Closed Loop Affirmations – Train Your Brain

Affirmations are great except when they don’t work…

Closed Loop Affirmations logoThe reason is that traditional affirmations are typically done passively and their effectiveness is based on 1) how receptive your subconscious mind is to the particular affirmation along with 2) the emotion with which the affirmation is spoken.

In addition, if the affirmation is for something you have never had before, then there are probably some limiting beliefs that have prevented you from already achieving the affirmation.

All of this lack of effectiveness is often compounded by a passive attitude on the part of the person doing the traditional affirmation.  Maybe it was from the “Law of Attraction” or watching the movie, “The Secret”, but many people think that “things will just come to them.”  The general public just loves the idea of getting something without any effort but the true key to changing your situation in life is the action you take toward your goals and your thoughts that are focused on your desired outcome.

Then, how do I make Affirmations work for me?

Putting aside the drawback, let’s recognize that traditional Affirmations are a good first step, even if they do not go far enough to always get results.  The Affirmation Creation Process helps you clarify your vision for the future as you write your affirmations.  This is a critical first step towards achieving your potential and it will help bring your actions and plans into sharper focus.Affirmations - Action = Nothing

Having said that, it should be noted that Affirmations without Action equals Nothing.  No Change.  So, if Action is the next step, how do I make it happen?  How do I make it happen even if I haven’t had luck in the past?

If you are like most of us, your brain has been trained to look for the easy way, the shortcut or just about anything besides making a plan and sticking to the actions required to make it happen.  What if we could train your brain to find an easy way … by getting excited about discovering a plan and taking action?  That is where the Closed Loop Affirmations(TM) process comes in.

How is the Closed Loop Affirmation process
better than simple, spoken Affirmations?

Closed Loop Affirmations add a key feedback loop to your brain.  It can reinforce the affirmations and use existing subconscious programming / beliefs to move you in the direction of your goals.  Simple, spoken Affirmations are fine but they are more like “wishes” while Closed Loop Affirmations are like commands that get your brain trained to find opportunities you might have missed or motivate you to take action where you might have stayed on the sidelines in the past.

How do I use Closed Loop Affirmations?

(1) First thing in the morning, write down your affirmation(s) when you get up.  If this is the first time you are doing Closed Loop Affirmations, you might want to limit your affirmations to a single affirmation or just two or three.  It takes time to write down each affirmation and you don’t want to dilute your focus when you are getting started.

Why write them down?  Studies have shown that writing down your affirmations helps reinforce them within your nervous system just like writing notes in a class helps reinforce the ideas being taught.Closed Loop Affirmations Worksheet

If you want to use the Closed Loop Affirmation Worksheet, click on the picture to the right and sign up for our Affirmations email list.  You will get a copy of the PDF file (CLA-worksheet-2015) which you can print out and use to write your Affirmations.

(2) Recite the affirmations you just wrote.  Saying them out loud builds another pathway into your brain for the affirmations.  It is similar to hearing someone else say the words… your brain has to process them and integrate the meaning of the words as part of the listening/decoding part of the brain.

Set aside your Closed Loop Affirmations worksheet and go about your day.  You may notice that there will be times in your day that you notice a bit of progress toward the realization of your affirmation(s).  More about that in the paragraph below.

(3) Right before going to bed, review your Closed Loop Affirmation worksheet that you filled out in the morning.  As you look at and read each affirmation that you wrote down, think of any observations of progress that you might have noticed during the day.  Write down any actions you took, ideas you thought of, or any events that took place which moved you closer toward your affirmation.

The key is to look for progress, no matter how small.  As you do this for 30, 60, 90 days you will find that even though you might not make huge strides to your goal, there is almost always some small step in the right direction… and these steps will add up.

Eventually you may have to revise you affirmation to take it “to another level” or even replace it with something more amazing, more energizing or more challenging.

(4) Finally, jot down a note of gratitude for the day.  It can be related to your primary affirmation(s) or just something good that happened.  Gratitude is like the emotional cement that binds your Affirmations into your subconscious mind so it is important to feel grateful for your life.

(Bonus)   If you have any ideas be sure to record them as well so you can refer to them again in the morning.  This way your conscious mind can let them go so you get a good night’s sleep.  [Refer to GRM-Sleep Solutions for ways to solve problems while you sleep.}

 What questions do you have about Closed Loop Affirmations?

