Most people I know struggle with their inner dialog or self-talk. What you may not realize is how important self-talk is to your health.
Many people suffer with some form of self-doubt. They wonder if they’re really enough. A man wonders if he’s competent enough. A woman wonders if she’s attractive enough.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Self-Talk”]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
For men, the question is more external. A man says to himself: “Can I come through when it really matters? Will people approve of what I’ve done? Will I be recognized for my accomplishments or acknowledged for my competence?”
For women, it’s more internal. A woman wonders: “Am I beautiful? Will anyone notice me? “Will anyone pursue me? Am I worth pursuing?”
For those of us pursuing vibrant health and abundant life, we must answer these questions in a positive fashion.
Nutrition is important. We are what we eat. However, we’re also products of what’s taking place in our minds. Our thoughts are important as well.
In this series on intermittent fasting, we’ve focused on the physical benefits up to this point. We’re going to shift gears a little bit with this post and talk about how intermittent fasting can benefit our souls or our mental / emotional health.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Intermittent Fasting for the Soul”]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
The bible tells us to “guard your heart” Why? Because it’s ready to sin on a moments notice? No!.. Because our hearts are where we find real life. (Proverbs 4:23) So, we should treat our hearts like we would a treasure, or our most precious possession. When we do, it’s life giving.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Your Heart is You”]Created in Canva[/featured-image]
We must hang on to this truth because it has huge implications for our health. Most of us are familiar with Proverbs 4:23 above. But, many are not as familiar with the couple of verses that precede that statement. They have everything to do with our physical health.
We are instructed:
“My son, give attention to my words; Incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your sight; Keep them in the midst of your heart. For they are life to those who find them And health to all their body.” (Proverbs 4:20-22)
If we are to expect physical health, and vitality, we’ve got to get this spiritual concept right. It’s a matter of having an accurate self image. We must see ourselves as God sees us. When we do, we’ll be in much better positions to maintain, or even recover our health.
Good heart health means believing when God looks into our hearts, he doesn’t see darkness and sin. He sees the women and men we are capable of becoming in him. He sees our true glory. We must see ourselves this way as well, free from any form or self-condemnation, or self-deprecation.
Our beliefs and thoughts are crucial to maintaining or recovering our health. There is a well-established mind-body connection. Most would not argue with the idea that our thoughts affect our health. [featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Ask The Right Questions”]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
However, the logical question that follows is: “What should we believe and think to maximize our chances of recovering our health? ….READ MORE[callout]What we think and believe is crucial to our physical well-being. See my post: Pay Attention To The Placebo Effect.[/callout]
At a sub-conscious level, there may be beliefs in place that motivate us to remain sick. To help uncover these limiting beliefs, I suggest three critical questions that anyone seeking to maintain, or recover their health should ask himself or herself.
If any of these three questions are not answered properly, they’ll be severe impediments to one’s health. Remember, it’s not what we say that matters, but what we actually believe.
It’s our beliefs that determine our thoughts. And through the mind-body connection, our beliefs will ultimately affect our physical well-being.[Tweet “”Our beliefs will ultimately affect our physical well-being.” David Sandstrom”]
Do you want to be well? When Jesus healed the paralytic at the Bethesda pool in John 5, the first thing he said to him was: “Do you want to be well?” (John 5:6 ) At first glance this sounds strange, even a bit sarcastic.
However, Jesus knew exactly what he was doing. Jesus didn’t’ simply want to heal the man physically. He wanted to make him more whole, by freeing him from a limiting belief system.
There are likely many reasons someone may not actually want to become well. Maybe they’re finally receiving the sympathy that was missing in their childhood. Maybe a disability check would stop if they recover their health. Maybe they’ll have to get a job if they become well again.
I can’t say what it may be for you, but if you’re dealing with a health challenge, I recommend you do some soul searching, and see if there may be some underlying motivation for you to remain sick. What do you receive as a result of being sick?
Do you believe you can be well? This one is huge. If someone doesn’t believe it’s possible to get well, they likely won’t.
Imagine this scenario. A woman has a lump in her breast; she goes to her doctor, and he runs a biopsy. The test results come back positive. She has stage four cancer.
Her doctor calls her in to the office and says something like this: “I’ve got your test results; I’m afraid its cancer. It’s in an advanced stage, and the cancer has metastasized throughout your body. I give you four months to live. Go home and get your affairs in order.”
This doctor planted the belief that she cannot get well. If this woman accepts what her doctor says as absolute truth, the results could be devastating. In order to start her journey toward recovery, she needs to reject this kind of pronouncement, and say: “That doctor is full of sh _ t, and I’m going to beat this.
I would suggest that to varying degrees, every cancer survivor, or anyone that has beat an “incurable” disease has to say, or come to believe something similar. They have to believe they can recover. It is a virtual necessity.
