Archives For Anxiety

goal-setting-feature

Note: I’m late posting this article from Christmas Eve, but the message remains the same. I hope it helps you.

It’s Christmas Eve, 2017. Do you know what that means? It means that it’s almost January first!

I’m not a proponent of New Year’s Resolutions; not at all. Resolutions rarely work. I won’t bore you with all the scientific details, but there are actually physiological reasons for the failure of resolutions.

Resolutions rarely work because we stand up tall, square our shoulders, and declare to ourselves that we resolve that next year will be different because we resolve to accomplish something; and it’s usually the same something we declared last year. Then something happens. It’s called life. As life happens, those spoken resolutions fade into the blur of a fast-moving calendar and everything that comes with it. But for the most part, those resolutions are forgotten until December 31 of the next year.

I am a believer in having goals and that leading up to January is a good time to review, renew, and establish goals. What’s the difference? Honestly, I’m not totally sure; but hang in here with me.

I believe in establishing goals. Goals are life targets. However, there are problems with goals, too. Goals can be forgotten. I have an application on my devices called Evernote. The cool thing about Evernote is that you never lose anything you put into it. Word recognition makes it almost if not entirely impossible for anything to be lost. Scan a document in and it will recognize the words in that document. Simply type some words into the search bar and every note and document you have that includes that word will appear.

Recently in Evernote I typed “goals” into the search bar. Goals that I had typed into Evernote as far back as 2012 came to the surface. With those goals came some disappointment. I had typed them into a note and forgotten them. Why would I forget an important goal? Because life happened and, well, I forgot.

Why is it so easy to forget? Life! Looking back at my goals from 2012, I found one of my goals that I didn’t totally achieve but I didn’t forget it, either. I set a goal in 2012 to read fifty-two books. I do believe in reading, but fifty-two books is not a goal that I necessarily recommend. I didn’t forget that goal to read all of those books because it was always in front of me. Every day, my current book was there for me to pick up. On my desk there were always three or four books that were in the bullpen just waiting for their turn. As I started reading one book, I ordered another. I didn’t read fifty-two books in 2012, but I did read thirty-four, which is pretty good and most importantly, I never forgot the goal because it was in front of me.

Lately I’ve been thinking again about my goals and that 2012 goal to read fifty-two books. So, I’m approaching the year with a new, untested goal- tracking system. I bought myself a cheap journal. It’s one of the spiral bound type that almost looks like your typical high school composition book.

Here is the untested system.

First, I wrote my goals on the first two pages of the journal. Remember, some scientists say that the action of writing makes the information more concrete, mentally. Now every morning as I have my quiet time, I read from the Bible, pray, listen to a podcast, read a few pages from my current read, and I re-write my goals. That’s right! The plan is that everyday of this next year, I will rewrite my goals. I will also add notes such as, “goal completed” and “goal dropped”; or I may write a note to explain what I will do on that day to help myself achieve that goal. We’ll see how it goes.

W Clemet Stone said, “No matter how carefully you plan your goals, they will never be more than pipe dreams unless you pursue them with gusto.”

Finally, here are a few goal-setting pointers:
1. Write you goals down.
2. Read or rewrite your goals daily.
3. Be willing to edit your goal list. You may find that your priorities will change as the year goes by.
4. Act! Do something to make your goals a reality.

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Photo by Jeff Scurlock

I’ve never been able to quite grasp the hardness of life. You know, life is hard and on a purely human level I do not  understand it. I’m sure a lot of it is because I’m a spoiled westerner.

Some days I blame poor emotions and struggles on the weather. It doesn’t help when the sun is hidden behind cold gray clouds that hover over cold, drizzly dampness.  But what about the days when the sun is shinning, the air is crisp and there may even be the sound of singing birds? What’s up with that? Why can’t those days always be upbeat and happy?

The human emotions are a puzzle. I’m no doctor and have no scientific knowledge of the interworking of the human brain.  I’ve heard words like hormones, depression, happy, sad, joy, joyless, etc., etc.,.

I love those days when everything seems right, those days when the body feels strong, energetic, rested and ready.  I love it when I feel the emotion of happiness and peacefulness.

As a follower of Christ I find myself hanging onto His Words.  Things like “in this world you will have tribulation but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”  For me that means that everything that wages war against my emotions and my physical well being has already be taken care of.  Yes I have to deal with the heat of the battle. Jesus said that I would have tribulation.  I have to deal with the swinging of my emotions but I also hang on to those words, “I have overcome the world.”

As a child of God I’m an overcomer. It matters not what my emotions say. I’m an overcomer. My responsibility is to remind myself of that. To wage a war of positive faith on those things that try to drag me down.

Proverbs says that “the power of life and death is in the tongue and that they that love it will eat it’s fruit.”  What does that mean? It means that I’ve got to push through the negative emotions and crazy hormones to speak faith into my life.  When my emotions say gloom and despair my mouth needs to say joy and hope. When my emotions say defeat my mouth needs to say victory.  When my emotions say death my mouth needs to say life.  Don’t forget that as a believer that when you speak positive things in life it’s not some new age, mind over matter babble.  It’s the mouth of a believer speaking what their God says. Putting faith in Him not our words.

If your struggling today with depression, hormones out of whack, down in the dumps, discouragement etc..  Hang in there.  If you need the help of a physician, get it.  Have a relationship with Jesus, read His Word, speak His Word.  Remember, as a believer, your already an overcomer. Sometimes you just have to remind yourself of that.

 

My book, Eye of A Needle would be a help for you during difficult times. It’s only .99 in the Kindle store.

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worry

Are you stressed out? Are you stressed because you’re worried about something? You’re not alone. Worry is a real problem in the lives of “Most” people.

The Bible is very clear when it comes to worry.  In his letter to the Philippians in chapter 4 the Apostle Paul said, “Don’t worry about anything.”  What? That’s right. He said not to worry. It’s easier said than done. I’ve come to grips with the fact that it’s not about not worrying as much as it is about what to do when you are worried.

Worry is an enemy.  It’s an unfruitful waste of time. When you think about it, worry is unreasonable. What do I mean? You’ve never changed a circumstance by worrying about it. Worry is also unhealthy. Medical articles are replete with evidence that worry damages your health.

So here is what you should do when your worried.

  • Make a decision that based on the previous evidence that you refuse to worry. It’s not enough but it’s a start.
  • Pray about it.  Philippians 4:6  Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.   Pray about the very thing that you are worried about. Take it to Jesus and mix your prayer with praise for the answer.Allow the peace of God to take control of your thoughts.
  • Change what your thinking about. Stop thinking about worry and start focusing on good things. Philippians 4:8  …. brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Does it sound too easy? Does it sound too easy to be true? I dare you to try it. It sure beats being worried.

Here are a couple of good books that will help you in the quest to overcome worry.

The Battlefield of The Mind, Joyce Meyer

The Battlefield of The Mind Devotional, 100 Insights That Will Change The Way You Think, Joyce Meyer

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