Mind Renovation – Day 16 – Wasted Brain Cells

One of my favorite responses has become, “I’m not going to waste brain cells on that.”

I grew up with the famous anti-drug “Just Say No” slogan championed by Nancy Reagan. Remember the commercial featuring a frying egg in a sizzling skillet with a voice saying, “This is your brain…this is your brain on drugs…any questions?” I remember vowing to protect my brain cells from impending frying pans!  I was armed and ready to avoid sniffing paint and cocaine, but there’s another brain cell killer that threatens us everyday. Stress.

Stress creates free radicals that kill brain cells.Cortisol creates a surplus of the neurotransmitter glutamate. (11) Glutamate creates free radicals — unattached oxygen molecules — that attack brain cells much in the same way that oxygen attacks metal, causing it to rust. (12) – bebrainfit.com Stress makes your brain rust! 


Scientist have discovered that excessive stress causes damage to our brain cells. Here’s the quandary: killing brain cells by taking drugs is avoidable, while avoiding all stress is impossible. Stress is an unavoidable part of life. Jesus said in this world you will have trouble, but take heart I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)

“The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.”
– William James

We can’t control all the things life throws at us, but we can control what we THROW at ourselves!

5 Things to Never Waste Brain Cells On…

1. What You Can’t Change 

  • This is where the CONTROL FREAKS raise their hand and shout, “Oh, help me, Jesus!” News flash…there is a savior for the world, and YOU ARE NOT IT! (Deep breath, and smile!) 

Are you worrying about what you got on the test you took this morning? Do you keep thinking about how you could’ve pitched your business proposal better? Are you obsessing over the fluorescent color the neighbors are painting their house? What’s the common denominator?

These are all thing you can’t change. You’re wasting energy and creating stress worrying over what’s already happened and can’t be changed. You can learn and improve next time, but let go of the mistakes of the past.

The Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr says, “Lord help me to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and the ability to know the difference.” If you can’t change it, there is NO GRACE trying. If you CAN change it, God will show you the part you’re responsible for, then trust Him with the rest.

change attitude

2. What’s None of Your Business

The Lord taught me a valuable lesson year’s ago. I was agonizing over a situation that I “accidentally” heard my husband talking about on the phone in the other room. (NOTE: By “accidentally” I mean I overheard through the crack of the door as I leaned down to ease drop!) Stressed out, I moaned to the Lord saying, “Oh God, I can’t stand the pain and pressure of this situation!” I felt the Lord answer my heart by showing me that I actually, was never meant to deal with it. I wasn’t even suppose to KNOW it, but I stuck my nose where it didn’t belong. There was no grace, because I walked out of  God’s boundaries by snooping and being nosy! Then, I couldn’t handle what I learned. You have enough stress dealing with what comes to you; don’t go looking for trouble and stir up more stress and strife. Don’t clutter your brain with the chatterbox of gossip. 

Listening to gossip is like eating cheap candy; do you want junk like that in your belly? Smooth talk from an evil heart is like glaze on cracked pottery. Proverbs 26:22-23 Message 

3. What Other People Think of You

If we could read a poll of your thoughts, I wonder how many would be obsessing over what people think about us? When reading the story of King Saul, you see how thoughts of pleasing the people, outweighed his thoughts of God. Pleasing people was King Saul’s downfall, while David was a man after God’s own heart. As we lead our thoughts towards God’s truth, it results in holy decisions that might not be popular with all people.

Yet the best path is seldom the easiest road; therefore, it is encumbered upon true leaders to brave the crowds and make the right call…the noble choice…the courageous decision. This often means that leaders must risk being misunderstood, not liked, or even viciously opposed. – Kris Valloton (Do You Have the Guts to be a Great Leader)  

A simple truth I read in Laurie Beth Jones’ book, Jesus in Blue Jeans, has become my “People Pleaser in Recovery” motto: “Some Will, Some Won’t, So What, Someone’s Waiting!” We can’t waste brain cells on what people are thinking about us. People are fickle and if they think one thing today; they’ll probably change it tomorrow. Continue to live out truth, and it will speak for itself.


4. Thinking Evil of Others

Thinking negatively or evil of others sets toxins off in our brain that can affect our whole body. There’s no way you want to entertain these thoughts. Remember what Jesus said in Matthew 9:4, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? Our emotions will follow the direction our thoughts determine. If you continue to focus on all the faults and negative qualities of someone, THAT’S WHAT THEY WILL BE TO YOU! We steer where we stare. The next time negative thoughts about someone try to eat your brain cells, turn it into a prayer for them.

5. What Stirs Up Strife

I’ve always heard Bishop Tony Miller say, “Don’t fight battles with no spoils.” There are so many arguments that DO NOT MATTER! Social media increases the stress levels for many people with the tremendous number of arguments and disagreements on every issue.

Just because you’re invited to an argument, doesn’t mean you need to attend!

Even if you’re right, the stress it produces is not worth the fight. Pick battles that promote peace. Protect your brain cells from needless, stupid arguments.

For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases.  As charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome man for kindling strife. Proverbs 26:20-22 

brain cells


Day 16.  Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Proverbs 4:23

Big Thought: Don’t waste brain cells on things that don’t matter!


2 Responses to “Mind Renovation – Day 16 – Wasted Brain Cells”

  1. Vicki Maxwell

    Thanks for pursuing the diligence it takes to produce these Mind Renovation Blog posts! They are awesome and so full of good meaty truths. Thanks for sharing your gifts with the world! I love all the pictures you use😊