Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Empowering Children Using Affirmations

By Dumari Dancoes ( (as featured in the Children of the New Earth online magazine (August 2005 issue)) “I can do this. I am smart,” I heard my four-year old say as he was intently focused on building a new puzzle. I smiled knowing this positive self-talk would help him accomplish his goal. A few minutes later, I heard an enthusiastic, “I did it!” Have you ever used positive self-talk to help you feel better? Have you used affirmations to assist you in creating a positive attitude or achieving a specific goal? Did it help you? Positive self-talk or affirmations are used to help you feel better, create positive attitudes and achieve desired goals. In this article, we will look at how to create empowering affirmations and fun ways to introduce them to children. Our self-talk has an undeniable effect on the attitudes and outcomes in our lives. What we think, we create! Our thoughts, words and beliefs are powerful creating tools that are at work all the time, whether we realize it or not. Add emotion to these thoughts, and they are manifested into physical reality that much faster. This applies to all of us, grown-ups as well as children. Affirmations are positive statements about who we are, and what we can become and experience. They help us focus on what we want. The key in using affirmations effectively is to have them evoke positive emotions within us. At an energy level, the vibration of our emotions makes the universal Law of Attraction work for us, attracting experiences with similar energy vibration to ourselves. Similar to the phrase, “When it rains it pours”; it is the same concept. Only in this situation the focus is typically on negative events cascading one after the other, but this truth exists in all situations. This is why it is so important to monitor and choose our thoughts as much as possible. When our children are feeling down, angry or upset, using affirmations and positive visualizations can change their focus from what they do not want to what they DO want. Changing their thoughts to positive, happy ones, puts them in a good vibrational place to attract that which they desire. When we use affirmations and positive self-talk, our children learn how to do this for themselves. Affirmations work very rapidly with young children because they still remember the truth of their inner power, abundance and love. Reinforcing these positive thoughts and feelings gives children the self-confidence, positive attitude and beliefs which help them create joyful experiences. CREATING AFFIRMATIONS 1. Empowering affirmations are always stated in a positive way. For example, “I am smart.” Instead of, “I am not dumb.” Stating affirmations in the positive puts our focus on what we want, rather than on what we do not want. 2. When making affirmations, write and say them as if they already exist. For example, “I am a fast runner,” not “I will run fast.” When we state in the present, we start creating the outcome now. Alternatively, when we say, “I will,” we are expecting to receive what we are stating some day in the future, which will never arrive because the Universe and our subconscious mind always create in the Now. 3. We can make affirmations especially powerful when we put emphasis on the words “I AM.” The words “I AM” call the creative aspect of God within us. Encourage children to use esteem-building “I am” statements like “I am creative.” “I am helpful and caring.” To reinforce “I am” statements when talking to your children, you can substitute “I am” for “You are”. For example, “You are creative.” “You are helpful and caring.” 4. Keep affirmations short, simple and clear. The shorter the better because this makes it easier to remember and repeat. 5. Evoke positive emotion. When affirming, imagine a specific scenario related to the affirmation; involve as many senses as possible until you really feel good inside. EMPOWERING AFFIRMATIONS FOR CHILDREN Affirmations should be personalized for each child depending on their age, vocabulary comprehension, and unique needs and interests. The following affirmations serve as guidelines that you and your children can customize to meet your needs. Self Confidence: I am great. I am powerful. I am beautiful. I am a loving boy/girl. I am good at… riding my bike, math, science. I am a good reader. I am a fast learner. I am smart. I am full of good ideas. I am very creative. I am a good influence on others. I am unique and valuable. I am always doing the best I can at the moment, and so are you. I am proud of my computer skills. I can swim 3 laps at the pool I play this week’s piano lesson perfectly. I focus on the positive and attract only good things to myself. I ask good questions. I can do anything I set my mind to. I can do it. I believe in me. My dreams are coming true. I create a beautiful, joyful day for myself. I deserve good things. Spiritual: I am full of light and love. I am unique and special. I am perfect just the way I am. I am blessed. I am truthful. I am enough. I am forgiving. I am thankful. I am one with the universe. I am grateful for all the good in my life. I am always in the right place at the right time. I am safe. I am protected by God and angels. I am a joyful, loving child of God. Everything happens for my higher good. I see a universe of order and harmony. Every problem has an answer. Good things happen to me all the time. I accept good in my life. I love myself totally and completely. I like myself. I listen to my heart. God made me perfect in every way. God within me is my power. God’s light is my protection. God loves me and protects me. Emotional: I am loved. I am a loving boy/girl. I am beautiful, inside and outside. I feel calm and relaxed (especially when child is upset). I love my life and have lots of fun. I choose how I feel by the way I think and talk. I feel happy. Social: I am friendly. I am a good friend to myself. I am kind to others and they are kind to me. I am helpful. I am a good listener. I express myself clearly. I make friends easily. I have lots of friends who love me. New friends are continually coming into my life. I play well with others. Health: I am healthy. I am strong. I am in great shape. I love my body. I eat healthfully. I enjoy exercising. I take good care of my body. TIME FOR AFFIRMATIONS! Following are FUN ways to introduce and reinforce positive affirmations with children. “My Affirmation Chart/Collage” Visual reminders of happy and positive thoughts make it easier for children to focus on what they want to experience. An affirmation chart on the wall is an effective and constant reminder that reinforces what your children desire in their life. They can see and/or read their affirmations every morning and every night before going to bed. Have your children make their own chart. They will need: - A large piece of paper, 