We have all heard of positive affirmations, but not very often affirmations don't work. I can say "Today is going to be a beautiful day" but if I don't believe it, then it does not work. Let's look at getting beyond affirmations to take your manifesting and magic to a new level. Explore with us the ancient magic of mantras and the power of reframing. We will also look at the Norse Magic idea of designing future memories. Let's get you out of affirmations that don't work and into these more powerful ways to shift your life. Discover with us ways to get into more gratitude, more joy, and more fulfillment!
Why Affirmations Don't Work?
Affirmations are often "nice thoughts" things that we wish were true. And that is where they stay in wishing. To stand in the place of personal power and command our destiny we must to better than wishing. We must believe, and then take the actions that empower that belief.
Our blog Belief and Manifesting digs into examples of how our emotions and our beliefs are the gas in the car. They provide the driving force that brings our desires toward us. As Chaos Magicians we play with the idea that beliefs are flexible, not permanent. I can pick up one belief today and wear it like a mask until it no longer suits me, then change it for another.
So affirmations don't work because at our core we don't believe them. But how do we build this believing? How do we strengthen the muscle of belief so that our manifestation practices work?
How to Go Beyond Affirmations
Another reason affirmations don't work is they are ungrounded. They focus on hopes, dreams, and allaying fears. They are things that are over there in someday, and therefore always stay someday.
Gratitude grounds us into the present, connects us with what is right now, and from there what is possible.
Building your gratitude practice
Lean into where you already have, or have had success. If you feel like you do not have enough of something, find a time when you did. Remember that feeling and bring it to now. Let's use money for example.
Today I am afraid I don't have enough money. Think of a time when I did have enough, breathe into that feeling. Express gratitude that you have ever know that feeling. Then think about now. No, right now. Do you have enough for the next 10 minutes? Do you have enough for today? If the answer is yes, be grateful for that. The universe has given you time to manifest miracles, and be joyful.
Sit in this joy and use it as evidence for your new mantra "I always have enough money." Look at how this statement is true now (no matter how short that now is). This relaxed grateful state is the perfect place to launch your manifestation process from. You know that your new mantra was true in the past, is true now, and can be true in the future. This is the first step.
The Power of Mantras
Mantras traditionally have been used by several ancient cultures. Some of the oldest ones are written in Sanskrit, one of the ancient languages of creation. They believe that the vibration of these words alone causes the energy around and within you to change.
We have worked with Seed Sounds as one word mantras that create immense change. Our last visit to this topic was our blog, Chakra Healing for Manifestation and Magic. In that discussion we dove into the power of Seed Sounds to affect the energy in your Chakra system. We used them to align your chakras for better manifesting. (totally worth checking out).
We use Mantras in a similar way. These are combinations of words or sounds that you deeply believe will change the air around you, and the energy within you. Our mantras are not simply nice thoughts, but more statements of intention. We are programming our minds and auric fields to resonate to this frequency.
Pro Tip: The wording of your mantra makes a world of difference. Check out how to choose the most effective wording here. The Language of Manifesting.
Programming Your Auric Field
Programming your auric field is a form of mental telepathy. Your Auric field is the area around your body, about the length of your arm, where your energy reaches out to. We can program this energy to "read" a particular way to anyone who comes into contact with it (including ourselves).
So Step 1 was determining the Mantra you are working with right now. One of my favorites is "Only Good Things happen to me." I have already become grateful for this truth, and invested myself in fully believing it. Now to set about locking it in place.
Meditation is the first tool. Sit down and really feel the feeling deeply. Explore your past example, explore your current moment, and then imagine the future where this mantra is true, all of the time. Repeat it to yourself like a chant, and every time you say it, turn the thought over in your head. Explore all the places within you that agree with this, and all the places that disagree. If you find disagreement, resolve it. Often these are inner children with conflicting examples. Talk to them, show them the examples you have chosen, and invite them to imagine the new future with you.
For more help on how to reach your inner children and dissolve their objections check out our book. This is one of my personal favorite types of work. I have found it enormously helpful for freeing yourself from the doubt that kills your manifest ion and magic.
But What if it goes wrong? - The Power of Reframing
I can already hear your inner child screaming. But not always! Bad things happen! Bad things happen to everyone! And this is where reframing becomes our most powerful tool.
Reframing is a term used in NLP (neuro-linguistic programming). What this means is we find different ways to say or think about things. We develop an empowering way to tell the story to ourselves. I don't mean lie or delude yourself, again it only works if you believe it.
We are not changing the facts of what took place; we are looking at the emotions we have attached to those circumstances. We are exploring the decisions our unconscious mind made because this thing happened. Our reframe allows us to tell the story to ourselves in a way that aligns with our mantra. It supports it, provides evidence that our mantra is still true and guiding our reality. It keeps us in the driver's seat, we remain in power of our emotions, and our direction no matter the obstacle.
Even if a lesson hurts, it's a lesson therefore it's a good thing. - "Because only good things happen to me."
This event showed me this and this and this, which I needed to see. Thank you for the opportunity to look. The necessity to stop allowed me to see where I was out of alignment and course correct before I ended in trouble.
