Tag Archives: refocusing your thoughts

The Treadmill Of Worry

In one of the classes I train, the participants take an assessment that pinpoints areas of unproductivity in their job. One of the big one that shows up often is Goal Diffusion. This occurs when a person has several smaller goals that distract them from their big goals. What happens is that they spend and focus their energy on things that don’t move them forward. They may feel somewhat accomplished because they are doing things, but they find that they aren’t advancing. It’s like being on a treadmill. They’re putting out a lot of energy, but they’re not moving. Instead of being laser focused on one goal, they’re dispersing their energy in a lot of different directions. The correction is to refocus on what matters, to choose a large goal that will move them forward and then to channel that all their energy in one direction.

The same thing can happen to us as believers. Many times we feel like we are busy for the Lord, but we’re going no where. We have our energy diffused by all the little things we’re doing or are worried about. Our enemy is pretty good at using worry and smaller goals to keep us distracted and unproductive. Worry takes up a lot of energy and strength. It also takes our eyes off of what matters and refocuses it on things that seem big, but in reality are not. When we spend time thinking about those things, we waste precious energy that could be laser focused somewhere else. The end result is that we are mentally, physically and spiritually exhausted. We also feel like we’re doing a lot, but we don’t feel like we are accomplishing anything with all of our efforts. Just like I mentioned before, the correction is to refocus on what matters and channel our energy in one direction.

Philippians 4:6 says, “Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude” (TPT). It goes on to tell us that when we do that, we will have the peace that passes understanding and that we need to keep our thoughts focused on what matters (verse 8). What are the things that are pulling you in different directions? What are the things that are creating worry in your life and changing your focus? The correction that all of us need to make is to become more saturated in prayer in our lives. Prayer not only helps us give our worries to God, it helps us refocus on what matters, put our problems in perspective and channel our energy in a direction that moves us forward. Stay focused on the things that matter, stay in prayer, seek God’s Kingdom first (Matthew 6:31) and then you will find you’ve gotten off the treadmill of worry and are moving forward.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

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Controlling Anxious Thoughts

How do you react to stress? I know we all handle it differently. One of the times i was stressed out, i couldn’t sleep. I had so many things going on that i couldn’t control. Those problems started causing other problems and things started to compound. The things I couldn’t control became all I could think about. I couldn’t sleep or eat much because i was so worried about all these things. Then my eye started to twitch, which drove me nuts. I figured I could control that so I went to the eye doctor. After checking out my eyes, he said, “There’s nothing wrong. This is usually a sign of stress. You’re not stressed are you?” I laughed and said, “Just a little.” I loved under that stress for a while because i kept letting my thoughts run wild about all the things I couldn’t control.

I eventually learned that worrying about things I couldn’t control was robbing me of so many things. I realized that i had to focus on what i could control which was my thoughts and spending time with the one who is able to control the things I can’t. 2 Corinthians 10:5 tells us to take every thought captive. That means to stop them in their tracks, interrupt them and get them out. I had to train myself to quit letting them go wherever they wanted and force them into obedience to Christ. They don’t have a right to control me. I have been given authority to control them. Once I realized that, I began to use the Bible as my benchmark of truth against the thoughts. When I held them up to the Bible in comparison to what God says, if they didn’t line up, they had to go.

King David reacted to stress the same way. He let his thoughts get out of control until he was stressed out. He wrote Psalm 94:19 showing he learned to quiet them. He wrote, “Whenever my busy thoughts were out of control, the soothing comfort of your presence calmed me down and overwhelmed me with delight” (TPT). Many times, we simply need to get out of the present and into His presence to regain control. I like to turn the tide by turning on praise and worship to get in His presence and to start realigning my thoughts. I can then cast my burdens on the Lord and quit trying to do things in my strength. There are many things He created us to do, but carrying burdens that we can’t control isn’t one of them. We rob ourselves of the peace He offers and rob Him of things that should be on His plate instead of ours. If you’re anxious and overwhelmed today, make time to get into His presence and challenge those anxious thoughts. He offers you peace, calmness and His burdens instead.

Photo by Emma Simpson on Unsplash

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