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10 Belief Shifts To Redefine You And Your Recovery

By March 13, 2024March 27th, 2024No Comments
Define you

Recently, I met with a new coach. From experience, I get out of these coaching sessions what I put into them. I knew this coach wouldn’t tell me what I wanted to hear but would challenge me to grow, adjust, and expand.

As we progressed through the session, the coach asked me to define some key beliefs in my life and as a coach. It’s a great question.

Later that day, I listened to a podcast that asked a similar question: What defines you?

I detected a theme. 😄🤔

Now, sit with this question for a minute or two before you whip out a quick answer.

What do you allow to define you?

In some ways, this might be a trick question. Because you live out what you allow to define you. So before I jumped to a quick answer, I paused. Did my actions support what I say matters most to me?

The beginning of Proverbs 23:7 says, “For as he thinks within himself, so is he…” God tells you he looks at your heart (your innermost self). Nothing remains hidden from God. If this proverb is true, then what you believe about something influences your thought life.

Your beliefs define you.

Look at some of those beliefs that assault you after discovering that your husband struggles with using porn.

    • I’m ugly.
    • I don’t have any value.
    • Something must be wrong with me.
    • I’m not pretty enough.
    • I’m not skinny enough.
    • Maybe if I wore different clothes.
    • I’m not sophisticated enough.
    • My hair or skin is the wrong color.
    • Because I’m not outgoing, he finds me dull.
    • I’m stupid.
    • Everyone else probably knows and laughs at my stupidity.

You might have a few more to add.

All these beliefs quickly redefine you when you discover your husband’s porn struggles.

Read that list again. What thoughts tumble on top of those beliefs?
How would you classify those thoughts?
What’s happening in your body and soul as you read that list again?

If you’ve thought them, give yourself grace. So many brilliant, classy, beautiful, creative, and articulate women tell me that’s what they believe about themselves.

Nothing is further from the truth. But the enemy of your soul wants you to believe that. If he can convince you to accept these lies as truth, you will speak and act accordingly.

A woman like you who believes these thoughts will put them into words and follow them with actions.

You might avoid mirrors, believing that you are ugly. Or when you do look in the mirror, you notice every imperfection. You allow this thought to trigger emotional eating. After all, if you’re already ugly and fat, what’s the difference?

When your best friend compliments you on your hair, clothes, newest completed project, kind words, or anything else, you respond with, “Oh, that? It’s not like I did anything great.” Basically, you rob your friend of her joy and kindness.

A woman who struggles with body image might get triggered into anorexia or bulimia. Believing she isn’t skinny enough, she’ll starve herself.

Perhaps you feel awkward and shy around other people. One woman might refuse to leave the house, while another decides to become the life of the party. She spends money on new clothes, goes out every evening without her husband, and flirts with every man she meets.

Defining yourself by what another person thinks always disappoints.

God gives you a way to define yourself better.

Philippians 4:6-9 says,

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.

How does filling your mind define you?

Most often, you do the things you believe are important. Sometimes, though, when you’ve been derailed by discovering betrayal, like your husband struggling with porn, you make unhealthy choices. You might struggle to get out of bed, preferring the escape of sleep to facing the struggle. Caring for your children becomes so taxing you find yourself lashing out in anger. When you pause to evaluate why you do what you do, you discover intense emotions you don’t know how to handle. Those emotions leak out in unexpected words and actions.

And behind those emotions are beliefs about yourself that this discovery has skewed.

Can you identify with any of these statements?

    • I used to be so confident. Now, I’m not sure of anything.
    • Before this discovery, I laughed a lot. Not anymore.
    • I used to be an energetic person. Now I’m exhausted all the time.
    • I feel like I need to bury the hurt so I can get through today.
    • I constantly wonder what’s wrong with me.

Dear one, I understand each statement because I felt them. You are not crazy or alone in these thoughts.

Your recovery journey will teach you how to take captive these beliefs and replace them with God’s truth so your actions move you toward a healthy life. Read those verses in Philippians 4 again. Then, identify where your beliefs and thoughts fall on the chart below.

When you can fill your mind as God encourages in these verses in Philippians 4, you redefine yourself.

Your past describes what happened to you and how you responded, but it does not define who you can become. Your beliefs, thoughts, and actions today impact your future, so it’s up to you.

Will your wounds define you? Or will you face the pain, work through each false belief, and grasp God’s healing?

How would you define your fundamental beliefs? On what do you base those beliefs?

Your beliefs nurture your thoughts, which feed your actions.

Women who find healing after discovering their husbands’ porn struggles do what it takes to learn, assess, change, and grow.

They recognize the past but don’t force it upon the future. They exchange the worst for the best, the ugly for the beautiful, and the anxiety for peace with God. If that’s what you want, then please reach out. Let’s talk about where you are and your desired future. I believe it can be fantastic.