Homemaking | The Proverbs 31 Woman At Home

The Power of Positive Thinking

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The Power of Positive Thinking @ AVirtuousWoman.org

The Ministry of Homemaking

You can find the rest of the posts in this series here: The Ministry of Homemaking Series.

My life has taken a lot of unexpected turns over the years and I often make mistakes.

Like the other day. Someone let me know I had made a mistake. I got that awful sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach and I felt so embarrassed.

Or that time someone at church said something really hurtful to me. And I just kept rehashing the experience over and over and over again in my mind.

Usually when things go wrong and I feel out of sorts, I can think of a hundred reasons why I should just crawl under a rock and stay there. But when my mind heads in that direction, I know that what I really need to do is pray and ask God to direct my thoughts in a positive direction.

Now, I’m no expert psychologist. So what I’m sharing is really based on my own life experience {and things I’ve read}. But I have found over the years that positive thinking makes a huge difference in how quickly I recover from negative experiences.

I tend to be an optimist. In fact, I like looking at the bright side of things. I like giving people the benefit of the doubt. I tell my girls never to assume the worst – always assume the best – because if you’re assuming anything, that means you really don’t know.

As a pastor’s wife, I have to deal with negative people and criticism on a regular basis. I’ve learned to separate myself from those situations. I don’t take things personally.

In fact, I’ve learned to tell myself, “It’s them. Not me.”

Unless, of course, I really have done something wrong and then I need to be quick to say I’m sorry and be accountable for my own actions.

How Shame Affects Your Mind

My own struggle with shame definitely impacted my homemaking efforts and the way I viewed my own ability to be a homemaker.

To this day, if my home feels messy or out of control, I have to give myself a “positive pep talk” and convince my mind that everything is okay, reminding myself that my worth is not tied to the state of my home. Otherwise I feel overwhelmed, frozen, and unable to change things.

If you have struggled with shame because of past hurts, mistakes, and/or circumstances, I want you to know that you are loved and that you are worth more than you could ever imagine to the God of the universe.

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Psalm 139:13-15

You are fearfully and wonderfully made by a Creator who loves you enough to send His Son to die for you! You don’t have to be perfect. Jesus’ grace is sufficient enough for you!

Homemaking with Joy

If your home is presently in chaos or you are just feeling tired and overwhelmed, it can be difficult to enjoy homemaking. Positive thinking and “self-talk” can have a huge impact on how you view your life, your home, and your family.

The Power of Positive Thinking @ AVirtuousWoman.org

If your mind often lingers toward the negative here are a few ways you can make a positive change:

  1. Daily Prayer. Studies have shown that people who pray are happier and healthier. Prayer is powerful! Prayer should be our first line of defense instead of our last resort.  If you’d like to make your prayer even more powerful, try praying Scripture back to God. Find a verse that reflects your desired change or a promise you want to cling to. As you talk to God, repeat the verse or verses back to God and claim it for yourself. You can’t always expect overnight results, but I can testify that this has worked in my life over and over again!
  2. Memorize Bible Verses. It’s so important to hide God’s word in your heart. Scripture can bring a weary soul so much comfort! Being able to instantly recall a meaningful verse when you need it will calm your spirit, give you purpose, and help you think more clearly. A great trick is to print out scriptures or hand write them on cards and place them around your home and in your car. Check out my Pinterest Board, Printable Scripture Cards.
  3. Feed Your Mind the Good Stuff. What you read and watch on television affects your mind in ways that we probably don’t even realize. If you watch a movie that lifts your spirits, you’ll feel happy afterward. If you watch a movie with no redeeming value or that leaves your spirit feeling unsettled, you’ll feel that too. The Bible tells us, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8
  4. Have fun. When I went through burn-out a few years ago, I knew I needed to make some positive changes in my life that would help me once again find my joy. I made the decision to spend time everyday laughing with my kids. Whether we are playing a board game, watching a funny video on YouTube, on a walk or hike, or just talking, spending time just relaxing, having fun, and being together is one of my top priorities every day.

Like I said before, homemaking is about so much more than just cleaning and organizing. It’s about the atmosphere in your home. It’s about creating a home environment that is full of the good stuff: warmth, comfort, joy, laughter, forgiveness, peace, acceptance, and kindness. And all of those emotions, feelings, and actions begin with a positive mindset.

When you exchange negative thoughts for positive ones, the impact on your home and family will be incredible. So remember, if you catch yourself talking negative to yourself, mentally or even verbally say . Negative self talk comes from the Father of Lies, the Devil. And we don’t want to give Satan any power over our lives.

