"I think affirmations have gotten a really bad rap," meditation teacher, spiritual guide, and New York Times bestselling author Kimberly Snyder says on this episode of the mindbodygreen podcast. She's certainly not wrong: Other experts and researchers have noted how affirmations can be quite aspirational—which has the potential to make you feel even more uneasy.
But according to Snyder, these views oversimplify the power of the spoken word. Of course, simply telling yourself I am content or I am strong won't do much if you don't actually believe you are content or strong. "If we're just rattling off a bunch of words, then we're lying to ourselves," she says. Rather, in her newest title, You Are More Than You Think You Are, Snyder recommends a specific five-step process to make affirmations actually stick (originally taught by Paramahansa Yogananda, an Indian Hindu monk credited with bringing yoga to the West).
Below, she walks us through her go-to practice: