I have recently started reading the book The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz. It is a classic in its own right. The power of belief is something I wanted to cover briefly as I feel it is really important. I want to make a few statement first before going into the how.
- This is not just psycho-babble. Don't over-react and think that this is pie-in-the-sky psychology rubbish or simple motivational speaking stuff.
- As Christians, God has given us freedom to imagine big things and to go for it - I don't believe we should be held back by a small view of God and what He can accomplish through us.
- Thinking big isn't wishful thinking, it activates our brains and puts them to work to solve the big things we want them to "create".
On pages 20 and 21 of the book, there are three guides to developing the power of belief. I'm going to go through these now. Sometimes I will quote directly, sometimes I will paraphrase. I will also add my own commentary as we go along.
Think success, don't think failure
This is a simple case of substituting one form of thinking for another form of thinking. When you find yourself going down a rabbit warren of negative thoughts, haul yourself out by the scruff of the neck and begin to replace those negative thoughts with positive thoughts. It's no good simply saying to yourself "I will stop thinking negatively", you have to actually replace the bad with something good. Schwartz says "Let the master thought 'I will succeed' dominate your thinking process'. When you think negative thoughts, you actually train your brain to begin constructing negative conditions that will ultimately lead to failure.
Remind yourself regularly that you better than you think you are.
You aren't superman or superwoman. And to be successful you don't need to have a superintellect "Nor is there anything mystical about success. And success isn't based on luck." Don't sell yourself short. Always realize that God has given you the strength to accomplish that which you apply yourself to. This point does not say that the strength only comes from you. I believe the strength comes from God working in you. But, by the same token, God is unwilling to help those who are unwilling to do something themselves!
If you think and expect little of yourself, then you are going to achieve little. But, if you think and expect big things of yourself, your success will be commensurate with those. "Big ideas and big plans are often easier - certainly nor more difficult - than small ideas and plans." I would like to quote Ralph J. Cordiner, chairman of the board of the General Electric Company, who said this whilst speaking at a leadership conference some years ago :
"We need from every man [and woman] who aspires to leadership - for himself and his company - a determination to undertake a personal program of self-development. Nobody is going to order a man to develop.... Whether a man lags behind or moves ahead in his specialty is a matter of his own personal application. This is something which takes time, work and sacrifice. Nobody can do it for you."
In whatever area you find yourself, if you truly want to succeed - whatever that success looks like - you need to apply yourself. You need to develop the power of belief through a personal program of hard work.