We get it. It’s pretty hard to grasp the notion that without making any purchases, without committing ourselves to an organization, and without even exerting our physical bodies, we hold the power to make real, tangible, major change in our lives. And to some, the idea of a mantra is cheesy — but let’s step out of that for a moment.
In fact, let’s remove ourselves entirely from the idea of a mantra as we’ve known it. We tend to think of mantras as repetitive, self-affirming statements said into a mirror every morning. While we think that’s beautiful, we know the connotations of it feel limiting to some. It may be hard to feel authentic, we may feel corny if we have roommates or a partner that isn’t aligned with exploring this level of spirituality, or we may find that a single mantra doesn’t resonate with us for long. But let’s pause there.
A mantra can be anything. And it doesn’t need to be said out loud. Let’s consider for a moment: our thoughts. If you’ve ever had one annoying mishap occur in the morning and then thought, “Wow, okay, it’s going to be one of those days, huh?” And then, like clockwork, a cascade of annoyances, mistakes, or grievances follow us around — until we even forget we had that negative mindset to begin with… Well, sound the alarms, you’re human.
However, the mind is a powerful thing. It’s more likely than not that we manifested that annoying morning of serial slip-ups by confirming in our heads — and whole-heartedly believing — that the rest of the morning or day would go as we had determined. For some reason, it’s so easy to believe the worst is yet to come, rather than the best. That’s why mantras feel like work — they are.
Now, imagine that we can swing our energy in the other direction. Dr. Joe Dispenza is a doctor, scientist, and modern-day mystic who is also the father of the expression, “change your energy.” In his book, Becoming Supernatural, he explains how powerful thought is, each and every day, particularly when it comes to major positive outcomes.
When we go to bed each night anticipating the same problems, stressors, activities, and more, and then wake the next morning and do exactly those activities that cause those outcomes with the same attitude, how can we expect change? It’s only when we decide to stop living in the past by thinking about it and repeating it — and instead, truly imagine the future we want and believe we can get there a day at a time that will we actually do it.
This is where the idea of the mantra is given new meaning. Instead of dwelling on how poorly we are feeling now, let’s shift our energy to thinking about how great we’ll feel when we are past whatever is dragging us down. Before bed, let’s think, “Tomorrow is going to be amazing. I’m going to be on top of my to-do list, and have room to plan my next steps.”
Let’s think, “I’m already healing so quickly, my body and mind are resilient. My dream home is feeling closer with every passing day, because it is!”
Let’s think, “I’m naturally beautiful, but taking care of my skin and my body gives me the gift of longevity. I can’t wait to meet my grandkids one day.”
Let’s think, “This current job isn’t serving me, but I know what will bring my soul purpose is right around the corner. Tomorrow will bring me something special.”
Whatever our typical negative thoughts are, let’s try and swap them out for the opposite. Instead of lamenting that we haven’t yet met the love of our life, let’s replace empty sadness with giddy excitement. Instead of worrying about work tomorrow, let’s breathe joyful relief that now it’s time to rest, recharge, and actualize our dream job tomorrow, one baby step at a time. Instead of wallowing in emotional or even physical pain, let’s believe that the path to healing is rapid, and our body is incredibly capable.
We realize that to some it can feel like lying to ourselves. And at first, it is. But it’s only a “lie” when we still don’t believe it. The more we practice this, the more we learn to trust ourselves. When we shift the reality of our perspective, we begin to change, both physically and on a cellular level. Our body responds to our emotions, and positive emotions breed health, success, and radiant beauty.
So what are you waiting for? We can start right now. Replace your negative thoughts at this very moment with the opposite — something you actively want to see. Before bed, practice visualization and tell yourself your desires are underway. It takes time to believe in yourself, but once you do, everything you want will become a powerful mantra until it’s wholly, inevitably yours.