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Counselorâs Corner: Why Should We Focus on Those Things That Are Good, Lovely, a Good Report, and Praiseworthy?

by stephanie reck  
9/28/2021 / Christian Living


Most Christians are familiar with the scripture Philippians 4:8: Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is praiseworthy, think on such things.


However, for many, focusing on what is right versus wrong or negative is something we believe that we can’t change. This is simply not true! Neuroplasticity is the mind’s ability to change the brain. We have the ability to change what we think. You can train your brain to begin to focus on those things that are good, lovely, a good report, and praiseworthy.


Tip: For the next 21 days in a row write out 3 to 5 new things that you are grateful for. At the end of the 21 days, you will have trained your brain to start scanning your environment for those things that are good, lovely, a good report, and praiseworthy.


When we habitually practice gratitude we can get high flows of reward-related neurotransmitters like dopamine. Research suggests that when people practice gratitude, they experience a general alerting and brightening of the mind.


When we think about those things that are good, lovely, a good report, and praiseworthy, the neurotransmitter, serotonin is released in the brain. Serotonin is the hormone that improves mood and a sense of well-being. Focusing on the negative can lead to slower brain functioning and depression.


You don’t deny reality. If something in your life is difficult, admit it, work through it, then intentionally find the good in your challenges. The situation may not be good, but perhaps you have gotten stronger or are more compassionate because of your struggles.


If you have gotten yourself in the habit of thinking negative or pessimistic, you can learn to rewire your brain to think more on those things like in Philippines 4:8. It will take some practice and discipline, but before long your thoughts will focus on seeing the good.

Stephanie R. Reck, LMSW, LBT, BCCC
Founder of Hope Ministry
[email protected]
Hope Ministry, @2021
Author of, "Disciplining Your Mind 30 Days to a Better You!"

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