Asides

The Magic of Thinking Big

Book

The Magic of Thinking Big by David J Schwartz

My Highlights

success is determined not so much by the size of one’s brain as it is by the size of one’s thinking.

Belief, the “I’m-positive-I-can” attitude, generates the power, skill, and energy needed to do. When you believe I-can-do-it, the how-to-do-it develops.

Belief, strong belief, triggers the mind to figure ways and means and how-to. And believing you can succeed makes others place confidence in you.

The “Okay-I’ll-give-it-a-try-but-I-don’t-think-it-will-work” attitude produces failures.

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Decide

Book

Decide: Work Smarter, Reduce Your Stress, and Lead by Example by Steve McClatchy

My Highlights

Leadership and progress take time, energy, and commitment. But time continues to pass, whether you use it to accomplish something worthwhile or not.

If your decisions about life and how you use your time do not reflect an effort to make the future better than it is today, then it won’t be.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. —Mark Twain

No matter how many “have to” tasks are on your plate, you can always fill your day with them. There’s always something to repair, maintain, clean, feed, keep up with, pay for, or care for. The reason that Prevent Pain tasks go on and on is that they never actually go away; they just eventually repeat. For example, you don’t really cross doing dishes off your to-do list; you just move it to the bottom because by the next night, you will have to wash them again. The same is true with checking e-mail or stocking inventory. You don’t cross it off; you move it down the list, because it’s coming back again at some point. Tasks such as putting gas in your car, doing laundry, and going grocery shopping all have to be done over and over again because the things necessary to maintain your life are never finished. By always focusing on getting them done and preventing pain, you don’t end up with Gain; you end up with no pain and unfortunately no progress.

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Outliers

Book

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell

My Highlights

Their research suggests that once a musician has enough ability to get into a top music school, the thing that distinguishes one performer from another is how hard he or she works. That’s it. And what’s more, the people at the very top don’t work just harder or even much harder than everyone else. They work much, much harder.

The idea that excellence at performing a complex task requires a critical minimum level of practice surfaces again and again in studies of expertise. In fact, researchers have settled on what they believe is the magic number for true expertise: ten thousand hours.

Practice isn’t the thing you do once you’re good. It’s the thing you do that makes you good.

Those three things—autonomy, complexity, and a connection between effort and reward—are, most people agree, the three qualities that work has to have if it is to be satisfying.

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A Better Way to Live

Book

A Better Way to Live: Og Mandino’s Own Personal Story of Success Featuring 17 Rules to Live By by Og Mandino

My Highlights

Fate, coincidence, luck, chance … ? I don’t think so. I am convinced that many times, in the course of our lives, God challenges us with a golden opportunity, a seemingly impossible hurdle, or a terrible tragedy … and how we react—or fail to react—determines the course of our future, almost as if we were involved in some sort of heavenly chess game … with our destiny always in the balance

You might be surprised when you discover how close help is if you just ask for it.

Stone and Hill’s message was loud and clear: You can accomplish anything you wish that is not contradictory to the laws of God or man, providing you are willing to pay a price.

RULE ONE … for a Better Way to Live Count your blessings.

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The Promise of a Pencil

Book

The Promise of a Pencil: How an Ordinary Person Can Create Extraordinary Change
by Adam Braun

My Highlights

regardless of age, status, or location, every person has the capacity to change the world.

I believe that where you start in life should not dictate where you finish.

The biggest difference between the person who lives his or her dreams and the person who aspires is the decision to convert that first spark of motivation into immediate action.

Take the first small step, then chase the footprints you aspire to leave behind.

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The Dip

Book

The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick) by Seth Godin

My Highlights

People settle. They settle for less than they are capable of. Organizations settle too. For good enough instead of best in the world.

The reason that big companies almost always fail when they try to enter new markets is their willingness to compromise. They figure that because they are big and powerful, they can settle, do less, stop improving something before it is truly remarkable.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Successful people don’t just ride out the Dip. They don’t just buckle down and survive it. No, they lean into the Dip. They push harder, changing the rules as they go. Just because you know you’re in the Dip doesn’t mean you have to live happily with it. Dips don’t last quite as long when you whittle at them.

There’s not a lot to say about the Cul-de-Sac except to realize that it exists and to embrace the fact that when you find one, you need to get off it, fast. That’s because a dead end is keeping you from doing something else. The opportunity cost of investing your life in something that’s not going to get better is just too high.

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The Boron Letters

Book

The Boron Letters by Gary Halbert, Bond Halbert

My Highlights

How You Feel Affects How You Think

Try Things At Least Twice  Just the second attempt at anything hard will be much easier. Not a little bit but by A LOT. It is true of almost everything, not just sports.

My dad’s favorite saying was “nothing is impossible for a man who refuses to listen to reason” and it served him well his whole life.

No, sometimes there is no use wasting time and energy fighting established beliefs by arguing and it is better to just silently go about proving or accomplishing your goal.

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The Big Leap

Book

The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level by Gay Hendricks PhD

My Highlights

Life is at its best when love, money, and creativity are growing in harmony.

We humans have a long and wonderful history of transcending our beliefs about what’s possible. In the early days of the steam-powered train, learned scientists urged capping the speed at thirty miles per hour because they believed that the human body exploded at speeds greater than that.

There’s only one way to get through the fog of fear, and that’s to transform it into the clarity of exhilaration. One of the greatest pieces of wisdom I’ve ever heard comes from Fritz Perls, MD, the psychiatrist and founder of Gestalt therapy. He said, “Fear is excitement without the breath.” Here’s what this intriguing statement means: the very same mechanisms that produce excitement also produce fear, and any fear can be transformed into excitement by breathing fully with it

When I was growing up, my next-door neighbor Mr. Lewin shared a powerful bit of wisdom with me. I’ve kept it in mind for more than fifty years. On Judgment Day, Mr. Lewin said, God will not ask, “Why were you not Moses?” He will ask, “Why were you not Sam Lewin?” The goal in life is not to attain some imaginary ideal; it is to find and fully use our own gifts.

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The Obstacle Is the Way

Book

The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph by Ryan Holiday

My Highlights

You will come across obstacles in life—fair and unfair. And you will discover, time and time again, that what matters most is not what these obstacles are but how we see them, how we react to them, and whether we keep our composure. You will learn that this reaction determines how successful we will be in overcoming—or possibly thriving because of—them.

Too often we react emotionally, get despondent, and lose our perspective. All that does is turn bad things into really bad things. Unhelpful perceptions can invade our minds—that sacred place of reason, action and will—and throw off our compass.

We decide what we will make of each and every situation. We decide whether we’ll break or whether we’ll resist. We decide whether we’ll assent or reject. No one can force us to give up or to believe something that is untrue (such as, that a situation is absolutely hopeless or impossible to improve). Our perceptions are the thing that we’re in complete control of.

A mistake becomes training

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