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Everyone engages in self talk. For most folks, self talk is negative talk conducted over a lifetime, which only adds to our self doubt.

In his excellent book The 25 Sales Habits of Highly Successful Salespeople, author Stephan Schiffman advises,“Sell yourself to yourself.”

How to do it? Compile a list of very personal affirmations.

Positive daily affirmations are positive thoughts or statements about some outcome that you wish to achieve, such as success. Instead of negative self talk, your affirmations will direct your thinking into the realm of the positive.

Although lists of affirmations are easily available, and may be helpful in your positive thinking quest, self-developed affirmations, ones that you compose yourself, are the most effective. But in order to be truly effective, you must not only write your own affirmations but believe in them. They must have a profound impact on you at an emotional level.

It is best to state your positive daily affirmations in the present tense, for example, “I am...,” rather than “I will be....” It is also important that you write your affirmations from a positive point of view. Too many people compile their affirmations in the negative state, which immediately defeats the purpose and effectiveness of the affirmation.

Schiffman encourages visualization. If, for example, you want a new car, he suggests that you place a picture of the vehicle you want so that you’ll see it frequently during the day.

Could affirmations make a difference in your life? Listen to yourself &mdash really listen. What are you saying to yourself each minute, each hour, each day. Few people are as optimistic and positive as they should be. Look at your own life. Do you like to be around positive and upbeat people, or do you like to be around negative, unhappy, complaining people. Are you one of those negative, complaining people?

Dale Carnegie said it best in his wonderful book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, “Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain &mdash and most fools do.” Do you know people like that? Do you like to be around people like that? Do you tend to avoid people who act like that? Are you repulsed by people like that?

After listening, really listening, to yourself, how do you categorize your thinking? Are you in the positive thinking, optimistic column, or are you in the negative, complaining column? Be honest with yourself. Do you want to make some changes, and become a more positive thinker? Affirmations may be the answer:

Examples of positive affirmations designed for success may include statements like these:

“Everything I do turns into success.”

“I attract positive-minded people to me.”

“I have the power to accomplish everything I need to do today.”

“I am a positive, optimistic thinker.”

“I celebrate my continuing good fortune.”

“I demonstrate excellence.”

“I deserve the good that comes my way.”

Lou O’Dell, a Dale Carnegie instructor and trainer for more than 40 years, said when people asked “How are you?” his answer was, “Fantastic, but I’m getting better!” When parting, he said “Be good to yourself.”

The job market is a competitive market. If you are in the process of searching for a new position, give yourself the extra “edge” of positive, optimistic thinking. Become someone you would like to be around. Companies prefer to hire positive people. Wouldn’t you?

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