Would you like to fly 72 times in 10 months?
I did in 2012.
And I loved it.
One simple reason. I changed my thinking.
When you know how to completely change your thinking you can change your life.
We launched Grow a Healthy Church in 2012 to help pastors grow a healthy church.
I knew I was going to spend an inordinate amount of time on planes.
So I made a decision: I would look forward to every flight and enjoy it.
I developed a new mindset so let me show you how to completely change your thinking.
Your Brain Is A Powerful Beast
Your brain is made of more than 10 billion nerve cells and 50 billion other cells. It weighs 1 – 1.5kg. It monitors and regulates unconscious bodily processes like breathing and heart rate and coordinates voluntary movement.
The brain interprets what the eyes see and take in. It controls the retina which processes about ten one-million-point images per second.
It uses 20% of the blood pumped by the heart and 20% of the body’s oxygen.
The capacity of your brain to remember, think and create is superior to that of any computer built by man.
Your brain is powerful and what dwells in it will shape your life because what’s on your mind will be in your life.
What’s On Your Mind Will Be In Your Life
If hurt is on your mind … then unforgiveness will be in your life
If a Lotto life fantasy is on your mind … then discontent will be in your life
If porn is on your mind … then lust will be in your life
If self-pity is on your mind … then ungratefulness will be in your life
If purity is on your mind … then boundaries will be in your life
If forgiveness is on your mind … then love will be in your life
If giving is on your mind … then generosity will be in your life
If God is on your mind … then prayer will be in your life
Christ revealed the importance of your thought life when He declared that “the mouth speaks what the heart is full of” Matt. 12:34.
Filling your heart with appropriate thoughts and faith-filled godly concepts will lead to language that encourages, strengthens and builds the church.
Paul reinforced this by commanding the believers at Philippi to think about noble, pure and admirable things, Philippians 4:6.
A leader’s thought life is therefore pivotal to their well-being.
Change Your Mind, Change Your Life
What’s on your mind eventually becomes a mindset.
A mindset is a pattern of thinking that’s been developed by habitually thinking the same thoughts. It’s a default mode and it can be negative or positive, destructive or constructive.
Of course, the powerful truth is that you can change a mindset.
How To Completely Change Your Thinking
1. Develop Strong Boundaries
Building strong boundaries around your world will certainly help you correct wrong mindsets and develop healthy ones.
Garbage in, garbage out is an old tech term for what computers produce. However, it’s just as true with our thought life. So watch what you watch and consider what you read.
It’s vital to prune out unhelpful thoughts.
For instance, when I changed my mindset about flying dozens of times a year I pruned out all complaining thoughts.
I refused to complain about flight delays, airplane food, cramped seats or whatever. I adjusted my thinking and found myself actually looking forward to flights.
2. Thought Replacement
Thought replacement is simply replacing destructive, negative thoughts with Scripture. Learn to replace negative strains of thinking with ancient texts.
Whatever your mindset is, there is an appropriate text in the Bible:
Doubt and unbelief? Mark 11:22 have faith in God
Fearful and anxious? Psalm 56:3 what time I am afraid I will trust in You
Judgmental and suspicious? Matthew 7:7 judge not lest you be judged
Lustful and adulterous? Matthew 5:8 blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God
Angry and resentful? Ephesians 5:32 forgive one another as Christ has forgiven you
Confused mind? Proverbs 3:5-6 trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding
I have found this to be a cornerstone habit in changing my thinking. It’s helped me overcome a terrifying fear of flying, resist adultery, develop forgiveness and lift my faith to new heights.
3. Meditate On Scripture
Joshua 1:8 tells us that the person who meditates on the Word of God will lead a prosperous and successful life.
Once you discover a text that addresses your mindset keep meditating on it.
Hebrew meditation involved two faculties, the mind and the tongue.
The Hebrew word for meditation literally means to murmur, to mutter. When we engage verbally with Scripture we give it a stronger chance to enter into our world and change our mindset.
By the way, in Psalm 119 you will find an interesting correlation between meditating in and delighting in God’s Word.
As you read Scripture take the time to pause and mutter over the text and thus increase your love for it.
4. Access Professional Services
Sometimes mindsets of despair, depression and anxiety need professional help.
If you sense you are moving from normative levels of sadness to depression or suffering from overwhelming anxiety don’t be reluctant to utilise professional services.
Excellent resources are available at Beyond Blue and are a good starting point when considering accessing professional help.
When you know how to completely change your thinking your life I think you too will discover new places of hope and contentment.