“Be careful what you think, because your thoughts run your life.” Proverbs 4:23 NCV
Have you heard the story about the two marketing scouts sent to an impoverished region of world? This was before we had the internet. They were sent to see if there were any opportunities to expand business. One scout sent back a telegraph saying,
SITUATION HOPELESS STOP NO ONE WEARS SHOES
The other wrote back,
GLORIOUS BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY STOP THEY HAVE NO SHOES
Each scout sees the same thing and comes to a different conclusion. Who do you believe? Is it hopeless or filled with possibility?
The poet William Blake writes,
“The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way.”
A new year is a great time to pay attention to what you pay attention to. We are often more aware of how we spend our time than what occupies our thoughts. Where does your mind go?
If pressed, most of us could identify an unhealthy thought pattern that surfaces when we are under pressure or stressed. Or maybe it comes out when you’re tired, hungry, angry or hurt. It could be overthinking or negative thinking. It may be that your thoughts tend to be overrun by worry, control, or desires. Maybe all you can think about is that leftover chocolate cake!
“Far more than you may realize, your experiences, your world, and even your self are the creations of what you focus on.” Winifred Gallagher
Living well depends on thinking well. The way we see ourselves and our situations impacts how we live our lives.
As the new year begins, let’s scout out our thinking. Anne Bogel offers three helpful reflection questions*:
I am the kind of person who __________
How would you like to see yourself in the future?
I would like to be the kind of person who __________
*From Don’t Overthink it: Make Easier Decisions, Stop Second-Guessing, and Bring More Joy to Your Life by Anne Bogel