The Power of Reaffirmation

Today was a good day. As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve been feeling better and there’s always that jolt of energy that comes with feeling better. You slide into a better version of yourself and feel calmer, more confident, more capable. Which, of course, turns the vicious negative cycle into the continuous positive one.

There’s been some activity at work and I’ve been finding myself responding without panic but productively and quickly and effectively. I love feeling effective. I realized a few months ago that, at my core, this is one of the ways I measure my self-worth. If I am effective, I am useful. If I am useful, I am worthy. I know it’s whacked and I am working on disconnecting the threads and reminding myself that I am worthy just the way I am but in the meantime, I’ve been paying attention to these cycles and messages in my life. I figure while I work on things, which will take a while to resolve, I can at least become more aware so that I notice when I am in a cycle that I know won’t end well.

Anyhow, so I’ve been doing better. And today, someone I work with said “you’re doing an awesome job.” And, honestly, it was all I needed to hear. I was so grateful for the words. Not because I need the attention or recognition. And I was already doing well so I didn’t even need them to get out of a bad mood. I just needed them to affirm that I was on the right path and those little words gave me the energy to keep going. They were like a jolt of gratitude.

These seemingly small words always make a big difference. I’ve had a few people email me or leave comments with very kind words. Words on how they connected with what I wrote or how it makes a difference in their lives or suggestions for areas where I’ve asked for help. These few sentences often make my day. To me, they are affirmation that I matter. That there’s a purpose for my existence in the world. Maybe it seems weird to others that I should need/want this, but I’ve learned that, for me, these are like energy for my soul. They are what keep me joyful and connected. They give me a sense of belonging.

And I want to make sure I do my part in passing that feeling on to others, too. I often send IMs to engineers I work with letting them know that I think they’re amazing, thanking them for their hard work, etc. When someone makes my life easier, better, calmer I want them to know it. I want to pass on a bit of the gratitude I feel for their existence.

I think receiving and giving these affirmations strengthens our roots and connections to others. To the world and humanity as a whole. It reminds us that we’re all here and we each matter. Each of us makes this place better because we’re in it.

And all this from “you’re doing an awesome job.”

If such few words can have so much power, why wouldn’t we utter them more often?

4 comments to The Power of Reaffirmation

  • Emie

    Another GREAT post!!!! I know someone who complains all the time… and it’s draining to be around. So.. I decided to make a point of doing the opposite…. tell people when they do something nice, good etc. I wrote a positive comment card about an employee at the grocery store who went out of her way for me…. and I got a Thank You card back from her!!! It made my year!!!! I’m really connecting with your thoughts!!!!

  • your blog is very affirming. i enjoy coming here. the colors in your pictures always give me a lift.

  • Ami Crawford

    I second your co-workers remark. You are indeed doing an awesome job! You have touched my life within a very short time. Your words are so moving, inspiring, and you openly bare your soul in such a beautiful way. You are helping others who need to hear the contents of your message.

    Wishing you peace~

  • Hanna

    This is what I’m trying to do too: always tell people the positive things I think. I often find myself thinking that someone is really nice, thoughtful or just look great but I say nothing to them. And afterwords I can’t think of one good reason not to. I need to constantly remind myself how little it takes to make somebody else smile and feel better. And thank you again Karen for sharing in such an authentic way – no klichés, no cover up and fake smiles. I love that.

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