PEOPLE OFTEN ASK ME, “What are affirmations and how can I use them?” An affirmation is any statement that we make—whether positive or negative. If affirmations are used consistently, they become beliefs and will always produce results, sometimes in ways that we cannot even imagine.

I’ve always said, “Life is simple. What we give out, we get back.” We can say out loud or think to ourselves one affirmation all day long, such as All is well, over and over and over. Or we can have a list of 20 affirmations and just say or write one each day. The number of times that we say or write an affirmation is really up to each individual.

When we concentrate on these affirmations and start to change our way of thinking, our inner voice immediately reacts to these new thoughts in one of two ways: with fear or with love. If we sense fear, then we need to say to ourselves, “Thank you for sharing. This is a thought that I’ll be sending you many times, so get used to it!” It’s as if our mind is a filing cabinet and these thoughts are new folders that we’re placing in it.

This is the moment when you’re either enjoying or not enjoying your life. What you’re feeling now is creating your tomorrows. Isn’t that a wonderful thing to know? You are in charge of your life!  

You don’t have time to waste on negative thinking because it only creates more of what you say you don’t want. If you’re doing positive affirmations and you’re not getting the results you want, then check to see how often during the day you allow yourself to feel bad or upset. These emotions are exactly what’s delaying the manifestation of your affirmations and stopping the flow of your good.

We live in an ever-expanding, unlimited Universe. The possibilities available to us are far beyond what our human minds can imagine. The only thing that ever limits us is our thinking. We waste our thoughts thinking of limitations. Our thoughts are so precious. Every thought we think is creating our future. Every thought! 

Each time we think a thought that makes us feel bad in any way, it’s a wasted thought. Not only have we wasted an opportunity to think a positive thought and create a great life for ourselves, we’ve added to the pile of negative thoughts that bring uncomfortable experiences to us.

Each thought is precious. We can learn to think in positive affirmations. Yes, it takes a bit of doing to gain control over our thoughts; however, the rewards are tremendous. The past has no power over us. Even problems have no power over us. Our power lies in the thoughts that we choose to think today. Remember, there are endless opportunities for good before us.

We can think happy thoughts. We can think positive thoughts. We can say, “Yes, I can do it!”  We can think thoughts that make us feel joyous. We can learn to think only about all the good in the world. We can lift our thoughts up. We can greet the day with a smile. We can let the world know that we’re happy to be alive. We can express gratitude at every turn. We can love our bodies. We can be our best friend. By our actions, we’ll be an example for our children. Just by watching us, they’ll learn how to create a happy and fulfilling life.

Our reward is that we get to watch day by day as our lives turn into the most joyous, loving, healthy, prosperous, fabulous experiences. And this will last for all the rest of our days on Earth. So train yourself to think thoughts that make you feel good. That way, you’ll always be creating your life out of joy and in joy. Joy always brings more to be joyous about.

Affirm: I am the only thinker in my mind; and I choose to think joyous, happy, loving, positive thoughts 24/7. I love Life and Life loves me.

Louise Hay, the author of the international bestseller You Can Heal Your Life, is a metaphysical lecturer and teacher with more than 50 million books sold worldwide. For more than 30 years, she has helped people throughout the world discover and implement the full potential of their own creative powers for personal growth and self-healing. She has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show and many other TV and radio programs both in the U.S. and abroad.