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How Affirmations Helped Create My Worldwide Empire

By Scott Adams, Creator of Dilbert

Several years ago, in the closing pages of my otherwise humorous book titled The Dilbert Future, I told a weird little tale of how I used a technique called affirmations in my attempts to achieve a number of unlikely goals.

Since then, I’ve received more questions on that topic than on anything else I’ve ever written. So I know this will pin the needle on the blog comments.

The idea behind affirmations is that you simply write down your goals 15 times a day and somehow, as if by magic, coincidences start to build until you achieve your objective against all odds.

An affirmation is a simple sentence such as “I Scott Adams will become a syndicated cartoonist.” (That’s one I actually used.)



Prior to my Dilbert success, I used affirmations on a string of hugely unlikely goals that all materialized in ways that seemed miraculous. Some of the successes you can explain away by assuming I’m hugely talented and incredibly sexy, and therefore it is no surprise that I accomplished my goals despite seemingly long odds. I won’t debate that interpretation because I like the way it sounds.

But some of my goals involved neither hard work nor skill of any kind. I succeeded with those too, against all odds. Those are harder to explain, at least for me, since the most common explanation is that they are a delusion. I found my experience with affirmations fascinating and puzzling, and so I wrote about it.

At this point, allow me to correct a mistake I made the first time that I described my experience with affirmations. If you only hear the objective facts, it sounds as if I believe in some sort of voodoo or magic. That’s not the case.

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