I am so easily entertained. The Boomerang app is a great example of this. The idea was a very clever one. There’s just something about a moving image unexpectedly going in reverse that is so fun!
My mind wanders, and I can’t help but feel like we all experience boomerang-like behavior in life. We give the illusion of movement, but in reality we are just reliving the same motions over and over. We sometimes call this behavior a “habit”.
Not all habits are negative, of course. In fact, I’m currently in the process of forming some positive habits myself. Daily meditation, consistent cardio, eating clean food…these are all positive changes! Creating new, positive habits always seems less intimidating than it’s evil twin – breaking free from old, negative habits. For some, the mere thought makes us cringe. To avoid the discomfort of change, we do something so dangerous – we accept the identity of our past. This thought pattern is exactly what traps us in the boomerang.
Running is a great example for me. Until the last couple months, running has been a nemesis of mine. One of my greatest fears in high school was the annual timed mile. I have always said things like “I’m just not a runner” and “I’m not built for running.” While there are traces of truth in those statements, they are also laced in fear. I’ve been working hard recently on connecting with my thoughts and dissecting them to understand where they are coming from. Studying these particular thoughts, I uncovered fear of failure – I’m not good at running. My counter thought was simple – I’m not good at running because I have never trained to be a runner. Hmm, well…the shift in perspective really sheds a new light on that fear, doesn’t it? It’s not that I’m a failure – I just have not been training in a way that supports running. All of the sudden there is less pressure. More grace. My mindset was causing my setback.
I created a list of all the things I like about myself. Looking at that list, one thing was very apparent – most of those qualities were things that I have grown and cultivated over the years. I was not simply born with gratitude or an optimistic outlook. I would not appreciate the little things in life if it weren’t for all the difficult things I experienced.
“The most effective way to change your identity is to choose your new one over and over.”
- Chris Nichols (Cross Point Church)
If you have always struggled with a title – stop overthinking it right now. Stop allowing it to have power and don’t allow it to waste space in your mind. Old thoughts and insecurities will always spring up, but you don’t have to store them. Be selective with the thoughts you allow in. Actively choose the new identity that God has given you, not your past.
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
– Isaiah 43:18-19
Don’t get stuck in the boomerang of your past. You are loved, forgiven and chosen. Let your creator be the one that defines you. Outrun the boomerang.
By Emily Meadows