Thinking positive

It is not just positive thinking… it is positive thinking coupled with positive action that counts. Some people simply overdose on the positive thinking stuff, falsely believing that a positive mental attitude will create miracles. Like the optimist who fell off the top of a multi-storey building: as he passed by each floor he was heard to say, “So far so good!”

When God created us He gave us two ends,
One to sit on and one to think with.
Success depends upon which end we use most,
Heads we win and tails we lose!

They told me I’m too optimistic, I told them my blood type is Be Positive!

Joel Osteen writes: ‘A war is raging all around you, yet, amazingly, you may not even be aware of it. The battle is for your mind. Your enemy’s number one target is the arena of your thoughts. (The Hebrew word for ‘adversary’ is satan, which means ‘a person who opposes or fights against another’. In the Bible, the word is often used as a proper name for a powerful angel-like being who is the avowed enemy of God and humans. Although Satan has great powers, he is no match for God.) The enemy knows if he can control and manipulate the way you think, he’ll be able to control and manipulate your entire life. Indeed thoughts determine actions, attitude and self-image. Really, thoughts determine destiny. That’s why the Bible warns us to guard our minds. We must be extremely careful not only about what we ingest through our eyes and ears, but what we think about. If you dwell on depressing thoughts, you will live a depressing life. If you continually gravitate towards negative thoughts, you will gravitate towards negative people, activities, philosophies and lifestyles. Your life will always follow your thoughts.

Almost like a magnet, we draw in what we constantly think about. If you are always thinking positive, happy, joyful thoughts, you’re going to be a positive, happy, joyful person.

Our thoughts also affect our emotions. We will feel exactly the way we think. You will never be happy unless you first think happy thoughts. Conversely, it’s impossible to remain discouraged unless you first think discouraging thoughts. So much of success or failure in life begins in our minds and is influenced by what we allow ourselves to dwell on.

Some people say, ‘Well, my circumstances have got me down. You just don’t know what I’m going through.’ Actually, your circumstances haven’t got you down. Your thoughts about your circumstances have got you down. On the other hand, you can be in one of the biggest battles of your life and still be filled with joy and peace and victory – if you simply learn how to choose the right thoughts.’

Joel Osteen, Your Best Life Now, 2008, London: Hodder and Stoughton, p.133-136

Take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. – 2 Corinthians 10:5

There were two frogs at the bottom of a well. One frog looked up at the sky and thought that the world was only as big as the top of the well. Sadly this little frog lived out entire his life at the bottom of the well, in his own self-imposed confines. His thinking was limited. The other frog, however, looked up at the top of the well and figured there must be more to life than meets the eye. His thinking was big. This frog decided to scale the wall and find out. It was a long, hard, tedious slog wrought with the danger of falling and ultimate failure. However, the more the frog climbed the bigger the sky became, and when he eventually reached the top, he saw just how much more to life there actually is. – We need to be like the second frog. We need to think big, keep positive and persevere.

R. Ian Seymour

“The game of life is the game of boomerangs. Our thoughts, deeds and words return to us sooner or later, with astounding accuracy.”

Florence Scovel Shinn (1871-1940), artist, writer

The power of the human mind is incomprehensible. Consider for example Dominic O’Brien, who in August 1996 set a new world record in memory accomplishment. Mr O’Brien was given a number of shuffled packs of playing cards and set the task of memorising as many cards as possible in the right sequence and within a set time limit of one hour. The result was truly amazing. Mr O’Brien scored 710 points or to be more precise, he remembered and correctly identified the sequence of 13.6 packs of pre-shuffled playing cards in a time span of just 60 minutes!

R. Ian Seymour

R. Ian Seymour, excerpt adapted from Discover Your True Potential

Great Minds Think Alike: For a bit of fun, try this little exercise and see if it’s true, that great minds think alike.

  1. Pick a number between 1 and 10 and stick with it.
  2. Multiply that number by 9. (This will test your multiplication skills!)
  3. Next, subtract 5 from your answer.
  4. Is the number you now have a single-digit number (e.g. 1, 2 or 3) or a double-digit number (e.g. 11, 22 or 33)? If it’s a single-digit number, stick with it and move on to step 5 below. On the other hand, if your answer is a double digit number, add the two digits together. (For example, if your answer was 14, add the 1 and the 4 together to get 5.) Now, is your answer a single or double-digit number? Repeat this process of adding the two digits together until your answer becomes a single-digit number.
  5. Next, using the number you now have, find the corresponding letter of the alphabet, where A=1, B=2, C=3 and so on.
  6. Now, think of a country beginning with that letter.
  7. Then, take the second letter of that country and think of an animal beginning with that letter.
  8. Finally, think of the colour of that animal.

(Were you thinking of a grey elephant in Denmark? Clever clogs!)

Our minds work like magnets to attract that which we think about, be it positive or negative. I understand that when a piece of industrial steel is magnetised it is capable of lifting about twelve times its own weight. But, of course, when it’s demagnetised it can’t even pick up a paperclip! It’s the same with us – if we are positive, switched on, magnetised, then we can accomplish great feats but if we are negative or demagnetised, then we will accomplish nothing!

Excerpt adapted from Maximise Your Potential by R. Ian Seymour

“Where the mind goes the person follows, so be sure that your thoughts are on what you want rather than what you don’t want.”

Joyce Meyer

Joyce Meyer, Making Good Habits Breaking Bad Habits, (2013), London: Hodder & Stoughton, p.3

One of life’s great mysteries is that whatever you constantly think about and move towards will, eventually, also move towards you.

A man is not what he thinks he is, but what he thinks, – he is!

“We are not responsible for the thoughts that come into our minds, only for what we do with them.”

