As leaders, our minds are filled with vision, planning, and implementation. Left unchecked, though, they can become overly full to the point of flooding.

We have a small cottage on the St. Lawrence Seaway in northern New York, where the river is at its highest level in one hundred years. Docks are submerged, boat houses are inaccessible, and debris is littering the banks. Water levels have caused evacuation in some areas and significant erosion in others. People are piling up sandbags to curb soil loss and placing water-filled barrels on docks so they don’t detach and float away. The danger is obvious.

Not so obvious is the danger of a flooded mind. Let’s take a look.

7 Indicators of a Flooded Mind

1. You have a hard time staying focused on priorities.

2. Your productivity is slipping.

3. You have difficulty concentrating and making decisions.

4. You find yourself dwelling on areas that aren’t your responsibility.

5. You realize you’ve been replaying something negative that happened.

6. You’re projecting ahead and picturing worst-case scenarios.

7. Your thoughts tend to be more haphazard than congruent.

5 Keys to Containing Your Thoughts

1. Be aware of them. Since the way we think influences the way we lead and live (Pr. 23:7), it’s important to take stock of our thoughts. Instead of just letting them run rampant, tune into what you’re thinking.

2. Keep track of them. For a day or two, jot down your thoughts that are contrary to Scripture, excessive, or unproductive.

3. Identify patterns, categories. Look for patterns in your thoughts, and categorize them. If you tend to worry, what do you worry most about? If you “over think” things, what types of things?

4. Remove the debris. Take your list to the Lord, and ask Him to help you understand your thought processes and deal with those that aren’t righteous or balanced.

5. Guard your mind. Look up verses on controlling your thoughts, and meditate on them. Ask God to nudge you when your thoughts go beyond the borders of what is good and right.

More than anything you guard,

protect your mind, for life flows from it.

Proverbs 4:23 (CEB)

We’re familiar with the phrase, “You are what you eat.” The same is true of our minds, “You are what you think.” As leaders, our thoughts produce an outflow of decisions, actions, and conversations that impact the people and ministry God’s entrusted to us. As a leader thinks in his heart, so is he, and so is the organization he leads.

“As a leader thinks in his heart, so is he, and so is the organization he leads.”

- Lisa Hosler

“Father, help us to pursue You and the mind of Christ so our thoughts are pure, wise, and Spirit-controlled.”

How has God helped you contain your thoughts? Feel free to share what you’ve learned in the Comment Section below.  

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