A Healthy Mind

mental health No Comments

     One of the best books that I have read in 2010 is Tommy Newberry’s book, titled, The 4:8 Principle.  Newberry develops the book on Philippians 4:8 where Paul writes, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”  Newberry focuses on the power of the mind to impact one’s joy and peace.  He gives seven strategies for a healthy mind.  Are you willing to junk-proof your mental environment?  Follow these strategies.
     1.  Focus on right relationships.  In life, it is far easier to be pulled down than lifted up.  Are you being shaped by the right people?  Do the people around you settle for good enough or challenge you to stretch and grow?  Negative people poison your outlook, exhaust your energy, chip away at your potential for joy (p. 151).  If you associate with people who constantly whine, complain, condemn, and commiserate, then, the inescapable fact is sooner or later you will resemble them.  Form relationships with people who can help build you up and challenge you to grow.
     2.  Memorize Scripture.  Newberry states, “Your conscious mind can hold only one thought at a  time, positive or negative.  The only way to eliminate a negative or counter productive thought is to replace it with a positive, empowering thought” (p. 155).  Learn a new passage of Scripture every week.
     3.  Personalize Bible Passages.  Some to consider:  John 10:10, 2 Tim. 1:7, Psa. 46:1 and Rom. 12:2.
     4.  Affirm God’s Goodness.  To affirm God’s goodness means to declare with conviction the goodness, abundance, and joy God has promised and provided.  Positive self-talk and positive prayer help build good mental health.  Focus on what God is doing right now.  Remember what God has done.  Replace negative self-talk with positive self-talk. 
     5.  Visualize God’s blessings.  Picture what God wants you to become.  A clear vision for the future is a key prerequisite for reaching your full potential here on earth.  Spiritual success is not an accident.
     6.  Quarantine Negativity.  Schedule your negativity (p. 164).  It takes all of the fun out of being negative.   You weaken the emotional energy it contains.  You are better prepared to deal with it.  The problem often shrinks.  You safe guard a much larger block of time that is free to focus on positive things. Schedule a worry time, say Tuesday at 4:00 p.m.  Any time you have a worry thought, write it down and address it only during your worry time.  Schedule “issue time.”  Deal with issues during this time only.  Do negativity by appointment only.
     7.  Establish Some Ground Rules.  The ground rules revolve around the principle of input/output.  Be aware of your environment.  Closely observe your associations.  When you say yes to the wrong inputs, you are, by default, saying no to the right inputs.  The opposite of this is also true.  All inputs contribute to who you become as a person.  Over time, you will draw into your life the conditions, events, people, and possibilities that correspond to your thinking.
     A healthy mind serves up thoughts that release your full potential.  A healthy mind keeps your attention on your intention.  A healthy mind produces joy like a healthy body produces energy.  A healthy mind agrees with God’s precepts and promises.  A healthy mind craves direction, growth, and challenge (pp. 147-148).  
     Remember the proverb, “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he…” (Prov. 23:7).