I’m Not Smart Enough to Succeed
No matter what it is you want to achieve in life, what makes you happy, how you see God, how you deal with people or how you hope things are going to turn out – it all starts with your mind.
In this post, you’ll learn the skills you need to really take control of your own mind, thereby take control of how you view yourself in order to succeed.
Your mind – and your mindset more specifically – is responsible for how successful you are in any given career or pursuit, how you see God, how others see you, your health, your physical strength and even how happy you are with what you have accomplished.
Any change you want to create in your life starts with the decision to make that change. In essence, all change starts from within. It is your perception of that change that determines whether or not you are content with it.
Perception is how you see the world; your life, business or organization. It is the ability to see, hear or become aware of something through the senses. Your brain will take your perception; your belief system and make everything it sees, perceives or hears, fit that perception.
This is why it is imperative that you have the right perception and understanding of who you are, because if you don’t, you will always see yourself not succeeding.
If you start with a perception that is out of alignment with God, then absolutely everything else will head in the wrong direction.
Your perception drives your perspective, which is a particular attitude, a way of looking at something; a point of view, an outlook, a view point, a position, a stance, a frame of mind.
CBT, ‘cognitive behavioral therapy’, is a type of psychotherapeutic intervention. This asserts that our behavior is a result of our associations (this is behaviorism) and of our thought processes that actually allow us to reinforce an idea in our heads.
So, when faced with a stressful situation, you will be stressed partly because of the beliefs and associations, you hold regarding that situation.
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds;
In this Scripture, a stronghold is a system of thinking that formulates a persistent belief in a mistaken idea or concept.
In this stressful moment, most of the time you’ll start playing out what you expect to happen in your head based on a stronghold. And when this happens, areas of the brain fire almost as though that thing were really happening. You might imagine getting fired, having your house repossessed, or arguing with someone.
This then causes the release of even more stress hormones, just as though you were really in those situations and you can end up anxious, aroused and potentially less effective. This is where a lot of phobias come from, but it’s also what can make us less self-confident, less likely to take positive risks and generally less successful than we otherwise could be.
So, CBT aims to change this, partly by creating new associations and partly by changing the way you think and changing what you’re visualizing.
There’s more to it than that of course, but this is the central concept and the tools used to this end are collectively referred to as ‘cognitive restructuring’. The Bible calls it “the renewing of your mind.”
So, let’s say that you want to be calmer at work, be at peace with dealing with your finances to get out of debt or you want to overcome a fear of heights. How might you do that using CBT to pull down strongholds?
The first step would be to become more aware of your existing thoughts, beliefs and emotions.
You can do this in a number of ways. One common tool is journaling, whereby you keep a journal of your thoughts, feelings and emotions pertaining to the thing that frightens you. This way, you can really deconstruct the thought process that is leading to your fear or anxiety.
This is one practical way of destroying sophisticated arguments and every exalted and proud thing that sets itself up against the true knowledge of God, and how you take every thought and purpose captive, bringing it to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5 Amplified Bible).
Take some time to write down your belief about:
Ø How God sees you
Ø Being smart
Once you have the thoughts that make you stressed and you’re aware of what you’re visualizing – you can then go about deconstructing them and pull down any stronghold.
- For example, you may be afraid that your lack of education is holding you back; still others might fear financial failures or the responsibility money brings. You may have low self-esteem that might have originated from negative experiences. Where there is money there is greed and this concept of success could have been ingrained in you since your childhood in the form of fairy tales and stories of evil doers who harm good people for money. As a child, you might have seen your parents fight and squabble over money and grew up with negative thinking patterns about it.
What you don’t realize is that, by playing that negative video over and over in your head, it is strengthening those neural connections and coding the experience as ‘bad’ and ‘dangerous’ making the response stronger in future.
Let’s look at how the thought process works. There are 4 things you must know pertaining to your thoughts:
- What you say is a result of what you believe; your belief system.
- What you believe is a result of what you think; your thought process.
- What you think is a result of your knowledge; what are you studying or researching?
- Your knowledge is a result of your source; is it from God, self or Satan.
So now you’re going to unravel those beliefs and remove the negative ones; the strongholds. One way to do this is with ‘thought challenging’. Thought challenging essentially means that you’re going to really analyze your belief and decide if it might actually be true or not.
Ask yourself, where is the source of this belief coming from? Where did I learn this? Why am I thinking this way? Is what I’m saying Biblically sound and positive in nature?
So, if you’re afraid of not having enough education, financial failures or the responsibility money brings, you’re going to think about being confident in who you are, being wise with your money, start reading more and adopt a more positive attitude.
Do a Bible study on what God says about being His child, people with the same or similar problem, the source of the problem and see how God delivered them.
Now make sure you start thinking the way God wants you to think and not the way self or Satan wants you to think. The reality is this: you have the power to take control of your success, all you need to do is take the first step.
Now, take a look at the beliefs you wrote down and begin deconstructing them to see which are true and which are strongholds.
When you study the Bible concerning that situation or fear and apply what you’re being taught, you’ll create new associations, not only with God’s Word and having a Kingdom mentality, but also in your belief about who you are, thereby removing those old sin-natured associations and thought patterns.
Remember this: Your perception drives your perspective; your perspective drives your attitude; your attitude drives your behavior; your behavior develops your habits; and your habits lead to your success or lack thereof; your outcomes.
This is how you destroy the works of the enemy, renew your mind and live the Abundant Life God has for you!