The Magic of Thinking Big

Posted December 1, 2014 in Self-Insight, What We're Reading

By: David J. Schwartz, Ph.D.

Review by: Julie Melaschenko

The Premise: With all of its Mad Men-era charm intact, The Magic of Thinking Big reads like a modern day self-help rosetta stone. Salaries, job descriptions and cultural norms may shift and change, but as this 56-year-old bestseller proves, humans have not.  Lack of self-confidence, negative thinking and bad attitudes get in the way of success, prosperity and happiness, and have been for more than half a century. What this book sets out to demonstrate is that many of the barriers to success are predominantly in our heads.  We fail to succeed because we don’t believe we can, we create excuses that don’t hold water and accept that there is nothing within our control when it comes to getting what we want out of life.  While that might sound trite, the author does a tremendous job of countering each and every point with short, easy-to-read and digest mini chapters.  Topics include believing in yourself, thinking big, cultivating creativity, taking actions towards your goals, how to think like a leader, among many others. Well-written with useful examples, anecdotes and actionable suggestions, there’s definitely a reason why this book has stood the test of time.

The Bottom-line: I came across this book recently through my research for this newsletter – it was quoted by some of the more recent leadership gurus and mentioned in articles, so I put it in my Amazon cart. I was surprised by some of the historical references (“currently, there is some talk of building a tunnel under the English Channel…”) and wondered how and if this book could be relevant even now.  What I liked the most was that it ended up being the right book at the right time – getting my 2015 planning goals, both personally and professionally aligned and ready, the book is very positive and just what I need to believe I can do anything.  As the book describes, setting goals for success and happiness is one thing, believing that I can achieve them and removing my own mental blocks will make the difference between dreams and reality.

Roundtable Rating: Pairs well with goal setting and New Year’s resolutions – a great mental pep talk to help achieve personal and professional success.

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