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But I can't!

Lifehack.org has an interesting article entitled "But I can't…"

How often each day do you tell yourself, or others, you can't do something? Is it true? How do you know you can't? What if you're limiting yourself without knowing it? What if you're lying to save face or avoid embarrassment?

This is one of things I hope to overcome with the use of positive affirmations. I don't expect to notice any large changes just yet, but I'm quietly confident that they will have a positive effect on my life. "I can't" is simply a negative affirmation, and one I intend to ditch for good.

30 Days of Positive Affirmations

The 30 day, no risk trial

Back in April, Steve Pavlina wrote about the concept of testing changes in your life for 30 days.

A powerful personal growth tool is the 30-day trial. This is a concept I borrowed from the shareware industry, where you can download a trial version of a piece of software and try it out risk-free for 30 days before you're required to buy the full version. It's also a great way to develop new habits, and best of all, it's brain-dead simple.

I like this method because it's a great way of overcoming the initial resistance to change. You know you can stop after 30 days, which also drives you towards completing the trial period.

The power of positive affirmations

I've read about the use of positive affirmations in several books, but I've never got around to trying them out. A recent entry on Out of Bounds about positive affirmations renewed my interest in them, so I've decided to try them out.

The article also links to a very interesting site, bmindful. It's a very modern looking site that allows you to share and tag affirmations. I'm using a few of the affirmations as inspiration for my own.

The experiment

Starting on the 1st of December, I'll be using positive affirmations for 30 days. It's quite likely that I'll tweak as I go along, but at the start I intend to write my affirmations on an index card and read them aloud three times a day.

I'll be writing about the whole experience, and I'm looking forward to seeing what the results are.

The Printable CEO

If you work for yourself, the chances are that motivating yourself is an important, and sometimes difficult, activity. David Seah has a great method for overcoming this problem, in the form of "The Printable CEO". I've only been using it for a week, but I'm already seeing an improvement in the amount of work I'm getting done.

The basic premise is to assign scores to certain jobs you'll be doing throughout the day. Each time you complete one of these jobs, you give yourself "points". It's a simple system, but there's strangely something satisfying about earning points during the day, and so far I've found it to be a real motivator when I don't feel like doing anything.

Next week I'll be writing about how I've integrated the Printable CEO into my personal progress system.

Read more: The Printable CEO