Monday, April 11, 2011

The Circle of Influence vs. The Circle of Concern

More from the 7 Habits Book:

Remember the serenity prayer? "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." There are two circles that encompass your life. The circle of concern contains all the things that you may be concerned about. The circle of influence is a smaller circle. It contains the things you can actually do something about. The tendency is to spend a lot of energy and focus on the circle of concern. The problem is, the energy you are focusing on those concerns is often negative energy/negative thoughts. The key is to put your focus and your energy in a positive way on your circle of influence. Why waste precious energy on worrying about things you cannot change? Instead, learn to recognize your thoughts and language. If they sound accusing, blaming, reacting, then you are in the circle of concern. When your thoughts and language become proactive involving steps you can take to improve the situation, then you'll know you're back in the circle of influence.

Lisa's two cents: In our Bible study, the speaker was talking about our amazing, God-given imagination. Instead of spending time imagining the worst case scenario (a habit I am eliminating), let your imagination run wild with the best case scenario. What if God totally turned your problem around for you? What if you were completely healed? What if your best days are yet to come? What if you were filled with life and health? What if your soul was satisfied? All of those things are possible with God, so start imagining what your life would look like with God in the equation!


  1. This is such a beautiful thing to consider. I wish more people could feel this way. Thank you for sharing this.