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I just canít stop thinking about guys and donít know how to stop these feelings.

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I have exams coming up, but Iíve been finding it harder and harder to keep my mind focused. I just canít stop thinking about guys and donít know how to stop these feelings.óTina, 13.


Tiffany Answers:

Dear Tina,

I can relate. I was around your age when I had my first major crush on a guy. It reminds me of the words for the theme song of the old TV show The Love Boat: “Love [puppy love, in my case], exciting and new.” And that’s what my crush was to me—“exciting and new.” The world of guys and my interest in them and the possibility of them liking me back was (and still is) fascinating.

I remember the fun I had thinking about him and thinking about our possible future lives together. I spent time writing about him in my diary. I spent time talking to my friends about him. I spent time doodling Mrs. John Doe (not the real name, of course) in my notebook and dreaming about the two kids, the house, and the cat we would have together. And then . . . well, then my report card came, with my grades a little less than my ideal.

I decided it was time to rein in my nonstop daydreaming and snap back to reality. Granted, I still daydreamed about him, but I confined my time to certain free moments, rather than making it a 24-7 deal.

Most things in life, including this subject, are ultimately about balance and self-discipline. Balance is being well-rounded, keeping yourself from becoming so superfocused on one thing in life that you let everything else go. Why is balance important? If I devote all of my time and energy to one thing, what happens if I lose interest in that one thing some day? Or, in the case of a love interest, what happens if the guy decides in favor of someone else? If I haven’t developed any other areas of my life, what’s left for me to turn to? I’ll just wind up with a rather empty life.

Above all, we don’t want anything else in life taking the place of God. Whether it’s a guy or girl, basketball, video games, watching TV, we don’t want any one aspect of our life to become such an overpowering force that we start placing more importance on it than we do on God (see Exodus 20:3 and Matthew 10:37).

Self-discipline is a great tool for creating balance in your life. It’s what you use to keep yourself from being too concentrated on one thing. At some point you need to make the very deliberate decision that you won’t allow yourself to think about guys nonstop. Every time you feel your mind wander when it’s not supposed to, remind yourself of that decision and refocus your mind.

It may seem hard to do, but God is on your side. Start off by praying that God will help you get your brain on task. Remember, you “can do all things through Christ” (Philippians 4:13). Ask family and friends for help too. Study with a friend whom you can count on to help you stay on task. Ask your parents to check in on you during your study time. Maybe you can have them quiz you after you review different sections in your textbook. (Can you imagine how much you’ll impress them with your sense of responsibility if you ask them to do this?)

Keep reminding yourself that there’s a time and place for everything. Practicing self-discipline and balance in one area of your life will help you develop those valuable traits in other areas. Now, go hit those books!
 



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