Posted by: The I AM Foundation | May 21, 2009

“I AM! Affirmations”: 3rd Article in the Series

“I AM” Affirmations

for Self-Esteem

by Dr. Marilyn Powers and Steve Viglione



“My students were very excited to receive their I AM! Books….As a teacher, I found the books to be extremely motivating and encouraging. I teach my students that they only achieve what they believe and the I AM! Books encourage them to believe in themselves.”

— Tracy Ginez,  Blue Creek Elementary, Jacksonville, NC


An affirmation is a true statement, and the truth is that you are a loving intelligent caring being full of potential and worthy of love, respect and appreciation.  Whatever we choose to say after the words “I am” affect our feelings, moods, and even how we see the world. When they’re positive, these beliefs support us in feeling more confident and capable at school, at home, wherever we are.

I Am Success!

And what I start I sure can do.

I simply practice, practice, practice,

The thing I’ve set my mind to.

I Am Persistence!

I face my fears head on.

And as I stand to face them,

One by one they’re gone.

As you begin a new month, set your standards high.

Know that you are worthy of success and that your success is determined by your intentions. What do you want to create in your life? That is your path and you can succeed. Nothing can stop you from reaching your goal unless you let it. The key to success is practice, practice, practice. Keep trying even when you’re afraid to fail. When you are unsure, trust that you can get back on track. And, when you’re sure that you’ll never make it, picture success right around the corner. Often you may not have the skills you need when you start, but soon you will succeed through practice. Each day practice feeling and being a success. YOU are the only one who has the power to decide how you feel and what you think.

If you want to learn a new skill or express a talent, remember to say out loud: “I Am Success! And what I start I sure can do. I simply practice, practice, practice the thing I’ve set my mind to.” When you say the affirmation, you are encouraged to take action and know that, if you don’t get something the first time you try it, it doesn’t mean you are a failure. It simply means you still have practicing to do.

You have a brain that is amazingly good at solving problems. Think about it. How did you learn to catch a ball, ride a bike, or learn to talk? Your brain figured it out for you. All it needed was your determination and the opportunity to make mistakes until you figured it out.

Thomas Never Gave Up

When Thomas Edison wanted to invent the light bulb, he tried it one way and it didn’t work. So he tried another way, and that didn’t work either. Then he investigated, tried something new, and it still didn’t work! Then he made another change and tried again, and again, and again, and again. It took him over 1000 tries before it worked! Any time along the way he might have given up and said, “I don’t know how to make a light bulb work. Nothing I try works. I’ll never get it right.” Instead, he kept practicing and experimenting. He never gave up until, at last, he got it.

So find the joy and gratitude in knowing that you can put your heart and mind into what matters to you. No matter how unlikely your goal may seem, or how many people say you “can’t” do it, the choice is up to you. Other people may express their fears, anxieties, or limitations, but you can choose to let go of your fears instead of letting them determine what you can do. There are always exceptions to every rule and there are always people who succeed when others say it’s impossible. Know that YOU can be the exception to the rule. YOU can do what you put your mind to. Where others say “I can’t,” you find a solution and say “I can!”

Along the way, if fears come up, say out loud, “I Am Persistence! I face my fears head on. And as I stand to face them, one by one they’re gone.” Then think about what you are afraid of. What are you telling yourself? Are you telling yourself that if you don’t get it right the first time, you shouldn’t do it at all? Or that the other kids will make fun of you if you don’t succeed at first? Or maybe when you don’t succeed at first you think that your parents will be disappointed with you. Whatever the fear, there is another choice. Look at the fear and turn it into something that will move you forward and make your life a little better. Remember: “I can take action. I can practice, even when I’m afraid. I will succeed with action and practice.”

Jimmy Kept Trying, Too

Jimmy failed his spelling test. It wasn’t the first time, and probably wouldn’t be the last. He went home, feeling like a failure. He went up to his room and curled up on his bed, feeling sad and angry. Soon his mom came in and said, “Jimmy, what’s wrong?”

“I failed another spelling test. I can’t spell and I don’t want to go to school and get up and spell ever again.”

His mother listened and then said, “It sounds like you’re really frustrated when it comes to spelling. What if we could figure out a way to help you? Would you be willing to practice?”

“Sure, but it won’t help. Nothing helps.”

“Okay. I heard something new today. Let’s try it. What’s one of the words you got wrong on your test?”

“Journey, I always get that word wrong.”

“Okay, close your eyes and, as I tell you how to spell the word, pretend you are writing it on a blackboard in your mind. Journey. J-O-U-R-NE-Y. Now, look at the blackboard in your mind and spell it to me backwards.”

Jimmy did it and got it right! He could see the letters on the board and say them so easily backwards. After that, he practiced, practiced, practiced on his own blackboard in his mind. That night he practiced all his words and the next week he got up and spelled most of the words right.

I AM! Affirmations help build our confidence, support us taking action, and encourage us to share our feelings and have them validated. The outcome is our experience of feeling successful when we have persisted and practiced.



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