“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you are right” – Henry Ford
I don’t know much about Henry Ford, but this statement indicates that he understood the impact that thoughts can have in living a productive life. When the stay-at-home order was in place and I worked from home, I spent some time listening to a podcast series related to both the brain and the mind. I found it fascinating to learn about the science and theory of the brain (the physical organ) and the mind (thoughts), along with the impact nutrition, stress, and exercise can have on both.
Our thoughts, especially thoughts repeated over an extended period of time, can change the physical structure of our brain for better or worse. During these current times of racial tensions, a global pandemic, and stock market volatility, it is beneficial to be purposeful about managing our thoughts. Thoughts left unchecked could result in damaged relationships, imprudent financial choices, or poor mental health, among other negative effects.
Below are two of my favorite verses from the Bible related to our thoughts:
- “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” – Proverbs 4:23
- “Take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” – 2 Corinthians 10:5
These verses inform us of the active role we play, both defensive and offensive, when it comes to managing our thoughts. Practically speaking, we are to “capture” our thoughts, examine them, and decide what to do with them. I think that the apostle Paul sums it up best in Philippians 4:8: “Friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse” (The Message). What have your thought patterns been during these current times and are there any thought patterns that need to be captured? You don’t need to reply to us as you answer this question, but I wanted to encourage the process of managing your thoughts.