Goodbye condemnation, hello lasting change!
Imagine this scenario (or maybe this has actually happened to you)…
You share your heart and struggles with a trusted friend, and this person eventually tells you, “You know, you just need to seek God’s help.”
Easier said than done, right?
It’s easy to feel condemnation, even if your friend has the best intentions.
You feel hesitant about confiding further in this friend because you feel condemned, but you also desperately want to change.
But this is where the barrier to growth begins and ends.
The Truth About Change
Before we specifically address the scenario above, it’s essential to understand how learning takes place.
The main reason learning something new is difficult is that our memory is not like a tape recorder.
It’s more like a scaffold. Let this vital point sink in….
To build the scaffolding, you need to go slow. One step at a time. Correcting any mistakes that we make along the way.
This scaffolding, or what we call Deep Practice, is effective due to something in our bodies called myelin.
Here’s what myelin looks like.
It’s the layer of insulation that wraps around our nerve fibers.
Like rubber insulation on a wire, myelin keeps our signals strong.
This is important because our movements, thoughts, and feelings are electrical signals traveling through our nerve fibers.
The more times you do a certain thing, the thicker the myelin gets, and the more repeatable that movement or thought becomes.
It’s almost like the myelin forges a more extensive pathway for that particular thing making it easier and easier to do.
When you are good at something, you have built up a myelin sheath around the nerves that control that skill.
Building Your Myelin
Deep Practice has three components:
- Watching or reading about someone using the skill.
- Dividing the skill into small chunks and learning them one at a time.
- Practicing each chunk slowly until it can be done without mistakes.
→ Step 1
The step of watching or reading about someone using the skill is called “engraving.”
The key to engraving is to do it until you have enough of a picture to imagine yourself using the skill.
→ Steps 2 and 3
The following two steps – dividing the skill into chunks and slowly practicing the chunks – best illustrate how successful people learn.
For example, take Brazilian soccer. It’s widely agreed upon that Brazil produces some of the best soccer players because of the ingenious way they simulate the game through Futsal. This activity compresses the game of soccer into a small “box” and drives players to use only the most essential skills. It puts players right into the heart of Deep Practice, so they have to make and correct errors and creatively solve problems.
The flight simulator for pilots follows the same principle. It allows pilots to test their skills in a safe practice zone. For example, they can take off and land over and over again. They can test the skills of stalling and recovering over and over again.
In both cases, this Deep Practice divides the required skills into chunks and allows people to practice those skills repeatedly.
Ready To Face Change Head-On?
Let’s go back to the situation you shared with a friend. Life is full of challenges, and you will undoubtedly face more struggles.
But today, with the help of your understanding of myelin and how Deep Practice works, you can overcome your struggles with God’s help.
DrawNear is based on the belief that every person can overcome struggles with Deep Practice, the practices of the Christian faith, and God.
Use the app daily to practice your Daily Pause, which is 5 to 6 minutes long. Follow the prompts and get into the habit of using the spiritual practices of Relinquishment, Forgiveness, Lament, Praise, and Listening.
We “chunk” out the skills for you and walk you through how to build your body’s myelin, so that true and lasting change comes about.
Ready to kick condemnation to the curb once and for all?
Check out the Draw Near app. It takes practices from the Bible, each one connecting us with God, so that our burdens can become God’s burdens. Each practice includes a set of simple, straightforward steps, as well as entertaining and inspiring stories to illustrate someone using the practice. In addition, the app offers numerous sessions guided by mentors, each deeply grounded and experienced in using the practices.