Develop Personal Empowerment through Positive Thinking, Persistence, and Patience
‘Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.’
A sunny summer greeting to our OHI community. As we enter this new season, many of us will continue to be challenged by the business shutdowns, sheltering in place, and physical distancing required to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus. I share this Biblical verse because it reminds us to maintain a Positive Mental Attitude – one of OHI’s 5 “Ps” to optimum health, a framework for developing personal empowerment.
You may recall that in our Spring newsletter, I mentioned that seasonal change is very powerful. I pointed out how Spring is the time of our spiritual calling. How it can be understood to be a time of transformation, and a wonderful time to rediscover your purpose in life.
Now as we enter the months of summer, the season of growth, with its warmer, longer days, we shed our coats and create ourselves anew. In the garden, as the fruit begins to ripen, the farmer will use the additional time to do some weeding – and like the farmer we can use this time to remove things from our lives which are not serving us. The season of growth brings an opportunity for spiritual ripening that involves maturity, fortitude and strength. As we grow from within, we’re better capable of weathering changes and uncertainty. We make room for the important things in life such as following our purpose; and put first things first by eliminating things that waste our energy and do not serve us.
In this article, I’m going to expand on three of our 5 “Ps” to optimum health: Positive Mental Attitude, Persistence, and Patience because these principles may help us focus and act on what we can control, and let go of what we cannot change.
What’s Holding You Back from Positive Thinking?
Have you ever wondered why you have so many negative thoughts? Shouldn’t you be having positive thoughts instead? Not necessarily. We have a propensity for anxiety as it’s a natural instinct – fight, flight, or freeze, which often serves us well, but can be self-destructive when given too much power. It is in our nature to have negative thoughts. We tend to spend more time thinking about insults, criticism, failure, and loss, than we do our successes. It dates back to our days as cave dwellers, because those who paid attention to threats, risks, and other dangers were those who survived and passed on their genes. Bad news can be a warning that a change might need to be made, which motivates us to pay attention.
With Coronavirus so heavily in the news these days, it is especially challenging to maintain a positive mental attitude. The good news is that, with persistence and patience, we may train our minds to resist negative thinking and reframe our outlook on the past, present and future. Lisa R. Yanek MPH, an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Johns Hopkins, found that people with a family history of heart disease, who had a positive outlook, were one-third less likely to have a heart attack or other cardiovascular event than those who had a negative outlook. And, according to the Mayo Clinic, the health benefits of positive thinking include: increased life span, lower rates of depression, lower levels of distress, greater resistance to the common cold, better psychological and physical well-being, better cardiovascular health, and better coping skills during times of stress.
You Can Train Your Brain to Think Positive Thoughts
Here at OHI, we provide a safe and sacred place where you can develop a positive mental attitude. You can train your brain to accept and hold onto positive thoughts. For example, when something good happens to you, try replaying that event in your mind over and over again. Meditating on a positive thought for as little as 12 seconds helps move it from short term memory to long term memory
Another method to counteract negative thinking is to plan a variety of simple pleasures to enjoy throughout the day: listen to a favorite song; eat a special treat; find a good joke or something to laugh about; read something from a beloved author; go outside and inhale some fresh air; or phone a friend. When you prioritize things that make you happy, you make more room in your life for positivity. What simple pleasures make you happy?
When you find yourself drifting into negative thoughts, have a ready list of positive things to think about instead. It could be a good memory, an inspiring quote, or a moment of gratitude.
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9
The next two “Ps” I wish to cover are Persistence and Patience which go hand-in-hand; they complement and reinforce each other.
The Opposite of Persistence is Not Laziness
The opposite of persistence is more likely fear or its companion emotion: doubt. Both of which can cause hesitation, or worse, procrastination. When you delay or quit trying, it affects your sense of self-confidence and can cause feelings of worthlessness. Oftentimes it is merely ignorance or inexperience that causes us to give up. Additional learning and training may be all you need to succeed. That is why persistence is so important; it makes you aware of your weaknesses, and your stick-to-it-iveness pushes you to seek first to understand, then learn from your mistakes, and try again.
Acquiring a new skill takes time, and the specialized knowledge will seem foreign until you’ve immersed yourself in it long enough. That’s where persistence pays off, and you will eventually become an expert.
Persistence is about sticking to your goal. It is not about staying in an abusive or dangerous situation. It’s about adaptability. When adversity strikes, it may mean you have to change your plans, seek a different path, or choose another method for achieving your goal, but you never give up. Martin Luther King, Jr. may have said it best, when he said, “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
With persistence, you build confidence and become a role model to those you wish to influence. Here at OHI, we have many mentors who will help you persist in achieving your goals; whether they are to become a role model for others, find holistic healing, increase natural health, or all of the above. Our staff, our missionaries, and our return guests are all available to encourage and teach you.
“Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.” Proverbs 14:29
Patience Rewards You With Greater Health and Social Skills
Patience empowers persistence. When we can take a long view, we are more likely to achieve our goals and dreams. The benefits of patience are enormous; it improves your health, and makes you a more likeable person. Unlock your total strength, passion and capabilities as a person with patience to understand each aspect deeply.
According to a 2007 study by Fuller Theological Seminary professor Sarah A. Schnitker and University of California Davis psychology professor Robert Emmons, patient people tend to experience less depression and negative emotions. They also find that the more patience a person has, the less likely they are to suffer health problems such as headaches, ulcers, acne, diarrhea, and pneumonia. And, according to management professors, Debra R. Comer, Ph.D., and Leslie E. Sekerka, Ph.D., from their 2014 study, patient people tend to be more cooperative, more empathic, more equitable, and more forgiving. Just like the people you’ll find here at OHI.
Learning patience means you can say good-bye to frustration, exasperation, anger, and anxiety. Dr. Judith Orloff, M.D., an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at UCLA, offers a fun method for developing the skill of patience. She suggests practicing patience by intentionally choosing to stand in the longest, slowest moving line, next time you go to check out in a store. Instead of getting irritated, take a deep breath and enjoy the pause. While waiting, say a few nice words to those in line with you, and use the time to daydream and take a mental vacation from your obligations.
What’s New at OHI
You don’t have to wait for the pandemic to be over to visit us here at OHI and start developing your self-empowerment skills of positive thinking, persistence, and patience. If you’ve been receiving our emails, then you know we are open and that we’ve been working hard to enhance our guests’ experience, while also providing a safer environment. Last March, we established new community health guidelines for everyone on our campus, which allowed us to remain open.
We’ve also taken this opportunity to create a more-intimate guest experience by reducing the number of guests in our program. This means more private rooms are available. The flipside is that program space fills quickly. Therefore, we recommend booking 3 weeks in advance in order to get your preferred room.
We are also very excited to share with you:
- OHI San Diego’s colonic and chiropractic services are now available.
- OHI Austin’s colonic, chiropractic, and massage services are also available.
- Call us to book your appointments: (800) 588-0809
- Since everyone on our campus is currently required to wear a face mask, we are providing masks for each community member in our program.
- We have organic bed linens in all of our guest rooms, which provide a new look and great feel.
- We’ve outfitted each guest room with a Molekule air purifier. The Molekule air purifier destroys a wide-range of pollutants, including allergens, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), bacteria, mold, and viruses.
Wishing you health and wellness in this blessed summer season.
Yours in prayer,
Robert P. Nees, Jr.,
Senior Pastor and Chairman
Optimum Health Institute of San Diego and Austin
In these uncertain times, look to OHI as your safe haven. As we celebrate 43 years of holistic healing, we can teach you how achieve your mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual goals for optimal health. Stay safe, and be well. Above all, embrace positivity!