“Have faith in God,” Jesus answered.
“I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” —Mark 11.22-24
I have another confession. I am an Analysis Paralysis junkie.
It is not so much a defense mechanism I use in order to procrastinate on things as it is to throw myself into a whirling dervish.
Go-to source Wikipedia provides a comprehensive description of the state.
A couple of weeks ago the state threw me into the throes of this zany mindset.
My thoughts fell loosely into the Personal Analysis category in which Wikipedia defines, “Casual analysis paralysis can occur during the process of trying to make personal decisions if the decision-maker overanalyzes the circumstance with which they are faced. When this happens, the sheer volume of analysis overwhelms the decision-maker, weighing him or her down so much they feel overwhelmed with the task and is thus unable to come to a rational conclusion.”
The only difference was that there was no decision to be made. I began over-analyzing a current state of affairs. Before you know it, I was in the “What if my job phases out?” “What if I lose the people I really care about?” stage.
Granted, a part of this obsessive, unhealthy thinking may stem from the fact that I am still teetering from some major setbacks. Another part is because I am afraid. Afraid to lose what I have worked so hard to get/hold onto. Afraid that I’ll never shift out of crisis mode. You know, that old adage about “waiting for the other shoe to drop.”
To make matters dire, someone reminded me that my thoughts manifest into my behavior that creates the reality around me. Although there is a lot of pop psych about this brand of positive thinking, it can be traced back to the bible as quoted above,” Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
So, back to a couple of weeks ago: I’m a whirling dervish, over analyzing, feeding on my Analysis Paralysis addiction and making myself and anyone with a listening ear CRAZED. The outcome amounted to nothing—nothing earth shattering happened. I still have a roof over my head. Food. Friends. A pretty nice Jersey Strong to lean on.
The thing I did lose, however, by allowing Analysis Paralysis to overtake my week was my physical and mental well-being. I was tired, drained; thus, I could not accomplish some of my routine chores, and I was by no means present to the ones I love in the manner I like to be. The result was that I had to cancel some pleasure time in order to play weekend catch-up.
The problem with Analysis Paralysis for me is that it kicks me to the abyss of a swampland. There I spend idyll time stuck, going under, sinking while the rest of the world moves on.
To have faith is to trust in the process of the good. Unlike a swamp-like, sinking environment, it is a positive forward movement, which nourishes our needs.
Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
This is a positive affirmation if I ever heard one. We don’t say things like “have a little faith” and mean that the barrel of a gun awaits!”
Of course when I pick up my Analysis Paralysis addiction, I pick up my imaginary gun; it may not be real, but it is still a hazard.
The best defense for me is a three-P approach:
I am currently in remission. Things are looking up. I hope. I’m thinking…oops, that’s one of my downfalls.