An affirmation, in my view from NLP, is an internal sound. Depending on the emotional state that it generates, the internal experience of an inner sound (test this out – say something like ‘yay!’ as if you said it out loud in a room, but keep that silent in your mind, sending the sensation all through your body). If you said it right, you might probably feel lots of tingling sensations in your body. It’s like a time you wanted to shout out in joy, but you were not allowed to make loud noises.
In contrast, a negative thought sends similar ripples of feelings through your body. What this can do is reduce energy and build up tension in the body (which may be the reason for lots of muscular tension, headaches and the like), possibly leading up to disease and illness.
A lot of people simply use affirmations for the purposes of ‘positive thinking’. Well, if you want to benefit from affirmations, you have to deeply believe in the affirmation itself. In addition, since NLP allows you to control the effect of intensity in your submodalities, you should be able to increase the sensation associated with the submodalities. For instance, how about using your affirmations in a tone of voice that makes you feel really good? Perhaps you could even bring the image closer and make it a little brighter if that helps to amplify the feeling you have.
Affirmations in their original form are just statements. You simply “say” it (I’m feeling positive and full of energy). But if you said it in a strong place of belief, the effect is extremely different.
It’s also quite common for people to ignore the use of affirmations when they have a bad day. To me, it’s merely an indication that you haven’t readily ‘immunized’ yourself from negative experiences. In other words, the external triggers in your environment are still firing negative associations. You will need to learn how to use some strategies to get rid of that negative association, so that whenever you experience something negative, you could continue to affirm yourself and speak in a way that helps energize you rather than weaken you.