11 x 17 inches, or poster board. - Magic Markers or pens, either black or colored. - Images (pictures, photos, magazine cut-outs) that help your children feel good. - As many wonderful thoughts about themselves, as they can imagine. My Affirmations Chart · I am great. · I am special. · I am loved. · … “My Affirmations Box” Your children can have their own special affirmations box filled with encouraging, joyful thoughts. Each morning, they can pick an affirmation to focus on that day from their affirmations box. You can spend a few minutes with them to create a visual image for their affirmation, to get a feeling for it, and to say it aloud with meaning. Your children can also make their own affirmation box to make it more special to them. You can get a simple small box at a crafts store and have your children decorate it. They will need: - A medium size box (should be big enough to hold more than 40 slips of paper). - Decorations for the box (magic markers, paint and brushes, glitter glue, etc.). - Pieces of paper (index cards cut in fours). - Images (pictures, photos, magazine cut-outs) related to your child’s affirmations. (optional) After the box is decorated, have your children (or you, if your children are too young to write) write the affirmations on the slips of paper. The affirmations should come from your children, but you can offer some ideas from the affirmations in this article. It is important that they only choose affirmations that feel right to them. Adding images that your children like helps them feel even better when reading the affirmations. “Let’s Sing!” Songs are a fun way to reinforce affirmations. Songs are repetitive and evoke emotion: two key factors that make affirmations more effective. You can change the words of a song your children like with the affirmations, or you can make up your own song. You can introduce the new song to your children by first singing it yourself. After having you sing your new song happily several times, they will start remembering the words and maybe even singing it in their heads or out loud. You can sing the following song to the tune of “Three Blind Mice”. I am Love. I am Love. I am Peace. I am Peace. My day is full of Fun, Love and Peace. In all I do there is Light and Cheer. Love and Peace. Love and Peace. “I am Joy” (Tune: chorus of “Jingle Bells”) I am Joy. I am Joy. I am Joy today. I am Joy, I am Joy. I am Joy all day. (Possible variations: change words to “I am Love”; “I am Light”; “We are God”; “We are One”, etc.). Some of my children’s favorite affirming songs we have made up… - “I am happy. I am healthy. I am wealthy. I am wise. God’s love flows through me now.” “Read Affirming Children’s Books” Reading children’s books where the characters use positive affirmations and have a positive attitude are a great way to show children how others use positive self-talk to create a happy outcome. Some examples of this type of books are: - The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper - The Affirmation Web, A Believe in Yourself Adventure by Lori Lite - I Turn to the Light, A Book of Healing Affirmations by Connie Bowen - I Like Me by Nancy L. Carlson “Bedtime Meditations” Reading affirmations out loud at bedtime is a sweet and wonderful way to connect with your children. Your loving voice will bring much comfort to your child. You can either speak positive thoughts softly to your children while they are falling asleep or you can record them a tape with their favorite affirmations. You could start by saying, “My beautiful child, it is now time to rest. I love you. You are loved. You are healthy and strong. You are smart. You are blessed. You are safe. You make friends easily. You are helpful. You are perfect just the way you are. You are kind. You create beautiful and happy experiences for yourself. It is easy for you to be happy. You are peaceful…” You can change these affirmations to personalize it to your child’s needs. You may also add descriptive images of your child experiencing happy events and succeeding at things you know she wants to accomplish. You may also record the affirmations. This allows your children to listen to your loving voice whenever they need it. They may play it at bedtime, rest time, or when needing to feel better. When recording affirmations for your children, is best to use “I am” statements. You can also play affirmations that have already been recorded. A good affirmations CDs for children is Indigo Dreams by Lori Lite. This CD is designed to introduce children to breathing, visualizations and affirmations. Another beautiful CD is Children of Light, Affirmations, Songs, & Toning-Meditation by Heather Macauley. Both these CDs are recommended for children ages 2 ½ and older. BE A ROLE-MODEL… AFFIRM YOURSELF! As parents, we are our children’s most powerful role-models. We can help empower them by using positive self-talk ourselves. Using affirmations that reflect self-confidence, love, trust, and abundance to create our own reality is the best example we can give our children. It is up to us to provide children with tools they can use to empower themselves and counteract the negative and self-limiting thoughts that bombard them on a daily basis. Affirmations, combined with positive emotions, are a powerful way to help us and our children manifest a joyful life. Keys to Successful Affirming: Affirmations work best when we are very relaxed, such as falling asleep, waking up or meditating. Include a mental picture which evokes emotions to go with the affirmation. Repeat affirmations often during your day. Use different ways to affirm: read it, write it, visualize it, speak it, sing it, and dance to it. References Jenkins, P. (1996). The Joyful Child: A source book of activities and ideas for releasing children’s natural joy (3rd ed). Santa Rosa, CA: Aslan Publishing. Stinnett, L. (1996). A Circle of Angels: workbook designed for the little people of the world, waiting to join and share in the light. Sedona, AZ: StarChild Press. Macauley, H. (2003). Children of Light: Affirmations, Songs & Toning-Meditation CD. Lite, L. (2004). Indigo Dreams CD. © Dumari Dancoes - Children Lights ABOUT THE AUTHOR Dumari Dancoes is a Certified Parent Educator and Family Coach specializing in Indigo Children, a Certified Spiritual Counselor and an Angel Therapy Practitioner trained by Doreen Virtue, PhD, author of The Crystal Children and The Care and Feeding of Indigo Children. Dumari’s desire to help today’s children led her to found Children Lights and create, a resource for parents, educators and lightworkers who desire to better understand the new children and empower them. She leads the Southern New Hampshire chapter of the Holistic Moms Network, a national organization for mothers interested in conscious parenting and alternative/natural healthcare. Dumari was born and raised in Puerto Rico and is bilingual in Spanish and English.