Jinny Ditzler, author

A little boy was overheard talking to himself as he strutted through the backyard, wearing his baseball cap and toting a ball and bat: “I’m the greatest hitter in the world,” he announced. Then he tossed the ball into the air, swung at it, and missed. “Strike one!” he yelled. Undaunted, he picked up the ball again, “I’m the greatest hitter in the world!” He tossed the ball into the air. When it came down he swung and missed. “Strike two!” he cried. The boy then paused a moment to examine the bat and ball carefully. He spit on his hands and rubbed them together. He straightened his cap and said once more, “I’m the greatest hitter in the world!” Again he tossed the ball up into the air and swung at it. He missed. “Strike three! Wow” he exclaimed. “Well, what do you know? I’m the greatest pitcher in the world.”

Joyce Meyer

Joyce Meyer, Living Beyond Your Feelings, 2011, London: Hodder & Stoughton, p.109-110

‘The Man Who Thinks He Can’

If you think you are beaten you are,
If you think you dare not you don’t.
If you’d like to win but think you can’t,
It is almost certain you won’t.

If you think you’ll lose, you’ve lost,
For out in the world we find,
Success begins with a fellow’s will,
It’s all in the state of mind.

Full many a race is lost,
Before even a step is run
And many a coward fails
Even before his work has begun.

Think big and your deeds will grow,
Think small and you’ll fall behind.
Think that you can and you will,
It all in the state of mind.

If you think you’re outclassed, you are,
You’ve got to think high to rise,
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.

Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man,
But sooner or later, the man who wins,
Is the man who thinks he can!

Walter D. Wintle

Remember the acronym GIGO adapted from the computer programming industry. It stands for Garbage Input Garbage Output: meaning that you can only get out of a computer what has been programmed in to it. The same principle applies to our minds. Allow garbage in – such as TV violence, pornography, vile language or mixing with questionable company etc. – and life will produce the corresponding results. Garbage input, garbage output. Some people brush this aside saying to themselves ‘what I watch or who I associate with doesn’t affect me’ but think of it like this: Your mind is like a sponge. If you knocked over a glass of sour milk and you used a sponge to mop it up, what would happen afterwards if then you squeezed the sponge? Would you get fresh cream from it or would you get sour milk?

Whatever is true,

whatever is noble,

whatever is right,

whatever is pure,

whatever is lovely,

whatever is admirable

– if anything is excellent or praise worthy – think about such things.

Philippians 4:8 NIV (Think and thank God)

“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe it will achieve.”

Napoleon Hill (1883-1970), writer

As soon as you think it ink it

(otherwise you’ll forget it!)

The trouble with common sense is that it is not very common!

To work with mind power you do not have to understand the laws of physics or how reality manifests itself, just as you don’t have to understand how a carburettor works or how spark plugs fire in order to drive a car. Few of us understand automotive mechanics, but that doesn’t stop us from driving. Likewise, in the science of the mind, anyone can quickly and successfully master the basics and effectively put them to work in his or her life.” (…) Consider that “Water takes the shape of whatever container holds it, whether it be a glass, a vase or a river bank. Likewise, your subconscious will create and manifest according to the images you habitually project upon it through your daily thinking.

John Kehoe

John Kehoe, Mind Power, 1997, Canada, British Columbia: Zoetic inc. p.1 & p.41-42

Believe and achieve but doubt and you’re out!

When asked how he was, one positive individual said, “Man, if I felt any better I’d be twins!”

It’s said that men with no hair at the back are great lovers. Men with no hair at the front are great thinkers. And men with no hair at the back or the front just think they are great lovers!

“Whether you think you can or you can’t – either way you’re right.”

Henry Ford (1863-1947)

“Optimists are people who, when they wear out their shoes, just figure they are back on their feet again!” – Zig Ziglar

Think big start small.

For a bit of fun, see if you can work this one out: There are two parrots were sat on a perch: one sniffed the air and said, “Can you smell fish?”

(A perch is also the name of a fish.)

“The most powerful nation in the world is a person’s imagination.”

Zig Ziglar

“Imagination is the true magic carpet.”

Dr Norman Vincent Peale (1898-1994), clergyman and writer

Some people stop to think but others stop thinking.

“What lies behind us and what lies before us, pales in significance when compared to what lies within us.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Whatever you constantly think about comes about.

“A man is what he thinks about all day long.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

When it comes down to how you think, remember GIGO – Garbage Input Garbage Output

Concentrate on the things you want, not on the things you don’t want!

“Nurture great thoughts for you will never go higher than your thoughts.”

Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881), British prime minister

Mr. Meekness, (so called by his work-mates because of his timid character), was a conscientious hard worker who, because of his timidity, was fearful of asking his penny-pinching boss for the raise in salary that was well overdue to him.

Well, one day Mr Meekness happened upon an envelope full of money – £1000 in crisp, new £50 notes. His good fortune gave him a boldness and sense of security, and so with newfound courage he marched off to the manager’s office to demand the raise that was due to him. He told the manager just what he thought of him and insisted that he either got a big raise or else he would quit there and then and go and work somewhere else. The manager, somewhat taken aback, put up a feeble attempt to resist the onslaught but, eventually, he was overcome by Mr Meekness’ firmness and the strength of his argument. In the end, justice was seen to be done and Mr Meekness received a substantial raise.

Later that same day Mr Meekness went to pay the £1000 cash into his bank account but, alas, when he tried to do so he discovered that the money was, in fact, counterfeit! Of course, Mr Meekness lost his treasure but in its place he found something far more valuable. He discovered that, forged notes on genuine ones, the actual thought that he had a £1000 in cash gave him the confidence he needed to overcome his fear. He discovered that positive thoughts and affirmations really do make a difference!

R. Ian Seymour

R. Ian Seymour, excerpt adapted from Discover Your True Potential