Some effective communication systems, like those used by the armed forces, employ the word “affirmative” instead of the word “yes.” And that is exactly what an affirmation is: saying “Yes” to something. In a formal debate, the side that upholds the truth of the proposition is called the “affirmative side.” So, when you make an affirmation, you are saying, “Yes, I believe in the truth of this.”
Affirmations, combined with visualizations or mental imaging based on the affirmation statement, are a highly effective way of moving into new situations without anxiety. They can also help you achieve goals of every conceivable kind.
Many professional athletes use affirmation and visualization along with practice to help them play at peak form more often. It’s like the javelin thrower some time ago who had just surpassed his personal best record. He said, “It feels like deja vu. I have seen myself do this so many times before in my mind.” Famously, Michael Jordan did the same thing, imagining perfect free throws in his mind, thousands of times.
You see, his subconscious didn’t know the difference between a vividly imagined throw and the real thing. So, he was training his body to throw perfectly, but he was doing it with his mind. And it was no surprise when he finally did throw perfectly. Imagining a performance actually fires the same neurons (which send signals to the muscles involved) as if it were really happening. It’s using your mind as a rehearsal hall.
Your mind works in the same way in whatever you want to do. If you rehearse the future you want, practicing it over and over in your mind, and see yourself performing it perfectly, you will be dramatically increasing your chances of bringing that future easily and free-flowingly into reality.