Recently I came across this sentence: “There are no limitations to the mind except those we acknowledge.”1
This is something I unconsciously knew for a long time.But over the last couple of years I`d had the blessing to make it a conscious awareness. Creating the conscious awareness of not accepting limitations is what I believe one of the most powerful life tools to apply. It`s the tool of disciplining our focus on what can be and not only on what`s happening right now.
For my thirtieth birthday, I thought it would be fun to run 30 kilometres on the day as a fundraiser. Physically speaking there was absolutely no reason to do it. Over the years, in many different aspects of life, I’ve heard, “you can`t do it”, “that won’t happen for you”, even “you won`t ever walk again”.
Also my body has been through about 40 operations, several lung infections and up to 4500 dialysis treatments! That alone means I shouldn`t be able to run! Yet I`ve done it! Why? Because I learned early in my life that the predictions of others don`t really matter. As soon as someone told me “You can`t” or “That won`t happen for you”, I started to replace that with positive thoughts like “I can” or “It will happen to me”. So I applied the same principle to the run.
I was aware that I might do myself physical harm by running 30 km. But I also knew that I had control over my mind and could develop thoughts that said this 30 km run could be done no matter what my physical state was.
The moment I started to prepare myself mentally, which meant developing thoughts about making it possible and seeing myself hitting the 30 km line, I got so much drive within me that I started to train more and more!
I believe that many of our limitations exist because we so easily acknowledge them in our mind.
The Bible gives us a great scripture in Proverbs 23:7: “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.” (KJV) The Hebrew word here for heart is ‘nephesh’2, which can also be translated as ‘mind’. In another words, the thoughts we acknowledge have an effect on our lives.
I believe, as God is unlimited, He has given us the free will to create a life without limits. But, creating a life without limits starts with the responsibility of forming and acknowledging right or positive thoughts.
I would like to give you two practical steps of how I apply this in my life.
1. Be aware of what you think
Thoughts can either be good or negative and often one perspective can dominate. In general, I need to be aware of what kind of dominating thoughts I allow. For example, I might constantly think about fear when public speaking. I can either nurture that thought or destroy it by creating a new thought, such as “I`m a really good public speaker”, or “I can make a really big difference by changing peoples’ lives with my words”.
Being aware of thinking positive thoughts is like looking after a plant. If we don`t water and nurture the plant, it will most likely die in time. Our mind is the same. We need to continually be aware of and nurture our positive thoughts otherwise negative thoughts dominate. That domination can go on for years, until we end up with a constantly negative outlook, a complaining spirit, unhappiness or even, as I`ve noticed within my own family, experience sickness.
2. Nurture your positive thoughts, even in a difficult circumstance.
Many psychologists today agree that many illnesses come about due to having a negative perspective of life. Our thoughts and beliefs are formed from what one sees, hears, feels and experiences – both the good and bad things.
I like what the Bible says in 2 Corinthians 5:7: “For we walk by faith, not by sight [living our lives in a manner consistent with our confident belief in God’s promises]” (AMP)
In another words, we can move from thoughts based on what we see, hear or feel right now, to thoughts about what hasn`t been fulfilled yet – God`s promise. His promise is healing, provision, breakthrough, restoration, joy, righteousness, hope, peace and love.
If we acknowledge His promise with our thoughts, then life can be lived without limits!
I hope this blog has inspired and empowered you to acknowledge God`s promise instead of current limitations. Not acknowledging the limitations and nurturing the right and positive thoughts is not going to be easy but it’s worth it. Life will be so much more worth living!
Get in touch with me here if you would like more help or information about this topic. I’d love to coach you further in this area.