I find it easy to start down the path of self-focus and once I’ve started it can be very hard to pull back out. Dwelling on things I don’t have, things I want, attitudes I want to change, people I want to be more like, styles I wish I could pull off, confidence I wish I had, and stages in life I wish I was at are not healthy things to be focusing on. You see when I am so focused on the things I want to change or the things I wish I had, I’m fail to see all the blessings God has literally dumped in my lap! I live a blessed life (and I’m willing to bet that you do too!)!
This quote by Lewis is a great reminder that the key to humility and I would add contentment, is not to think less of yourself but just to think of yourself less. You see, we don’t need to think of yourself as worthless to gain humility because that’s absurd. God created you, sustains you, and cares for you so you are not worthless - but we shouldn’t be thinking of ourselves so much. Quite frankly there is so much else that we can be dwelling on and thinking about that it’s got to get kind of boring only thinking of ourselves.
Here are 5 ways that you can shift your focus from yourself:
1. Count your blessings!
I’m serious! Get out a pen and some paper and start writing a list of things that you have been blessed with. A family, husband, kids, home, breath, work, friends, etc. Write out at least 10 things and start thinking of all these people and things in your life instead of thinking of the things that you want.
2. Plan a special dinner for someone!
It’s always fun to be pampered and spoiled and it’s equally as fun (at least in my opinion) to plan a special evening with someone else in mind. Make a dinner or order out, buy some flowers, light some candles, turn on some music, and enjoy the night with a friend/husband/wife.
3. Get together with a friend!
I don’t know about you, but when I get together with other people my day is usually better for it. There’s something about seeing another person’s smile and hearing laughter that is just contagious! So call up a friend and plan a time to get together. It can be as simple as getting a cup of coffee together.
4. Visit someone in a nursing home!
While many nursing homes are wonderful places, there’s still something magical about getting a visitor from “the outside” - like a fresh breeze to those living there. Besides being a breath of fresh air to those inside, talking with someone older than yourself does wonders to shift your perspective and cause you to see life from another person's eyes.
5. Write a note to a friend!
Hand written notes are not seen too often anymore, but I know that they are still one of the most treasured pieces of mail ever to receive (if you haven’t received a hand written note in a while let me know and I can fix that for you!). So write a note to a friend and in doing so you start to think about their life and how you can encourage them instead of dwelling on yourself.
These are just a few ideas that popped into my head, but I know there are a ton more that could be added to this short list. What are ways you deal with self-focus? I’d love to have more ideas!!
I'm Michelle. Wife to a dashing servant-hearted man, mother to two under two, and making our 900 square foot house our home.