Not getting the results we want can be frustrating. Thankfully, it's pretty simple to make some course-corrections that will get you back on track.
We all want to bring forth good fruit - to get the results that we want. But what do we do when we don't have the results we want?
Often, we think we just need to change our behavior. However, that's not the way it works. It's not behavior that is the root of the issue. It's our thoughts that are the root of the issue.
This idea of bearing good fruit comes from the New Testament. "A healthy tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a poor tree bear good fruit. Every tree is known by the fruit it bears; you do not pick figs from thorn bushes or gather grapes from bramble bushes." (Luke 6:43-44, Good News Translation)
Thankfully, it's not that difficult to get the results we want....but like all good things, it does take time and effort.
Simple changes to bring forth good fruit
If your life is not as you want it to be, there is only one place to look for the cause - within.
It is not your circumstances. It is who you are, and who you believe yourself to be. What needs to change for things to change? Only one thing - you!
This is excellent news, because the only thing you can change is you. You have no control over all of the myriad happenings in the world….at least not directly.
Indirectly, you have complete control. Change yourself and you contribute to a better world.
What needs to change? Where do you start? Here are a few suggestions:
(1) Seek after truth
Start by learning to discern truth from error. Right from wrong. Good from bad. Not as the world teaches, but as Christ teaches. How? By reading your scriptures.
(2) Change your thoughts
Behavior needs to change, but changing behavior doesn’t come by forcing yourself to act differently. Your thoughts direct your actions.
Here's a simple example: before you get food from the fridge, you had a thought that you were hungry.
Start with your thoughts. Form the habit of thinking of what you want and who you want to be. Align your thoughts with the truth you are learning. Don’t make room for the destructive thoughts any longer.
(3) Go within regularly
Develop or rebuild a meditation habit. “Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10)
Start with just 5 minutes and work your way up from there. Let go of expectations of how this time “should” be. Just sit, breathe, and be still.
(4) Tune out distractions
Turn off the TV. Put your phone down. Get away from social media. We are bombarded with advice from others all day long.
It is easy to question yourself, what you are doing, and who you think you are when you hear others more than you hear yourself or the Spirit. Step away from consuming. Think your own thoughts. Discover who you are and what you want.
You can do it!
Be at peace. Change takes time. Pick 1 or 2 small things you know you can do. Do them every day, but do them one day at a time. Focus on today.
Small changes, done consistently, will get you where you want to go.