In this episode of The Confidence Podcast, we’re talking about
Trish’s podcast is not only uplifting and motivational but offers real, step-by-step ways to actually change your life for the better. So many positive changes in my life I can directly trace back to the advice and practices I’ve instituted because of Trish.
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Lots of reading and consumption, but no implementation.
Overwhelm and impatience.
Confusion of who to learn from and what was important.
Responsibility to do it all on my own.
Presence and peace.
Progress and teamwork, to not be doing it all on my own.
Confidence that I would be guided as needed.
Freedom to know that I need to show up, and then to let God be God and do the rest.
I used to be embarrassed to let people know about the central role of worship in my life. When I first starting dating my husband, I was worried he wouldn’t like how much I needed to have worship music on. He was a Christian, so I knew he wouldn’t be offended by it, but it still made me nervous to be vulnerable to the real role of worship in my life. It felt so nerdy and so weak. But I am weak. We all are. I need worship because I need God. I need to be close to Him, I need His strength and I need His truth. Worship connects me and fills me in those ways. Now my husband knows that worship music plays as the background in our house, and in the mornings, when the kids are both screaming at the same time that the dog is barking at a squirrel, I can see him smile at me, happy that we have a peaceful way to process everyday life without losing focus on what matters. (That said, as equally as I love worship music, you will also hear hip hop and reggeaton pumping through our walls).
I’m writing about worship and personal development because to me, a Christian life coach, they are interdependent upon one another. Over the past few years, I have received countless messages from podcast listeners, book readers and coaching clients wanting to know how I really found freedom from my anxiety, my eating disorder, my broken life. I’ve done therapy, coaching, journaling work and have read thousands of books. I have gone on retreats, gotten prayer, fasted and done cleanses. Those things are all good, but the single most powerful factor to my breakthroughs in my personal growth has been worship.
People report being impatient in their personal growth, wanting to move through the transformation faster than comes naturally. I get it. It’s something I used to struggle with too. For ten years while I held onto my eating disorder, I wanted to change, I knew how to change, but I wasn’t happy with the speed at which I was changing, so I would get overwhelmed with the process and just give up.
It gives me the words and song to repeat truth from my mind to the depths of my soul. It is the method through which I meditate on the changes God is doing in me. It is how I relinquish the transforming power to God and how I get to experience freedom. It’s how I let Jesus come into my heart daily. He comes in and he rains down the honey of Heaven. It is healing honey and it pours down over my mind and my heart, renewing my life lavishly.
This happens not with one-time singing. It happens with repetition, which is why worship is such an integral part of my daily life. Recently a client asked me why she had such a hard time really changing, even though she knew what she needed to do and even though she had invited God into the process of change. She told me that she must be doing something wrong. She could see that I had walked something similar and that I had changed.
What she didn’t know was that to change in that one way, it took me months, years even, of rewiring the neuropathways of my brain. Even now, when I am wrestling with a new concept and am being pruned from an old, toxic thought still lodged in my brain, I have to lean in hard. For me that means repetition. Lots of it. Typically I will feel especially drawn to a worship song, sometimes just one part of a worship song. And then I will listen to that song, or part of it, for hours, for days, for weeks. The song never gets old. Each repeat of it deepens the grooves of the new neuropathways in my brain. This is how I rewrite my brain with the truth.
Just this week on the treadmill I found healing and hope in the second half of a new-to-me worship song. I have proceeded to spend over two hours running, listening to the same few minutes of that song over and over. Sounds boring, but it is anything but. It sweeps my mind away elsewhere and it’s like I can witness the miracle God is working in my brain structure.
I have a secret weapon that has accelerated my personal growth. It is also responsible for the majority of the healing in my life—healing from an eating disorder, from trauma, from sexual assault, from despair. My heart doesn’t always feel encouraged, or strong, but there’s a tool I use to activate peace in my heart, and it has been the cornerstone of my personal development journey.
It’s free, it’s accessible all the time and it brings me out of dark places. It has encouraged my heart at moments I felt hopeless. It helps me not give into overwhelm, fear or insecurity. It is powerful beyond measure, and sometimes only takes two minutes of engagement to see a change.
It’s worship music.
Tolstoy said that “music is the shorthand of emotion.” It makes sense, for music has moved my soul through deep states of emotion. It takes me deeply, walks me through healing, gives me hope and then delivers me into a transformed state of joy. As a little girl, I always loved Jesus songs. Sunday School was a highlight of the week for me. The songs were catchy and positive. This Little Light of Mine was my favorite. I loved it so much I could never understand why I wouldn’t “let it shine.”
