Choose Your Focus

If you can see it, you can be it.

We tend to head in the direction we are looking. A young man I know went through school for race driving. When you’re racing, it is easy to get on a collision course toward some obstacle. In racing school, they taught my young friend to NOT look at the obstacle, but rather choose the open area he WANTS to head toward and focus on that. They told him that whereever you are focusing, your brain automatically steers in that direction.

Wow, that’s a powerful psychological principle that we can make work FOR us instead of against us. Similar to how the racing teachers taught my young friend how to harness the power of psychological instincts, we can apply that principle in more practical ways than racing cars. For example, last night I was mentoring a teenage man (yes, I said teenage man, quit thinking of yourself as a child, it’s gross) who is convinced he is addicted to nicotine (even though he hasn’t had any in months and he’s fine) and he believes he will have to smoke or vape all his life. He has a tendency to let his thoughts and conversations drift toward nicotine very easily. I stopped him in mid sentence and pointed out how much he was talking about nicotine. I asked him to pause, close his eyes, and picture his life in 5 to 10 years. He will be 26, he has a wife and kids, he is nicotine free, his kids are growing up in a nicotine free home, he goes jogging every morning with his dog and has no trouble breathing. It’s a great life. I encouraged him to start MAKING his mind focus on that picture every time he finds himself talking or thinking a lot about nicotine. Why? Because if he can SEE it, he can BE it.

What about you? What’s a dream you have that you dare not let yourself dream about very much? How about letting yourself take time out regularly to daydream about it, calling up the image of your success, creating that picture intentionally in your mind, let yourself see the details play out. God gave you an imagination for a reason, and I think this is part of that reason!

Be careful letting yourself use the imagination God gave you for wicked things or even for problem-based thinking. A lot of people spend WAY more time thinking about their problems and obstacles than they do thinking about solutions. Is it any wonder a person doing that stays STUCK? Admitting problems or obstacles is good, but only if we start moving beyond them and use the mind we have to imagine our solutions!

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