When your affirmation trips up your kids…

Scene: Great Sushi restaurant.
Time: Evening, 1 week ago.

Players: Mom, with 13 year old daughter and 16 year old son. Plus me, family friend.

16 yr old, whining: Everyone came back (from Spring break) tan or with chapped skin from skiing and snowboarding. Why didn’t we go anywhere?

Mom: No money this time.

13 yr old: But you said we HAVE money – you always say we have money. You said we didn’t go anywhere because you forgot to plan for Spring break.

Mom: Well that’s my affirmation – I always say that we have money.

13 yr old: But we didn’t

Mom: Right.

13 yr old: So when do I know when we do or we don’t [have money]? (Read: When do I know when to believe you or not?)

Mom: Shrugs and smiles at her daughter.

What’s your take on this?

I haven’t been able to get it out of my mind entirely.

Affirmations are not my favorite thing, but I know many people use them. Is it OK to tell a kid a fib to match an affirmation that is just that and no more?

Here’s a child who now has to ask her Mom how to tell if she’s telling the truth or not.

Am I wrong here to feel like this is not the way to use affirmations?

About the author

Kim Klaver


  • Affirmations that are truthful are really useful. Obviously, this lady was affirming something that was not true. Maybe what she might have affirmed is: “we always have money for living expenses.” Might sound limiting, but it’s the truth. Affirmations without truth behind them seem to be rather meaningless. Even if they’re affirming a belief in some future event it seems they need to be sensible. If I affirm: “I am happy flying through the air like a bird,” I have just contradicted the laws of physics and aeronautics. But if I affirm: “I am happy imagining I am flying through the air like a bird,” I have affirmed a sensible concept. Affirmations is a tactic used in Network Marketing to create the illusion of achieving dreams by stoking the sub-conscious with sayings that will prompt actions. There’s nothing wrong with that, as long as the affirmations make sense. It’s when I hear people affirm that they are happy with 25,000 people in their downline that I take exception. Maybe 1 out 100,000 people who join NWM may ever achieve that rarity, and that leaves the other 99,000 bitter, depressed and angry at NWM and themselves for failing. The inability to achieve dreams is a frustration for everyone. There’s no sense in doubling the burden by using affirmations that are unachievable. It’s like saying the wrong things to prospect with–it gets you no results.

  • If one looks at this in light of the Law of Attraction she is not lying at all. Simply because it may not be spendable cash in hand at the moment does not mean they don’t have it. She was driving a car she could have sold for cash money, they lived in a house that may have given them cash money, they had things of value they could have sold for cash value. They chose not to because it didn’t seem of value to do so in order to pay for a skiing trip. It’s all about explaining to them it is a perspective and a perception. What a valuable teaching experience. 😀

    Tiffany Al-Anzi

    Wife of 1, Mom of 6

  • Kim,

    Exactly the scenario that has had me resisting affirmations…ok, I’ll be honest: thinking affirmations were just plain stupid.


    That little voice that whispers, “Yeah, right..!” each time I say an affirmation.

    Then along came a little book called Law of Attraction: The Science of Attracting More of What You Want and Less of What You Don’t Want” by Michael Losier. In it, Michael explains why affirmations don’t work for most people, and I’ll be darned if he doesn’t cite that little voice!

    Instead he advises creating what is called a Desire Statement. In a desire statement, you talk about what you want to attract in a way that evokes a positive feeling (“vibration”) and doesn’t trigger that little voice.


    Affirmation: I have all the money I could ever need.

    Desire Statment: I love knowing that I am in the process of attracting all the money I could ever need.

    For me, the affirmation makes that little “Yeah, right..!” voice go nuts, while the desire statement makes me smile and evokes feelings of hope. Plus, it’s more “true” in the present moment. I DO love knowing I am in the process of attracting money to my life.

    So, once again, “knowing what to say changes everything.” 🙂

  • >Am I wrong here to feel like this is not the way to use affirmations?

    Of course you’re not wrong.

    We all know rule #1: ‘don’t kid ourselves’.
    [And rule #2 is: ‘stop breaking rule #1’.]

    Interestingly (or not) the generally-accepted (at least in NM) understanding and application of ‘affirmation’ is way different than the dictionary term. Perhaps another example of feel-goodery-hokum peddled upon those who’ll try anything that’s promised to make their lives more like they wish it were.

    Power of positive thinking? Good stuff. Use it to genuinely triumph over adversity.

    To thine own self be true – don’t ever lose sight of the line between fantasy and fact.

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