It’s hard to get rid of a negative mindset that constantly clouds your thinking and steals your confidence. Learn how to defeat it with three powerful tips.
“Is pursuing this job the best thing right now?
“I have experience, but what if things are different here? Why can’t I have the confidence I think I should have?”
Doubts poured into my soul like cold coffee into the sink as I sat in the parking lot.
I wanted to get back into coaching basketball, and here was my chance. I felt like God was leading me to inquire about the open coaching position at a nearby school.
But I wavered as negative thoughts bounced around in my head.
Finally, I got out of my car, stepped slowly up the front stairs and slipped into the school office.
The woman at the counter seemed busy, uninterested in my request. “We’ve filled that position.” she simply stated.
“OK, thanks.” I faked a smile and scurried back to my car.
My State of Mind
“God, what was that?”
Maybe it hadn’t been God leading me after all. I had been expecting at least a positive reception, an interest in my skills… something more than a dead end.
“Why did you have me do that?”
Recently I’d been struggling with direction in my career endeavors like a grandpa driving with a foot on both pedals: Full speed ahead followed by a jarring stop.
(I know this first hand because my dear grandfather used to scare the living daylights out of my brother and I when we rode in his car).
When I wanted to move forward with a blog project, I’d get excited (full speed ahead).
But then negative thinking took over.
There’s another blogger doing that. She’ll think I’m copying her. Blogger B is doing xyz… maybe I should do that instead? But she’s so far ahead of me, I could never do that… I won’t make it that far… Others are better than me… Their book is better… Their blog is better… They have more followers…
On. And. On.
Negative thoughts, comparison, doubt.
It crippled me.
I didn’t believe the truth
Deep down, I thought I had nothing to offer anyone. I didn’t believe that in my head, but my heart was clouded by the lie that I couldn’t help anyone.
I couldn’t stop being negative in this area. So I faltered and flailed at blogging, my motivation rising and crashing like waves.
Now with the basketball job dead-end, I felt the weight of my negative mindset once again.
Take Action To Get Rid of Negative Thoughts
How do we grasp the truth? How do we overcome negative thoughts that stick to our souls like sap we can’t get off our hands?
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 says this:
For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
Taking thoughts captive is an action.
To gain a positive mindset, it’s not “just think about something else.” The unwanted thought will not go away, though it may hide for a bit.
Taking captive means locking up, forcing to go where you want it to go. Put behind bars. It’s not just will power.
It’s a spiritual battle.
We have to reject negative thoughts in Jesus’ name. He’s the one who has the power we need.
Light Bulb Moment
As I drove home from the school, I was mad. I had 20+ years experience coaching basketball, from kids camps to high school and college teams.
They have no idea how much experience I have. Coaches are always looking for help from experienced people. They don’t know the gold mine they just passed up. I have so much to offer.
A light bulb went on.
I DO have a lot to offer. Not just in basketball, but in blogging too.
Finally the truth rattled through me and hit bottom. I saw how I’d been living in doubt. I guess God needed to hit me somewhere obvious so I could see it elsewhere.
3 powerful ways to get rid of a negative mindset
Once I saw the truth, I couldn’t stop there. Here’s what I did, and what you can do to conquer a negative mindset:
1) Reject the lie
Right then and there, I rejected the lie in Jesus’ name.
I could see it plain as day that I’d been living in the fog. And I was done with it.
If you’re dealing with these types of thoughts, don’t stand for it any more. Don’t give the enemy one more inch of space in your mind and heart. Take captive every thought!
2) Receive the truth
A negative mindset loses power when we embrace what is true about our situation. I received the truth that I had something to offer.
God has given me experience, passion, and talents that allow me to do what He calls me to do, but I have to choose to receive that truth.
The Bible says we have EVERYTHING we need, but the enemy does not want us to believe it, to receive it, or grasp it.
2 Peter 1:3-4 says,
“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”
3) Remind yourself.
We need constant reminders of the truth in our lives to combat negative thinking.
- Post sticky notes with truth around your house
- Read an encouraging book
- Listen to uplifting music
- Meditate on positive mom affirmations
- Ask God to remind you of His truth throughout the day
When a negative mindset has you stopping and starting like a grandpa driving with a foot on both pedals, remember: You can get rid of discouraging thoughts and have the confidence to be who God made you to be.
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