faith, Personal Development

4 Self-Defeating Thoughts Many Men Have

Men need encouragement. If it’s not the popular culture, media, or even people close to us that are knocking us down, it’s the negative thoughts we carry around in our own head. So take some encouragement from Vince Miller who shares some insight on what we can do about self-defeating thoughts.

“I will never be good enough so why try?”

Core Issues: Fear, shame, and guilt that stem from sin and ongoing repetitive failure.

Your action plan:

Avoid cycling in secret self-pity. No one knows you are doing this to yourself and it’s not helpful.

Own your problems. Yet remember you are not the cause of all your problem(s).

Move through emotional gridlock. Name the emotions you feel stuck on and mature through them.

Live in your new identity in Christ. You are a new man even though you still make mistakes once in a while.

Memorize this: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.—2 Corinthians 5:17

“I am tired and confused, I just don’t know what to do.”

The Core Issues: Confusion based on the need for knowledge and clarity combined with feelings of incompetence.

Your action plan:

Clarify the capability gap that you think you have.

Ask someone to mentor you in the desired knowledge and capabilities you need.

Define simple and measurable goals toward reaching the needed capability.

Mark progress toward the goals.

Make adjustments and trust God’s sovereignty.

Memorize this: The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.—Proverbs 1:7

“I am too overwhelmed, I’ll address it later.”

The Core Issues: Procrastination that stems from being irritated or overwhelmed.

Your action plan:

Just start doing something, even a small step. The right moment may never come.

Go public with your decision to do something, it compels action.

Be willing to get accountability or invite to help, it ensures forward movement.

Be transparent with others about how you feel or why you are putting it off.

Memorize this: Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time because the days are evil.—Ephesians 5:15

“I hope this will go away, so I don’t have to deal with it.”

The Core Issues: Failure to take responsibility, lean into challenges, avoidance, and fear of change.

Your action plan:

Identify what you are avoiding and why you are avoiding it.

Write down the future ramifications of non-responsibility.

Use the phrase “I’m Sorry” or “I’m Angry” and open up the dialogue.

Seek reconciliation in relationships, and invite the benefits of healing.

Take one step at a time don’t worry about all the steps, just the next right one.

Memorize this: Do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil.—Ephesians 4:27

Vince Miller is an author and speaker to men around the world on topics that include manhood, masculinity, fatherhood, mentorship, and leadership. He has authored 18 different books for men and is hosted on major video platforms like RightNow Media and Faithlife TV. He hosts a weekly podcast, writes weekly articles, and provides daily thoughts from God’s Word all just for men. He is a 27-year ministry veteran and the founder of Resolute a Men’s Ministry Platform that provides bible studies aimed at building better men found at See his latest study Men & Marriage: Overcoming 6 Unspoken Tensions.

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