Eventually, though, I started “hiding it under a bushel.” Worried about what people think of me, I stopped listening to worship music as a young adult and I watered down my faith, as not to be offensive to anyone else. I thought it made me too nerdy, too religious and too different. Thankfully, God never gave up pulling on the strings of my heart. He broke through my pride, chased after me, and pulled me up when I hit my rock bottom.
It took me a long time and a lot of pain to get out of the do-it-all-on-your-own and prove-yourself life I was living. Eventually, with the transformation that came after hitting rock bottom, I finally found the courage to stop caring about what people think of me and start listening again to what made my heart come alive. I am most alive when I am connecting with God, and I feel most connected when I am worshipping. There nothing more salvaging to my soul than the words of praise.
Before you assume that I am musical or vocally talented, let me tell you I am not. I can’t read music and doing karaoke is my worst nightmare. But when I hear a worship song that speaks to me, my being speaks back and I cannot help but add my voice.
Worshiping well isn’t about singing well. It doesn’t have to be about music at all actually. There are many ways to worship, but for the sake of this blog post, the ultimate playlist of worship songs to encourage your heart, we are talking about worship songs.
For me, someone without a musical bone in her body, worship fills me. I breathe out praise, I breathe in peace. And peace is the foundational building block for all transformative work that happens in our lives. In the development of confidence, courage, and self-worth, peace is the cornerstone. The more praise I give, the more peace I feel.
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-Other shoes will drop
-I was saved, but I was unhappy
-Holiness, not happiness
-God was distant – my issues were my issues
-I didn’t get healing and my prayers weren’t being heard / helpless, unloveable
Most people think of worship music, and they think Sunday mornings at church. Styles and preferences can be quite varied, from conservative and traditional to Pentecostal and spontaneous. My personal preference is the later, more modern version of worship, though traditional hymns do always move my soul in a special way.
Worship goes beyond Sunday. For me, the power of worship music in my life is that it is a daily part of my life. It bookends my days. When I wake, I turn on a few of my favorite songs as I do the morning kitchen routine of packing my husbands lunch, getting the kids breakfast. I start my runs with worship music. It calms my body and I’ve found nothing more invigorating than moving my body at the same time that I am moving my spirit. For me, twenty minutes of worship while working out transforms me mid-day and fills me with strength and perspective, giving me some of my biggest mental breakthroughs. When I end my workouts, I feel the euphoria of post-exercise endorphins and I feel closer to God. I listen to worship whenever I experience midday funks. Typically, with little children, this manifests late afternoon, before dinner. Worship in the background infuses me with more patience, hope and love for my children.
Though it can feel like a quick fix, I like to think about it as a weapon. (That said, many times it is a quick fix. It is a shift that allows my mind to be free from the anxiety, darkness or exhaustion it feels and it lifts my spirit almost instantaneously. There is divine power in hearing and dwelling on, and then singing the praises and truth of God.)
If I’m ever feeling anxious, I turn on worship.
If I am in a bad mood, I turn on worship.
If I want to break the chains of fear, I turn on worship.
If I want to start my day well, I turn on worship.
If I want to understand something better about how God sees me, I turn on worship.
If I want to believe in freedom and full healing, I turn on worship.
If I want more patience with my children, I turn on worship.
If I want to detox jealousy or comparison, I turn on worship.
If I want to step into an abundance mindset, I turn on worship.
If I want to feel like I have a purpose, I turn on worship.
If I want to remember that God is for me, not against me, I turn on worship.
If I want to have confidence in my big dreams, I turn on worship.
If I want to boost my soul with joy, I turn on worship.
Make time for Him every day
Talk to Him, even if you don’t know what to say
Invite Him into the small details of your life, He cares about those!
Live with an attitude of worship and praise in your lifestyle
Trust that God is in charge and isn’t done working on you
Now booking VIP days for 2019.
Email Trish at trish(@)trishblackwell.com
Also, on a bit of a side note, I just wanted to say thank you for being a voice of confidence and support in my life through your podcasts and various social media. I first found your podcast when I was feeling very lost and now I’m in the early stages of building my own business online and pursuing my true passion in service to others. It’s been a long road and not always an easy one, but more than once I feel that you’ve pushed me one more step in the right direction and I’m very grateful for that.