Paradigm Shifts

Often, old ways of thinking and doing suddenly don’t work anymore. So, as we mature and grow, we must develop new approaches and beliefs that better serve us. Often, this is because we’ve learned unhealthy habits. Not always, though. Sometimes, it’s just that our previous habits and mindsets simply won’t work for our current season of life or for transitioning us to the next one.

Some examples:

  • My approach to diet and exercise in midlife is quite different than when I was younger. At least, it must be if I’m to stay healthy and fit.
  • There are reasons (e.g., language, vocabulary, character development, etc.) teens and young adults have subgenres within the larger genres of fantasy, sci-fi, mystery, etc.
  • Overcoming chronic back pain is driving me to relearn how to best exercise, stretch, and even move to correct the root cause of muscle imbalance.
  • Parenting requires new approaches at each stage of life, including when you become an empty nester with adult children.

Another paradigm shift I’m undergoing has to do with the way I manage physical injuries, anything from sore feet to a strained back to a seized-up shoulder. Turns out, the RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) approach many of us have used for so long when we walked too far in cheap shoes, loaded and unload one too many trailers full of wood, or held a heavy bag for too long is not the best way to heal an injury.

Experts now say that the RICE method is detrimental to our healing. Even Dr. Mirkin, the man who first came up with RICE, now realizes that it’s simply not the best way to manage an injury.

Peace & Love

Physical therapy experts now recommend the PEACE (protection, elevation, avoid, compression, education) and LOVE (load, optimism, vascularization, and exercise) method for healing injuries. While I’m sure there are other ways to remember these approaches, I like this one because in addition to helping me remember how to heal any injury I inflict on myself, it also reminds me of a spiritual paradigm shift I must continue to cultivate if I want to grow spiritually.

In a world touting peace and love in ways that promote individual truths and self-actualization absent of any over-arching morality to guide it, anyone who loves Jesus must know what he has to say about peace and love.


  • We have peace with God because of Jesus (Romans 5:1)
  • The peace Jesus gives isn’t like the peace the world gives. (John 14:27)
  • The Holy Spirit produces peace in us. (Galatians 5:22)
  • We can experience God’s peace even if we don’t understand it. (Philippians 4:4-7)


Of course, the Bible has much more to say about peace and love in addition to these eight references, but even just these few verses show us how different the world’s view of love and peace is compared to what Jesus taught. Those of us who follow Jesus need to regularly assess the love we show, comparing it regularly to that which Jesus shows. It’s not a one-and-done assessment, either, but one we must continually return to as we mature.

Sometimes we need simple habit adjustments in our lives. Often, though, we need paradigm shifts to mature and grow. We must continually assess and reassess our thinking, adjust, and repeat the process to move successfully along in our journey of progress toward perfection. This maturity happens largely through small adjustments that add up over time to make a big difference and often become apparent to us in what seems like a paradigm shift when we’ve just collected enough small adjustments to see the larger changes they’ve worked in us.