Tuesday, Jun 2, 2020

Renew Your Mind: 4 Ways to Give Your Brain a Break

Renewal of our minds can happen over and over again. It's okay.

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Alecia M. White
Alecia M. Whitehttps://www.aleciathewriter.com/
Author, blogger, lover of coffee, and all things Jesus. By profession, Alecia is a teacher and administrator. She recently published her first book "The Thing Is...", a poignant look at suffering and endurance. She is privileged to share her love for Christ through her writing.

Since we have been on a national time out – I mean in quarantine – I have been watching quite a bit more television than I normally would, as have some of you (I won’t tell). No worries though, I have found balance and haven’t been consumed by Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, or Disney Plus (yes, I have all the subscriptions, judge your cable service).

I have my specific times when I watch TV, which is usually at night, and I have times that I ignore the fact that there are televisions in the house. So, this isn’t about my watching too much TV.

Actually, what I have learned is what my brain can handle, and how much.

You see, there are some shows that I can watch for hours on end and there are some that I have to break from after a couple of episodes. It’s as if the drama starts to get to me and I can’t stand it anymore.

The same thing happens when I watch the news. At one point, I found myself all tangled up in the Netflix show “All American”. Yes, it’s good, but I found that about every three episodes, I was spent. I felt as if all of my heartstrings were intertwined with the characters and I wanted to solve all their problems. So goes the life of an empath.

After 3 episodes I had to change my focus by way of a different show, a book, walk, anything other than what was happening in the life of Spencer James (show’s main character). Now, it isn’t just that show, there are a few others that get to me. All their issues seem to make my brain hurt and weigh on me. This is probably why I can’t get with reality TV, which is probably for the best.

Know When to Renew Your Mind

renew your mindI have figured out that the same thing happens in my everyday life. There are situations that, after so long, I begin to shut down and need to step away. It took a while for me to understand that I’d just had enough for that moment. I just felt like I had to see everything through until it was completely resolved, but I wasn’t built for drama. Even when helping someone else, I needed to learn when to walk away.

I mean, it’s good, necessary even, to be there for others, but not to your own detriment.

The same goes for you. You must learn when your tolerance level hits that wall. If you are in a situation but you’ve tapped out, you are no good to whoever is on the other side.

Pay attention to yourself when you get to the point of “Whatever, I don’t care anymore.” It may stop you from making a rash decision or resenting yourself or others.

So, What’s the Play Call?

I know it can be easy to get caught up in the drama surrounding you or the people you care about, but please remember these things in order to renew your mind:

  1. God can give you relief. No matter how heavy the circumstance may seem or how deep into the situation you may feel, God can handle it. “From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” Psalms 61:2
  2. Block out the noise. Yep, turn off that “television”, which can actually be whoever is calling you for advice. It is imperative that you hear from the Creator before you can properly be the giver. “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalms 46:10
  3. It’s OK to take the time to clear your mind. The mind can be a dangerous battlefield if we aren’t careful with how we manage it. By manage, I mean what we allow to occupy that space between our ears. This is why our transformation comes once our minds are renewed by Christ. I think it is important to note that renewing isn’t a one-time thing – renewal is always available to us. “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Romans 12:2
  4. Have intentionally good thoughts. I say this because there have been times when my mind was so clogged with everybody’s everything that I had to stop and force myself to think about better things – vacation, food, clouds, all of that. “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Philippians 4:8

The mind is a lot more fragile than we treat it. Overstimulation is real. Give your brain a break and let God renew you. Block out the external factors long enough for Him to enter your train of thought. Let Him give your mind rest. 


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