One of my favorite blogs is Young House Love. I dream of being as talented as these two are. We’ve lived in our home for nearly two years, and every wall is still builder’s white. It’s not for lack of inspiration. For $10, I made over our front patio from BLAH to INVITING. And last night enjoyed the PEACE while reading my new book! I’ll get to the ANTs in a minute.
Patio Makeover! Look closely in the before picture, do you see the ANTs?
Evening sun on the patio!
2. Wooden Table (needs to be stained badly, was in our garage) $0
3. Ivy Plant (in our storage room, put it there when HGTV told me that fake plants were “out”) $0
4. Indoor/Outdoor Pillows (on clearance at Marshall’s) $10
5. Flowers (from my Mom & Dad, they got them at Aldi’s) $0
6. Flower Stand (upside down garbage can) $0
Total Cost: $10!
And now, on to the ANTS!
Ants enjoying the peace on our patio!
Automatice Negative Thoughts
(automatic negative thoughts)
ANTs are negative thoughts that pop in our head throughout the day. They are automatic, because, most of us, don’t give thinking a second thought. In my article 10 Things You Can Do Today (to live healthier in mind, body & spirit), number five is to Think and Say Things on Purpose. Our thoughts are so powerful, they actually cause chemicals to be released in our brain. Good thoughts, feel good chemicals, bad thoughts, feel bad chemicals.
In the book Change Your Brain, Change Your Body, Dr. Daniel Amen, devotes a whole chapter to addressing the effects ANTs have on our body. There are 9 “species” of ANTs that can steal our happiness and ruin our health:
- “Always” thinking: thinking in words like always, never, no one, every one, every time, everything.
- Focusing on the negative: only seeing the bad in a situation.
- Fortune telling: predicting the worst possible outcome to a situation.
- Mind reading: believing that you know what another person is thinking, even though they haven’t told you.
- Thinking with your feelings: believing negative feelings without ever questioning them.
- Guilt beatings: thinking in words like “should, must, ought or have to.”
- Labeling: attaching a negative label to yourself or to someone else.
- Personalization: innocuous events are taken to have personal meaning.
- Blame: blaming someone else for your own problems.
Joyce Meyer, explains in her bestselling book, Battlefield of the Mind, that our negative thoughts are a spiritual battle, between good and evil. The negative thoughts we have are placed there by the enemy to paralyze us from enjoying our life. Our weapons to defeat this is God’s Word, praise and prayer.
Negative thoughts diminish our desire to exercise, eat healthy, destroy our self-esteem and make us feel bad about ourselves and others. Our thoughts play a crucial role in our health and healing. Whether our negative thoughts are automatic or part of a spiritual battle, we do have the power to control our thoughts. The first step is to recognize negative thoughts and thinking patterns. When you learn to challenge and correct negative thinking, you take away the power they have over your mind, body & spirit.