By now, you have more than likely heard your fair share of people employing daily, positive affirmations. Maybe it\u2019s your best friend, your sister or your partner who can\u2019t stop talking about how empowered they feel in their own self-worth. While you may appreciate their newly found confidence and love for themselves, all that self-talk might make you feel silly.\u00a0 Still, there is a science to affirmations that make them a reliable tool to have in your mental health toolbox. According to a study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, self-affirmations activate the brain\u2019s reward centers. These same areas respond to pleasurable experiences, like eating your favorite food.\u00a0 Positive affirmations also help create a kind of emotional buffer to painful, damaging or harmful situations. In this way, they can help build a type of resiliency to life\u2019s stressors. And who doesn\u2019t want to be a little more resilient?\u00a0 Finally, affirmations work to make you feel good about yourself, your life and your interactions with the world around you. That hard day at work or that breakup will cause stress or mental health challenges, but daily affirming your value can help you cope with those darker days.\u00a0 Here are 5 Reasons Why We Love Affirmations: Affirmations help boost your self-confidence When we practice positive affirmations, we begin to build a foundation for higher self-worth. Let\u2019s say, for example, you dislike the way you interrupt people while speaking. You are aware of the habit, and you try to remedy the action as much as possible. However, when you fail, you spiral into a storm of negative self-talk that eats at your confidence and worth. It makes you feel like a horrible friend and partner.\u00a0 But practicing positive affirmations reiterates your value. Interrupting someone doesn\u2019t make you a less valuable part of a relationship. Reminding yourself, \u201cI am a valuable friend,\u201d gives you an anchor when you mess up. Shifts Your Perceptions of How You Relate to Yourself and Others Practicing positive affirmations can help you better understand yourself and others. When you start to fall in love with yourself (flaws and all), you begin to see people as who they really are\u2014imperfect humans, just like you.\u00a0 This understanding can offer two benefits: firstly, you begin to see that people are dealing with their own set of personal problems that they may or may not be handling well, leading to a higher capacity for compassion and generosity. Secondly, you start to distance yourself from the need for external validation.\u00a0\u00a0 Rewires Your Negative Self-talk Affirmations also work on a neurological level to help rewire your brain. Research suggests that when we utilize healthy positive self-affirmations, we challenge our brain to renavigate what is essentially comfortable: negative self-talk. Of course, as with anything related to the brain, it is not easy to rewire our thoughts, but it is possible, and it takes time.\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0 Johnny Crowder, founder and CEO of Cope Notes, a tool that texts daily positive affirmations, gave a very insightful TedTalk on the matter. He says, \u201cThink of Cope Notes and any other growth resource as a cast on a broken leg. The cast doesn\u2019t heal your leg. Your leg heals your leg. Your body is designed to heal itself. The cast, although itchy and uncomfortable, simply keeps everything in place so that your leg can heal itself correctly.\u201d\u00a0 You begin to prioritize your \u201cnow\u201d over your \u201clater\u201d Many of us fall into the pattern of \u201cWhen I\u2026.\u201d Thoughts such as\u00a0 \u201cWhen I lose 30 lbs, I will finally wear a swimsuit on the beach.\u201d Or \u201cWhen I get that job, my parents will finally be proud of me.\u201d But a key element to affirmations is to help you love yourself now. Positive affirmations should be set in the present. You don\u2019t need to wait until you fulfill something to see that you are worthy of love and acceptance. You are already worthy. Right now. At this very moment.\u00a0 Affirmations such as \u201cI accept and love who I am today\u201d or \u201cI am proud of every step of progress I\u2019ve made\u201d can create the mindset that who you are today is just as important as who you were yesterday and who you\u2019ll be tomorrow.\u00a0 Grounds You in Gratitude\u00a0 When you start looking at your life through a more positive lens, you begin to see everything that brought you to this place. There are, of course, sorrowful or painful situations. But there are more than likely also beautiful, joyful experiences as well.\u00a0 Affirmations help you see the bigger picture\u2014that every experience formed who you are today. You can create affirmations that ground you in gratitude by focusing on what good is in your life today. Here is a great example, \u201cI see my past as a journey to my present. I let go of who I was then, embrace who I am now and am grateful for all of my accomplishments along the way.\u201d A few tips to help your affirmations stick: One essential thing to remember about self-affirmations is that they are a practice that requires commitment. Sure, we can tell ourselves that we will calm the negative chatter and say nice things to ourselves, but let\u2019s be honest, we say that we are going to do a lot of things.\u00a0 Instead, affirmations work best as a habit we create. Sometimes, we need a little extra help to make sure habits stick. Here are a few of our favorite ways to practice affirmations:\u00a0 \tWrite them out on sticky notes! Stick them in places you will read every day and places you won\u2019t, like inside your closet or shoe. \tSay them out loud in the mirror every morning. It will make you cringe at first, but you will love how wonderful it feels over time. \tFollow through with your actions. When you say to yourself, \u201cI am a kind and valuable person,\u201d make that a reality! Buy a stranger coffee, volunteer for a local nonprofit or compliment your neighbor.\u00a0 Positive affirmations are great tools to have for coping with self-doubt that spiral into negative thoughts. Other great tools include therapy with a professional, medication for a diagnosed mental health disorder, mindfulness meditation or yoga. It takes a variety of these tools to help find mental wellness, and you may need to mix and match to find what works best for you.\u00a0 Because, after all, you are a unique individual with a very unique journey. Embrace it!\u00a0 If you are interested in receiving affirmations but aren\u2019t sure where to start, Promises Behavioral Health is here to help. Sign up here for our Mental Health Awareness Month affirmations!