It is no secret that I am a big believer in the role the mindset plays in success. So I decided it was time to re-read The Magic of Thinking Big.
Originally written in 1959, The Magic of Thinking Big has stood the test of time and supported millions to develop a winning mindset. David wants you to think big because “Think Big and you’ll live big”.
David states that “Success is determined not so much by the size of one’s brain as it is by the size of one’s thinking”. For such a long time I believed that developing my brain and becoming as intelligent as possible was the most important part of being successful. However, David contradicts that. Instead, he believes that it is one’s thinking that actually matters. The problem is that “All of us, more than we recognize, are products of the thinking around us. And much of this thinking is little, not big”. This is so true. Unfortunately, we live in a world where we are encouraged to think small. People are often dismissed when stating ambitious aims and told to be more realistic.
David warns that “People who tell you it cannot be done almost always are unsuccessful people. The opinions of these people can be poison”. When you are sharing your ambitions with other you need to be careful and ensure that you “Seek advice from people who know”.
One of the concepts I really liked is that “When you believe I-can-do-it, the how-to-do-it develops”. Essentially, once you believe you can achieve it, your brain will search for a way to make that achievement happen. That is why it is essential to really believe that your goal is possible. Even if at the time you are not sure how you will achieve it, but being fully believing you can achieve it, your mind will work to find a solution.
There is a whole chapter dedicated to overcoming fear and being confident. David states that “Fear is real. Fear is success enemy number one”. Fear is a re-occurring theme in books because it affects so many people. David advice is “Build confidence. Destroy fear through action”.
Although this book is over 50 years old, and it is evident in some passages, it is still relevant. The idea of the ‘traditional thinker’ stood out in the book. David states that “The traditional thinker’s mind is paralyzed” and “Traditional thinking is personal enemy number one for the person who is interested in a creative personal success program.”. This could have been written today. There is no time like the present where thinking creatively and not traditionally is essential to be successful.
The Magic of Thinking Big isn’t just about encouraging you to think bigger about what you can achieve. It is also about thinking bigger about who you because “You are what you think you are”. This is partially to do with the fact that “We receive the kind of treatment we think we deserve”. If you think you are important, you will present yourself in a certain way and people will treat you accordingly. It is a circular effect, but you have to put the ball rolling in the right direction.
Chapter 12 is entitled “Use goals to help you grow”. I am a big believer that goals are essential for success. David takes this to the next level by stating that “Goals are essential to success as air is to life”. If you want to be successful, you have to set goals because “No one ever stumbles into success without a goal.” Setting goals is scary. It links back to the idea of fear. If you don’t set a goal, then you can’t fail. However, by not setting goals you will never reach the level of success you are capable of.
OVERALL, one of the reasons I decided to re-read The Magic of Thinking Big was because working on your mindset is a continuous activity. Books are an essential part of me developing a positive mindset. As David said “The mind is what the mind is fed. Mind food is your environment – all the countless things that influence your conscious and subconscious thought”. Changing your physical environment may be difficult (home, work etc). However, there is no excuse to not feed your mind through personal development. As David said, “The biggest and most rewarding kind of investment is self-investment”.
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