue both sides of the coin on whether they do work.
I have read about how the brain has plasticity and the neural pathways within it can be trained to form neural networks through repetitious thoughts. The neurons connect with like neurons and form a network of like neurons, just like people hang out with other people whom are like themselves.
So it stands to reason that if you use repetitive Affirmations, eventually you will train new networks within your brain.
But how does this work with the Shadow aspect of our personalities? and how does it work with our belief systems?
If I believe I am an awful person, will affirmations work? or will I think them to be a lie?
Also if I choose to use affirmations instead of looking into the Shadow does this mean I am in denial of my Shadow? We already know that if you try to pretend the Shadow doesn't exist, it will wreak havoc on your life.
I am not so sure DENIAL is a good remedy for anything as it is just another lie.
It seems to me I used to be really good at looking at the positive side of things in the past and that didn't solve all my problems, so I have to assume, that Affirmations are only half of the remedy.
We need to know that we are good people. But we cannot deny that we have done bad things and that there is a side of us that we have rejected.
By denying a part of us we cannot be whole.
Often the "bad" things we did are far worse in our mind than what they really are and there are reasons why we adopted certain personality traits and then decided to reject them. Understanding those reasons is a key to understanding yourself.
If one just used Affirmations they would not learn about themselves and this is why I say while Affirmations are good, they are only 1/2 of the equation to Self Improvement.
Shadow traits become blocks in the psyche. I think if we remove the blocks, the Affirmations have a better chance of developing strong roots, otherwise they can be plucked out easily.
If Shadow traits continue to attract not-so-good circumstances to you, affirmations probably won't stick in your mind very well either. They will feel like a lie.
I am a good person - why do all these bad things keep happening?
Shadow work is important for understanding ourselves. If we don't know HOW we got here in the first place, how can we ensure we don't end up back here? This is why history repeats itself.
Something "bad" happens and we try to forget about it without learning the lessons from it first.
Learn the lessons first, then let it go. Otherwise the lesson has to come around full circle again and again until you learn it.
I don't like focusing on bad things, but if denying it means I am doomed to keep repeating it, then I would rather look at it instead of running from it.
Running from things, denial, it's all running from Fear and fear never stops chasing you until you face it.
I propose using both Shadow Work AND Affirmations for Self Improvement.
Also note that doing Shadow Work is a learning tool and will also change neural pathways in the brain.