How to fix self control issues in 5 affective steps.

It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should…
Achinike Amadi

on November 10, 2022

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  • fixing self control issues
  • It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable.

    1 Thessalonians 4:3‭-‬4 NIV.

    The message from Apostle Paul to the church at Thessalonica couldn’t be any clearer.

    It’s your responsibility to possess your vessel.

    No one could do it for you. Tellingly, we are liable and answerable for the things we do with our bodies.

    However, it becomes increasingly difficult to control ourselves when our bodily desires and passions now hold the rod – An anomaly that seems normal in the build of Man.

    self control for teen guide

    What the bible says about self control.

    The concept of self control is well documented across both the Old and New Testament bibles. Some words used, in the bible, to refer to this spiritual empowerment are; sound mind, self-restraint, temperance, and self-discipline.

    One thing guaranteed is that self-control is a trait that distinguishes a legitimate child of God (Heb 12:8).

    If you take a critical look at the nature of sinful actions recorded in the bible, you’d find that they are motivated by a perverted desire. The sinful nature inside man is wired to go the opposite route of decency, love, and restraint.

    The result of living this way is spiritual death. Being separated from the Father, there’s no way you would be in His presence and by extension His kingdom.

    Indiscipline poses grave consequences and actively threatens your true identity as a child of God.

    To learn more, read this study on self control according to the bible.

    How do you know if you lack self control.

    The proliferation of sordid behavior demonstrated in the media is also another cause of self control issues, especially among teenagers and young adults.

    Due to its rampancy in social spaces, it is easy to misconstrue a sordid behavior as perfectly normal.

    According to this research paper, Self control for teens is a prerequisite for successful identity formation and an indicator of how their life will turn out.

    From firsthand experience, I know that the proficiency of self control for teens is hindered by the mental state of not knowing that they lacked self control.

    Okay, I get it. Self control is a big deal. How do I know if I lack self control?

    Here are a few signs that indicate a lack of self control;

    • A positive correlation exists between gathered feedback on behavior and unbiased self-assessment.
    • Having full knowledge that an action is wrong, you desire to not do it, yet you do it anyway.
    • Negative impacts on any or all aspects of life; personal, social, and work. Exemplified in the inability to reach set goals and meet the needs of allocated responsibilities.
    • A sense of loss of self.
    • Unable to prevent the development of negative thoughts into full-blown inappropriate physical movements.
    • Not bearing the fruits of the Holy Spirit; Love, power, and sound mind.

    How to fix self control issues.

    5 steps to fix self control issues

    There are so many causes of self control issues including but not exclusive to; history with trauma, clinical disorders, and even unwise self-made decisions.

    But I believe that God can cause you to live in a state of perpetual control over your thoughts, impulses and actions especially sinful ones irrespective of the root cause of said destructive behavioral patterns.

    It is from my reflection on past personal experiences that I make the above-mentioned dictum and proceed with the steps outlined below.

    The rest of the process, discussed in this article, is certainly slow and uncontrollable. The “DIY” lover may be faintly disappointed yet it’s a one-stop solution to compulsive and sordid behaviors.

    Here are 5 steps to gain self control biblically.

    Step 1. Become conscious of the impulsive behavior

    If you want to possess your body, you must understand the other nature that contends for its control.

    Because the interpretation of the fine line between excess and moderate is subjective, many people continue to indulge in destructive behavioral patterns without having the slightest clue of their negative impact.

    Oblivious of their problem, they take no action toward a solution. More often than not the issue worsens.

    Some questions for better awareness are;

    • What are the symptoms?
    • What is the cause and the root cause?
    • If any, What biblical laws am I breaking as a result?
    • Are my behaviors a result of a need I am lacking?
    • What proscribed solutions have I tried, did they provide lasting results?

    These questions shine a light on the nature of your captor.

    When you are conscious of the true nature of your self-control issue, you have taken the first restorative step towards self-discipline.

    Step 2. Accept failure and Desire an escape.

    Compulsive behaviors are bound to stick around more than we’d like it to. Many efforts to bring it under restraint will prove abortive.

    A potential state of depression will likely follow a sense of defeat. But fret not, these are all signals that prime you for recovery if you would embrace failure and look towards a more potent alternative beyond yourself.

    You have to dislike the way things are and be willing to change things for the better.