Jesus will have the victory here. 

Home Work

Answers these questions below in a journal or notebook. Or, download my journaling page here.

I am Called to the Ministry of Homemaker

  • What kinds of words do you often say to yourself? Do words from your past, maybe names you’ve been called, come to mind when you make a mistake?
  • Write down three things you need to change in the way you think.
  • What are three things in your life you need to give yourself grace with RIGHT NOW.
  • Are there people in your life that cause you to feel unworthy or inadequate? How can you set boundaries for those people? {Let me know if you have questions about this in the comments below.}
  • Look up these verses and write them down: Colossians 3:2, Romans 12:2, John 10:10
  • What is God speaking to your heart through these verses?

Have you struggled with having a positive mindset? Let me know your thoughts or any questions you have in the comments below!

Be sure to follow my popular board on Pinterest, Printable Scripture Cards.

Follow Melissa Ringstaff {AVirtuousWoman.org}’s board Printable Scripture Cards on Pinterest.

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28 Comments

  1. Hi melissa. Love your post today. Did you accidentally leave out the homework journaling questions? I don't see them. Thanks
  2. I wish i had read this last night before arguing with my husband over silly stuff that clutter my mind and ended up becoming into a storm that i took out on him. I so regret not thinking about God's word first. But i praise God for his godness and mercy, that made my husband not follow along and help me realize the truth. Thank you for reminding me i should always turn to god first.
  3. Thanks Melissa! I really love those verses- some of my favourites. I've been pondering for a while how to cope with a member of my family that tends to bring me down. We're a close family and I see them quite a bit but I always leave being with them feeling frustrated, inadequate or just yucky inside. I can't stop seeing them without missing out on seeing the rest of my family so I usually just end up venting to my husband all the way home and wishing I could avoid seeing them again. I've learnt to let hurtful remarks this person makes to and about me go and I've developed strategies to avoid getting sucked in to gossip with them but they're still so draining. What are some ways I could create more boundaries for this person?
    1. Regarding my previous comment, I’ve had a bit of a breakthrough I’ve been listening to some teaching by pastor Derek Prince about doing things by decision not emotion. I realised that I had been gradually building up a store of resentment and bitterness toward this member of my family and I hadn’t realised because I felt that my reactions were justified by this persons actions. Pastor Prince pointed out that we are called to forgive if we have “ought against any” regardless of whether we feel like it or if the person who’s wronged us apologises. This was a confronting challenge to me. It is hard. But how much has God forgiven me for? So I have decided to forgive this person and feel so free now – what they do is not my worry. If they’re right or wrong is not my concern. I am responsible for my reaction not their actions and I choose to live in peace. It’s so true what you’ve said about the power of positive thinking – and what can be more positive that aligning our thoughts with the Creator of the universe and the Lover of our souls?
  4. I LOVE this! Growing up in a house that had to be perfect all of the time is super stressful. I love my mom, but we couldn't have friends over if the house wasn't perfect, always yelling if we came in with our shoes on, it was a constant "don't do this" and "don't do that" because my mom just cleaned, AGAIN!!! I have been slowly accepting the fact that my house won't EVER be perfect, and that's ok. I have a checklist of my daily duties as a stay at home mom and if things get a little messy after I've just cleaned, then that's ok. I want my family to ENJOY our home and live, laugh and love all the days we are together!! Praise Jesus and his mercy! Thank you for your encouraging and positive words, love your blog!!
  5. I am struggling right now with what to say/do about a friendship -- she often says things that I find hurtful like "Your kids are always sick.'" or she calls me her "Thursday friend" because she says I only talk to her on Thursdays when we get together. If I have to cancel or I am running late, she pouts or is angry and I feel like I am scolded or punished. Where I feel torn is between being a good witness (I have felt like God brought her into my life to love on because she felt so alone) and tired of the anxiety and the stress I feel about the relationship and feeling like I have to spend time with her that I am not enjoying all the time.
    1. Jenna, I'll be talking about setting boundaries in an upcoming post. It is hard to know sometimes what the best thing to do in that situation sometimes, but setting up healthy boundaries and being honest with people goes a long way. So, stayed tuned and I'll have a post about it here in the next few days.
  6. Through looking up those verses, I was reminded of a couple things and a couple new things were revealed to me today. John 10:10 "... I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." The word "abundantly" JUMPED off the page! It will be more abundant through Him and His grace. And in Romans 12:12 "... but be transformed by the renewing of your mind..." What a relief I felt at those words. Thank you... Blessings to you...
