I used to do this. I don’t know if it’s what a counselor would call it. But it goes like this.
A friend or relative approaches you with something. Maybe you’re child acts hurtfully toward their child. And they come to tell you. In the outside you act like it’s ok, maybe even thank them for letting you know.
But in the inside. Well, you start to spiral. You let your thoughts run wild. They must not like my kid. They must think I’m a horrible mom. They just said that to push us away. They don’t want to be friends with me.
The list goes on. Suddenly a week or two later you’ve convinced yourself they are no longer your friend and you have anxiety just thinking about possibly seeing them again.
Ever been there? Maybe you do it so often you don’t even realize you do it anymore. Maybe it’s just a natural cycle in your mind you’ve even convinced yourself that thought process is truthful.
It’s not. Please, take a moment and truly and honestly assess your thoughts. Do it daily. The Lord knew we’d do this.
He spoke to us through Paul in 2 Corinthians 10 about this very thing. “Take every thought captive to obey Christ.”
It’s not easy at first, believe me. You’ve been ingrained in a bad habit for a long time and there’s going to be a battle to get out of it. I remember having this battle.
At first it seems like every few minutes you have to assess your thoughts and take them captive. What does that mean? Well, for me it meant telling myself to stop thinking that thought and then actively replacing it with truth. It meant having a lost of verses written out in my kitchen, my bathroom, and by my bed. I’d have to take the thought captive and then read a verse or two and pray over it.
Most of my verses had to do with what God said about me and about who He is.
At first it may feel line you’re losing the battle and you might even grow weary. But having verses that talk about victory and keeping the end goal in mind of having a healthier mental state helps a lot.
When you spiral like that and let yourself do it, you’ll find you’ll lost friends, not because they actually don’t want to be your friend, but because you push them away with your negative thoughts. You create in your mind a huge problem when it’s really very small and would possibly require prayer or a quick conversation with that person.
Remember too, that you are in control of your thoughts. They don’t have to control you. And don’t use those spiraling thoughts as an excuse to run away from healthy conflict and conversation. Your relationships can actually be healthier and deeper if you are willing to admit you spiral and try to battle against it. More than likely your friends will want to know this struggle and will pray over you and with you! Instead of being isolated, you can find yourself in healthier, stronger community!
It’s all easier said than done, but it’s not impossible. Nothing is, with Jesus!