Have you ever felt discouraged at the outcome? Or maybe you tried something many times only to get rejected still? Maybe the person you thought would definitely “have your back” said “no”. Discouragement can play out in many ways but the sting of it can penetrate us to the core.
First of all, it stops us from moving forward by fixating our thoughts on the past and what didn’t work. We become entranced on who said “no” and why we are not good enough. Once we allow our minds to rehash that negative self-talk long enough, we find ourselves stuck, scared and unable to move.
Discouragement causes us to look at the rearview mirror and what was better 3 months ago, 3 years ago or even 30 years ago. Surely, it would be better to just go back to how things were.
Discouragement creates a sense of confusion. We feel as though we had it all together and had a great plan of how our lives would play out only to discover, that plan didn’t work. The discouragement sets in and we toy with the idea of how do we move forward? Or do settle for where we are and deal with the ongoing frustration?
From this dialogue, we can see how deadly discouragement can be to our faith. It sabotages our goals by removing our courage to keep going. It can kill our dreams. It can stifle our creativity. It can allow us to wallow in mediocrity. It can lead us to live a sub-par life. It can allow us to go in circles and never accomplish anything.
So how do we silence the voice of discouragement?
- Use positive self-talk. Replace the negative thoughts with positive ones. Meditate on the positive thoughts until you truly believe them and they are a regular part of your vocabulary and thought process.
- Don’t dwell on and rehash the past. You have been given a gift of 24 hours today. What will you do with those precious hours? Will you waste energy mulling over something you cannot change or will you muster the strength to take a step towards your goal.
- Remove confusion by replacing it with clarity. Clarity and direction comes from spending time with God and following His instructions. It also comes from removing unnecessary clutter (i.e. people, relationships, junk, time wasters, negativity, etc.) from your life so you can see the beautiful picture of your life.
Next time that nagging thought of “I told you that wouldn’t work out…” or “you should just be glad for where you are instead of….”, turn those thoughts around, silence the negative voice and choose to move forward in faith. You can do it!
~Coletta Jones Patterson
*For more inspiration on your journey, check out my latest book, “Developing Faith that Wins: Stories of My Journey” available at https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Developing+Faith+that+Wins. Connect with me at firstname.lastname@example.org to share inspirational stories along your journey or to work with me as your Personal Development Coach.