Leave a comment below with your results, ideas or feedback.  Or you could join our email list and get the latest news about how to change your life by taking control of your own brain.  Closed Loop Affirmations are just one tool that d.Mark “Dave” Wheeler has developed to help you fight the conditioning your brain has been exposed to by society, the media and even your friends & family.  We encourage you to sign up for our email list so you can stay at the leading edge when it comes to keeping your mind in tip top shape.

How To “5Star Goal Setting & Getting”

5 star Goal Setting and GettingI wrote an article recently about “5 Star Goal Setting & Getting” as a guest blogger over on gps-SpeakerMarketing.com (check it out) but I reserved the ideas that follow for my own readers.  Take a look at the ideas below and leave a comment to tell me if you think they will take your goal setting (and getting) to a whole new level !

1) Start small when Goal Setting.

It is more important to develop the habit of goal setting and getting than it is to go for the biggest goal you can imagine.  Certainly there is some excitement when you “reach for the brass ring” but setting and achieving goals will give you the confidence to actually tackle your larger goals.

In addition, smaller goals can lead to bigger goals.  You might find that once you meet a certain goal that the larger goal no longer excites you and you can make adjustments along the way.

2) Grow your goals.

Build on your successes and learn from your failures.  As you strive to expand your goals, the skills you learn on smaller goals will help you on the way to bigger and bigger goals.

3) Celebrate and enjoy your success.

Goal setting adds a clear cut sense of a black and white to what is usually a long road of gray.  Life is a journey and we often forget to celebrate our accomplishments when we are caught up in the process and focused on the goal on the horizon.

Finally, rely on motivation, not self-discipline.

A good goal is exciting when you set it.  You can envision it happening and it fills you with anticipation of its completion.  The problem is most people do not hold themselves to that standard of motivation and they set goals that do not get them excited.

Think about it …

If your goal does not motivate you now, how likely is it that your motivation is going to carry you all the way to completion?  Self-discipline is a wonderful thing, but it is a limited resource and if you start using it up right from the start, there won’t be enough “gas in the tank” to get you to your destination.  Save your self-discipline for the times along the way when you encounter stumbling blocks or obstacles and have to put in an extra effort.

Set your first goal … and go for it !

Goal Setting Bonus !

As an added bonus, I’ve created a downloadable free pdf 5 Star-GoalSetting-handout that I use for my 5Star Goal Setting & Getting workshops.  (Right-click highlighted text in the previous sentence and select “Save As” to download the pdf worksheet to your computer).  If you want to learn more about what each star represents, be sure to read my guest blogger article over at gps-speakermarketing.com/goal-setting/.

 

Vision Board for 2010 … and beyond

I attended Angela Lussier’s “Sweatpants & Dreams” Vision Board workshop on Saturday, Jan. 9th in Granby, MA. Below is a video showing pictures from the event and some of the results by attendees ….

It was a great experience that I highly recommend for everyone. There were a TON of different magazines there … many of which I would probably never purchase at a newstand… but they still had some good pictures or headlines that I could incorporate into my vision board.

The event ran from 10-12 and I’m sure that if lunch was provided instead of the breakfast (which was excellent, by the way), I suspect that people would have stayed until 2 or 4pm to complete their vision board.

For me, I got a ton of pictures but did not have time to create a board so I did that over the weekend at home. Below is a picture of my vision board…

In the picture, you can see my bulletin board on the right side where I have some of pictures I created for the header banner of this blog. (I figured I would leave them on the bulletin board instead of incorporating them into the vision board.)

Emotional Connection:
One of the ideas that I learned at Angela’s workshop was from the speaker in the video, Dana, who said that the pictures don’t have to be perfect representations of what you want in your vision but rather can just have an emotional connection to you. I found that that idea opened up the range of pictures that I could use and the overall result of my vision board is a much better, more descriptive picture of the vision I have for my life (at least from this vantage point).

What is your vision for 2010 … and beyond? Do you have something written down or a vision board somewhere you will see it every day?

I’m now looking forward to an incredible 2010 !

d.Mark “Dave” Wheeler