Here's how to build your practice
Phase 1 - Write the story
At the end of every day sit down with a journal and write out what happened today. You get to write the story of your day. You get to program how you remember it. The brain science on this is wacky, you get to decide what you remember and what you let go of.
Most of us focus on or hold onto the angry, hurtful, or sour bits. Why? This is like putting muddy jeans back in your drawer to put back on in the morning. Choose to focus on the happy, bright and productive bits. Express gratitude for these rays of sunshine.
Phase 2 - Reframing
Anything that you define as bad, unfortunate or annoying, clean them up. Reframe them.
I masterfully handled a difficult situation at work. Susan came at me with drama and I did not freak out. I choose right now to celebrate my victory and no longer let it affect me. I am proud of myself for my achievement today and next time I will do even better in xxxy way.
Express gratitude for your behavior. Feel the gratitude for how this event proves your mantra is guiding your experiences. Express gratitude for how you can see yourself growing and improving.
If it still bothers you move to:
Phase 3 - Forgiveness
Learning to forgive has been a life journey. Not Susan (from the previous example) she is not important. ME! I forgive me, for disappointing myself, for not handling it as well as I wanted to, for getting angry, for whatever.
Breathe in deeply and hold your breath.
Say inside your head:
"I forgive myself for believing....."
Whatever it is. I forgive myself for believing that Susan's drama has anything to do with me. I forgive myself for believing that I "should" have done better. Or, I forgive myself for believing this was worth holding on to.
Use any or all of these, make up ones that fit your situation. With each one take a new breath and say the words in your head. But here is the Key, do not exhale until you have accepted your apology. Until you BELIEVE yourself.
Again belief is where all of the power is.
Programming Future Memory
In Norse mythology is amazing. That's it, just amazing. But their ideas about time and how it flows are fantastic for the magician to explore. The belief that the past, the present, and the future are all being created at the same time by three different muses. In this model if we change the past it alters the present, and creates new potential futures. (All of this is fascinating and the content for week 3 of our Norse Course on Ritual Magic.)
So if we change the past by reframing it, we change the present by stepping into gratitude for the situation. From these a rainbow of new future choices become available.
When we fill our auric field with our mantra it goes out before us in physical space... in time. When we keep the past clean (reframing and processing) we keep the future available for us to write. We are designing the future with our gratitude for the fact that we KNOW, our mantra will come to pass.
An Example of It All Put Together
I (April) was in a busy market and got pick pocketed. My wallet was stolen, I lost $80 and my bank card.
First I did the normal thing, freak out, retrace my steps, go to the security counter and file a report. Then I took a breath, and started my practice.
I am physically ok. Everything that was taken can be replaced. I can still get home. I am ok, I am grateful that I am ok. Let's go home.
When I got home, I meditated a moment on these circumstances. Why might this have happened to me? What positive lesson am I being shown? Because I BELIEVE my mantra, "Only good things happen to me." So I just need to look hard enough to find where the universe is proving this to me. Somehow I need to find how this is a good thing.
I had done a year of magic establishing my relationship with the spirit of Money. (Learn how to do it for yourself here). I had consecrated seed money that I would keep and grow in my home. This action was to prove that I am safe with money and money is safe with me. Circumstances had arisen that had caused me to spend the money (super grateful I had it!). But I had not replaced it in a timely way like I had promised.
Money is an old god and like many requires a tithe, a token of good faith to get back into good standing. When this realization landed, I was able to reframe my day.
This event showed me the strength of my relationship to Money. My promises must be kept. I am grateful for the strength of this relationship because it means I can make back the lost cash easily.
The physical wallet I lost was cheap and I only meant to use it till I found a good one. Now is the time to turn up my manifestation practice (apparently lol). I am being forced to get a new wallet that I can consecrate to draw more cash toward me. This will strengthen my relationship with Money further and bring more cash into my life.
The amount lost was 8% of what I had promised to keep on hand.... Money is a generous god (Yahweh demands 10%). I am grateful that Money is generous with me.
How it turned out
By the end of the night I had restored my belief in my mantra "Only good things happen to me." I had designed my future - More money is coming toward me. I was able to sleep easily having released all of the stress of the experience.
The next day I called my card company and got a replacement sent out to me. (They offered to mail it to me internationally at no charge!)
2 weeks later I got a raise at my job that covered the loss in one week.
I am actively looking for the new wallet to consecrate and build my money magic even stronger.
Beyond Affirmations - Mantras, Reframing, and Designing Future Memory
These practices have very literally changed my life. I am able to recover from life events and manifest more powerfully than ever before. I hope you can see now how much deeper a practice this is and why just affirmations don't work. It's not complicated, it's just not easy to start out with. But as you build your practice it is totally worth it.
If I say my mantras aloud to people, they look at me weirdly. They sound outlandish, but the way I said it.... sounds like I believe them. Because I do.
Some of my favorites to try on:
"I am very lucky."
"I always get a parking spot."
"Only good things happen to me."
"I am beautifully supported by the universe, one of the most well-supported people I know!"
Usually I don't even need to say these things because they are ringing in my auric field. Everyone who comes into contact with me already knows that they are true, because I do.
This practice is truly magical and has had miraculous results in my life over and over again. I am so happy to have been able to share it with you.
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