Self-Affirmations, as they are widely called are an ancient tool that have been a component of religious and spiritual practises throughout the ages. More recently they have been embraced by sports coaches, life coaches and motivational speakers the world over because of the scientific proof that they work.

Studies in America have proven that affirmations have helped students achieve better grades, they have been seen to reduce stress in people and also to improve problem solving. In a study carried out in Canada, published in 2012, Error-Related Negativity (ERN), is a pronounced wave of electrical activity in the brain that occurs within 100ms of making an error on a task. The researchers carried out tests and found that self-affirmation improves performance and increases neuro-affective sensitivity to task errors.

Essentially, what this means is that if we have two people. One of them has been regularly affirming “I am a confident communicator”. As they both go about their daily business, they are talking with a lack of confidence, the brain of the person who has been using the affirmation will note the error (i.e. the lack of confidence in their behaviour compared to the statement they have been affirming) and correct the error enabling them to speak more confidently.

The brain of the person who did not use the affirmation will not even notice the error, their lack of confidence, and so will just continue speaking in a non-confident manner.

Science shows that mindful practises like these are very effective at ensuring that your sub-conscious and conscious minds co-operate to vastly increase your chances of success.