Do you believe you deserve to be well? This one is more subtle, but can absolutely be a major block to healing. If we believe that we don’t deserve to be well, then it’s a slippery slope to the conclusion that we can’t be well.
An incorrect, or distorted self-image can lead to illness, or block our recovery from illness. Don’t be too quick to dismiss this thought. There is an awful lot of false guilt in the church today.
Again, there are perhaps many forms of this, depending on the individual person, and their life experience. Some may think that God is somehow punishing them for what they’ve done. These are false beliefs. God stands ready to forgive. (1 John 1:9)
Some may be thinking: “Good health is for other people; my lot in life is to be a sickly person.” In this case, there is likely some spiritual warfare going on. See my four-part series on spiritual warfare and health: The Secret To Finding Abundant Life.
It doesn’t matter how we came to the conclusion that we don’t deserve to be well. If we want to maintain and/or recover our health, we must believe the truth that we deserve to be well.[callout]To read the bible verses. Read From Your Browser and hover over the verse reference.[/callout]
We must learn to love ourselves well enough to accept the idea that we deserve vibrant health.
Consider the following truths:
You are precious, and valuable. (Genesis 1:27) You are loved and pursued by God. (Jeremiah 31:3) You are exquisitely, and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14) You are the apple of God’s eye. (Zechariah 2:8) (Psalm 17:8) Jesus hung naked, and bloody on a cross and died for you. (Philippians 2:8) You’ve been crowned with glory and honor. (Hebrews 2:6-7) God is working in, and through you, for his good pleasure. (Philippians 2:13) And, if Jesus is your Lord, you are forgiven. (1 John 1:9) (Hebrews 10:17)
God placed you here at this time in human history. (Acts 17:26) You are God’s masterpiece. He put you here for a reason, and he has work for you to do. (Ephesians 2:10) Doesn’t it make sense that his desire is that you have the vitality necessary to accomplish those purposes? (3 John 1:2)
Let these truths sink in, and ask yourself: Is there anything that would disqualify me from enjoying vibrant health? Do I deserve to be well?….
Next week we’ll dig deeper into our identity in Christ by defining the believer’s heart.
Medical doctors are trained to apply the “gold standard” for scientific research when it comes to accepting an hypothesis as truth. What is that gold standard? The double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Placebo”]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
When I make the claim that our beliefs, and our thoughts affect our health, the natural question to ask is: “Where’s the double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial that supports your conclusions?”
Well, how about every clinical trial that’s ever been done! Every clinical trial, across all disciplines, must take into account the placebo effect.
Approximately 1/3 of the participants in clinical trials given a sugar pill, or some other inert substance, actually experience the outcome the researchers hope to demonstrate with the new drug or procedure.
Drug companies must demonstrate that the new drug is more effective than the placebo effect, or the FDA won’t grant approval. Consequently, researchers would love it if the placebo effect would go away, but it won’t.
The placebo effect is always present. Rather than trying to dismiss it, I suggest we explore it more.Continue reading
Few things have more potential to improve our health than practicing forgiveness. Forgiveness brings a supernatural peace, and peace lowers our stress levels. Any time we lower our stress levels, we improve our health.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Forgiveness”]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
Everyone enjoys receiving forgiveness, but most are reluctant to extend forgiveness. We don’t forgive for the other person’s sake. We do it for our own sakes. Withholding forgiveness is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.
Our thoughts affect our health because of the mind-brain-body connection. Our minds are in control of our thoughts and our thoughts affect how our brains function. Our brains in turn affect our bodies.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”thoughts affect our health”]image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
Our stress response or fight or flight reflex will activate our innate immune system. This is great for an emergency, but also sets off a cascade of harmful effects in the body….
In the last post we covered what it looks like to be an energy drainer. If you haven’t read that post click this link: How’s Your Energy? Part 1[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”How’s Your Energy part 2″]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
Just as negative energy has the power to compromise our health, positive energy has the potential to dramatically improve our health and well-being. So, let’s focus on becoming energy gainers…..Continue reading
We’ve all experienced it. We spend some time with someone and after few minutes we feel drained and depleted. We can’t wait to get away from them. Why is this so?[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Energy Drainer vs Energy Gainer”]Image from Dollar Photo Club Created in Canva[/featured-image]
I would suggest that these people are energy drainers. Some people are real life energy vampires. No one deliberately becomes an energy drainer. But, somehow they become one. And they’re usually unaware of it. The following are ten characteristics to help you recognize if you’ve slid down this slippery slope…..
Real health is much more than what most people think. Real health is not simply the absence of disease.[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Real Health”]Image from Shutterstock Created in Canva[/featured-image]
Many people believe something like this: “I’m basically a healthy person. I haven’t been to the doctor in I don’t know know long. Sure, I’m a little down on energy in the mornings… and the afternoon but nothing a couple cups of FiveBucks coffee can’t take care of.” I would suggest that that, is not a state of real health…..Continue reading