    If you’ve gone through the rigors of step 1 and have come to the full realization of what your self control issues cost, then a desire to escape should be brooding already.

    Decide that enough is enough.

    Don’t give in to the lies that there’s no victory for you. Refuse to remain enslaved and yearn for a future of freedom, power, and productivity.

    Step 3. Turn towards Light.

    Driven by the willingness to change things for the better, it becomes second nature to go in a different direction.

    Well, you could consider other options that seem thoroughly viable or you could choose God as your next and final resort.

    If the latter is more appealing, then it’s the perfect time to tune into a relationship with God.

    I know it can feel like it is best to isolate yourself. It’s not. It’s the work of the devil to keep you separated from God and his gift of restoration.

    If you haven’t before now, seek His heart in an intimate relationship bound by truth and grace. It is safe to be weak there. Adorn yourself with this humility as you make your request known to Him.

    God wants what’s best for you. Believe that. And if you do, accept His discipline (if dispensed) with good cheer.

    Step 4. Partner with the Holy ghost

    The Holy Spirit is our companion. The one who goes with us while in us.

    He is your helper, He is the cavalry. He is God. He will come at the appointed time, He will not tarry. The father will send him when seeds of repentance are evident inside you.

    This isn’t to say that you can earn your way into the good books of God by picking up punitive undertakings. One thing to learn from previous steps is that we can’t really do anything to help ourselves when our impulses now have charge over us. Not yet anyway.

    All you need is a repentant heart and a resolution to fix your self-control issue. Actions will inevitably reflect this heart condition but it shouldn’t be seen as bargain rights for God’s goodwill.

    What does partnering with the Holy Spirit towards fixing self control issues look like?

    • It is listening for a push or a pull to do or not to do a thing.
    • Moving past the sense of weakness and defeat.
    • Honoring His call to quit a toxic relationship.
    • Doing the arduous heart work of forgiving.
    • taking a step of faith against human knowledge and applied sciences.

    This is a step we keep returning to irrespective of where we are in our walk with Christ.

    Yes, believers, and disciples, also have to deal with subconscious mental programs and triggered emotional hijacks often arising from a challenging situation.

    At the time of writing this article, I am struggling. I am finding it difficult to put away my handset. I spend an inordinate amount of time online(not on social media) researching ways to release blog posts like this more effortlessly and quickly. On the flip side, it is affecting my focus and my sleep schedule thereby sabotaging my efforts altogether.

    What am I doing about it?

    I’ve taken to God in prayer and I am open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. I have taken stock of possible triggers and I am establishing boundaries.

    5. Set boundaries

    setting boundaries to fix self control issues

    For anything, this should give a bit of comfort as it is the most physically active step of the entire set.

    Each time there is a case of a self control issue, it is likely that boundaries are being crossed. That the rims of normalcy are being breached. It could be intentional or unintentional.

    Boundaries, among other functions, delineate identities.

    “This is me. This is not me.”

    In Christ, you’re the righteousness of God. You have the power to live this out through the help of the Holy Spirit.

    He doesn’t do all the work. You must take full ownership of your body and become responsible for your behaviors. Establishing physical and inner boundaries that are able to keep the bad out and the good in is the final step to fixing self control issues.

    Here’s what I am going to do for my self control issue

    • Lay down some rules and append some sort of penance to ensure they are strictly followed.
    • Become accountable: plug into a trustworthy relationship to keep me in check. The Holyspirit, friends, family, and group homes are viable options for you and me.
    • Thirdly, you guessed it. Establish an enabling environment. Removing triggers and getting more engaged in human daily interactions.

    Get a one-pager containing more tips on setting boundaries inspired by Henry Cloud and John Townsend’s Boundaries.

    CONCLUSION

    Self control issues signal a lack of control or inability to restrain one’s thoughts, emotions, and impulses. The aim of this article is to open your mind to a possible solution for fixing them.

    With the help and power of the Holy Ghost, we demonstrate self-control in all our endeavors. You can choose to stay put against the tides that push in the wrong direction.

    What destructive behavior is God calling you to drop and what step are you currently on towards gaining self control?

    Achinike Amadi
    Hello, I'm Archie(not from the comics). I share lessons from experiential Christianity and curate resources that could help you practice self-leadership.
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