Merriam Webster defines affirm as meaning to validate or confirm. It's a solid word.
You have to turn the word into a noun (verbs lose their oomph when you turn them into nouns) to find the Oxford English Dictionary defining affirmation as "emotional support or encouragement."
In the self-development world, of course, affirmations are something that you repeat in the belief that saying something will make it true. This is a sort of combination of saying something solid and saying something encouraging.
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If you want affirmations to work, either in encouraging yourself or in supporting others, you have to validate or confirm something you believe to be true. You need to transform affirmation (noun) back into a verb (I affirm) to give the affirmation power.
It's an instance where grammar matters: using the verb changes your perception and makes it clear that an affirmation should be the opposite of a wish. When you affirm something, you say that you believe it is already true.
If you don't believe it, don't affirm it in the hopes that it might become true. That's roughly like telling the guy you're dating that you really, truly love him because he's a nice guy and you think it would be good if that were true. It's not going to lead to a happy future for either of you. You need to state your feelings as clearly as possible if you want to build on solid ground.
If you want a better affirmation, begin by telling yourself that truth about what is right with you and your world. Sorting out what is reliably good is a powerful way to find solid ground that will allow you to move and change.
When you're talking to yourself, you are talking to the friend who will walk with you through the whole of your life. That friend deserves the truth. When you affirm it, you'll be rewarded by a stronger relationship with the "you" you're talking to when you make your affirmations.