  7. What do you do when the one who's supposed to build you up tears you down? Your parent. Ever since I can remember I've not been "good enough". I know that I am supposed to honor my mother and father but sometimes it's just better to stay away and avoid feeling unworthy. Then again, I look at my parent, in they're old age, and feel like I have to be there for them. My parent is a Christian but their actions don't always reflect that. Please pray that I can keep thinking positive thoughts. Thank you.
    1. Grace, I understand how hard it is when someone you love makes you feel unworthy. It's not easy! Parents are sinners too and very often broken people who unintentionally hurt their children with their words. It's important to remember that your worth is in Christ - not in your parents approval. When you can look at others and have empathy for their obvious pain and realize it's them - not you - it can make it easier to bear. However, boundaries are important and I would recommend you read a book on setting boundaries. I'm sorry you are going through this!
  8. What do you do when it's your spouse that constantly puts you down and belittles you in front of the children? He also cheated for years and is always picking fights with either me or the children. I am so worn out I feel like sleeping forever Decades of prayer and no change in him. I also work in his business with him and am expected to keep house and all that is a woman's job. He also doesn't go to church anymore but preaches at me everyday.
    1. Anne, I'm so sorry you are having a difficult time with your husband. It is never okay for your husband to make you feel belittled. I want to invite you to read my post on Anger and Emotional Abuse in Marriage: http://avirtuouswoman.org/help-for-anger-emotional-abuse-marriage/ Abuse in any form is never okay.
  9. Ladies: I am new to Melissa's blog. I am single ; although, I have family living near me. I do not have children. I am the AUNT in my family. I tutor reading at a grade school full-time. I also am a lay pastor in the Presbyterian Church. I turn 63 this month.. As I age, I am struggling with homemaking & housekeeping. My theory is we need to make a home before we can housekeep. I moved from St. Paul to a small town of 6000 to finish rearing a niece, who was a pre-teen at the time. The move was almost 13 years ago. During this time, my home has been the "falling up" place for a number of people including children. People have lived with me from three months to a year. It is time for me to create home for myself . . . time to sort through belongings . . . time to organize a home for my aging years. I am finding Melissa's journey and the comments motivating to my own. homemaking/housekeeping journey and life, in general. I recognize I do not have the complexity of homemaking/housekeeping with a husband and children. However, I want to share gently that it may seem like chaos for those of you with husbands/children; however, sometimes homemaking/housekeeping is easier to do FOR, BECAUSE and WITH others than it is to do when you live alone. Alas, the blessing of living alone is that things stay where you put them!! When I was rearing my niece, I could not find a scissors. Keep in mind that I had placed a scissors in every room - kitchen, bedrooms, sewing room & both bathrooms! My niece blurted out to me "Aunt Judy - you need to increase your coping skills to find things! You keep looking where you put the scissors. The scissors are not in those places. You need to look where I would put them!" We both burst in laughter because, indeed, I kept checking the "right" places for scissors and looking where my niece would put scissors meant they could be on the roof! My nieces words of wisdom stemmed from my always telling my nieces & nephews that the secret to live, beyond having a relationship with God, is to steadily increase your coping skills. May we all make and keep home! Blessings - Judy
  10. I am 54 years old and my husband Ray is 55. We have been married for 27 years and have no children. I have problems with bi polar disorder and depression. My husband also deals with depression on occasion. Both of us struggle with having a positive outlook. I don't work outside the home and have tried for disability but have been denied it. My husband works a good job including overtime but it has been a challenge. A friend came to live with us and helped us keep our home. I'm so grateful for that. I don't know what i would do if we lost our home. It has been difficult making it a home. It is a big house for one person to clean with only a little help but I'm trying. Relationships are a challenge for me as well. I only had a few friends growing up and my best friend moved away. I found friends in the books I read. I loved to spend all day reading stories. Now i'm a 54 year old kid trying to make conversation when I have little to talk about; at least nothing exciting that would interest my husband. I'm rambling on about things that don't pertain to the topic of keeping positive thoughts. Thank you for the scriptures and for the web sight for the prayer cards. I hope to be able to order them. Thank you for this ministry you have.
  11. Melissa, I too am a pastors wife. Why do we put such pressure on ourselves to be perfect?? Another post of yours mentioned you weren't that concerned if things were out of place here and there but that feeling of guilt for not having a perfect home....I think you are in my brain! Thank you for making yourself vulnerable in your articles. That can be uncomfortable and lonely. But I want you to know it is helping little old me!!
  12. I needed to see this today. With all of the struggles of every day life, work, chaos, etc this is definitely something I want to refer back to. I am so blessed and thankful. I want to be positive! Thanks again.

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