Why You & I Need To Avoid The "3P" Mindset Like The Plague!

Self-talk is a big deal. We all do it, all the time. As a communicator, I realize that no matter how many messages I give, the people I speak to will preach far more content to themselves all day long.

I’ve heard it said, “Be kind when you speak to yourself, because you are always listening.”

Christian psychologist and leadership coach, Dr. Henry Cloud wrote an excellent book called Necessary Endings. This book was incredibly helpful for me in several ways.


One of my big takeaways was Cloud’s comment on our internal processing. He gave 3Ps that we all need to avoid.



Most people are easily offended.

Many times we take things personal that were never directed towards us in the first place.

Have you ever walked into a room and people started snickering to each other. Some of us immediately think the people are laughing at us, but more realistically they were probably in mid-sentence of a humorous and private conversation before we ever walked in!

The truth is that people are far too busy and far too selfish to be thinking about you and I as much as we think they are.

One way to guarantee you will live a life with less stress, offense and discouragement in your life, is to often yourself, “It’s not about me.”

Helpful thought: God is the only One thinking about me all of the time. And His thoughts towards me are good!




When things start to go wrong, we can often project, spread and apply that feeling of defeat, cynicism or negativity far wider than it actually is.

As a leader, one of your departments may be struggling.

You receive metrics that are less than positive. You have two choices: deal with the isolated incident OR began a “sky is falling” emotional downward spiral!

As a parent, one of your kids may be struggling in school, sports, friendships or their spiritual development.

You have the choice to move towards that child with intentional care OR you can begin to rehearse to yourself what a failure you are as a parent and actually convince yourself that your whole family is going down the tubes!

This applies to our relationships, finances, career, and health.

You name it, we can all too easily apply this “cancerous self-talk” to any area.

It doesn't matter how Godly you are. We can all struggle with giving into this kind of thinking from time to time.

 Elijah was a major prophet in the Old Testament. He saw his nation turning their hearts away from God. In a moment of despair, he gave into “pervasive” thinking. He cried out in desperation to God, “Everyone has turned their back on you!” The Lord brought Elijah back to reality and basically said, “No. Calm down Elijah. There are over 7,000 who are still with me. You are not the only one.” (1 Kings 19:18)

Helpful thought: God is up to something great in my life and in the lives of those around me even if I’m not fully aware of it.




It is all too common to go through prolonged seasons where we feel “stuck.” We don’t see any change in sight. We feel as if we have to find a way to make "peace" with the feelings of being trapped.

I live in Upstate New York. Our weather is so sporadic that it can not only fluctuate from day to day, but from hour to hour! It must be a rough gig being a weatherman in the Northeast!

I’ll never forget visiting with some of our family in Mesa, Arizona. Watching the news report that night, I experienced something I’d never seen before.

When it came time for the weather report, the guy basically had nothing new to say. All he did was show the weekly forecast and every single day was identical. There was nothing but, hot, dry sunshine coming for days on end. There was no change in sight for the foreseeable future!

We can do the same thing in our self-talk if we are not careful.

Instead of it being a tough day, week or month, we internally check our “personal forecast” and only see more of the same.

"Instead of recognizing that life is lived in seasons, we feel like it’s an eternal sentence!"

The truth is, “This to shall pass.”

Helpful thought: I'm in a season not a life sentence. And all seasons, by design, HAVE to change. 

There you have it. The 3Ps that we are all tempted to let run around our thought life and damage our self-talk. Friend, AVOID THEM LIKE THE PLAGUE! You'll be glad you did. And so will the people closest to you:)

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Which of the 3 Ps do you wrestle with most in your self-talk? (Personal, pervasive or permanent?)



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