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Doggone It, People Like Me! Make daily affirmations work for you.

By Sean M. Lyden

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Remember Stuart Smalley? You know, the guy on Saturday Night Live who'd gaze in the mirror and, with a plastered smile, recite aloud, "I'm good enough. I'm smart enough. And, doggone it, people like me." Don't let this spoof put a bad taste in your mouth about using affirmations: They really do work--when you do them properly.

Ask Ken Gootnick, 36, president and founder of It's All Greek To Me, a Simi Valley, California, company that develops imprinted products for promotional, collegiate and souvenir markets. Gootnick regularly uses positive affirmations to cultivate a mind-set that pushes him toward his goals. "When you repeat affirmations, you feel more positive about your life and the day ahead," he says. "You foster self-esteem and a feeling of confidence, and people want to be around you. Everything begins to come together."

"Come together" it has for Gootnick, who started his company at age 19 as a sophomore at UCLA. He's since grown it into an enterprise with 230 employees and projected 1999 sales of $30 million. He gives a lot of credit to his own consistent use of affirmations.

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