Charles Reade said it best in his most quoted maxim, “Sow an act and you reap a habit. Sow a habit and you reap a character. Sow a character and you reap a destiny.” The premise of "Habits of the Mind" is that you are what you think about. All of your thoughts shape and create whom you are, they mold you into the person you have become and whom you will be in the future. What we think shapes and determines our character and the outcome of our life.
What I learned:
Our thoughts influence many parts of our life based on research conducted by the author. He explains how our thoughts influence and shapes our attitudes, change our emotions, behaviors, spiritual perspective, character and even influences our immune system.
Your entire person is shaped by what you take in and what you think about. It's important to be aware of what you allow into your mind because ultimately it shapes your thinking as the saying goes “Garbage in, garbage out.” If you want great things to come out of your life, you must put great thinking into your life.
We live in an environment that moves at the speed of light, putting our minds under continuous strain. This creates a very frantic and fractured mindset or thinking pattern that creates a frantic and fractured life. We must make time to think and nurture good thoughts while creating an environment where our minds are not being consistently inundated with frantic and fractured inputs.
Finally, the book covers 10 healthy thinking habits for a healthy mind. They are:
- Learn to see the best in others.
- Give yourself permission to fail.
- Keep your conscience clear.
- Don't continuously punish yourself for making mistakes, learn to let go.
- Value life's little blessing.
- Accentuate the positive.
- Learn to be an optimist.
- Accept yourself for who you are.
- Stay with the results you desire.
- Cherish your creators love and wisdom.
If you nurture these habits of thinking, they will nurture your life. By changing your thinking, you change who you are no matter where you’ve been either negative or positive. Your thinking controls how you respond to the ebbs and flow of life.
In summary, the author challenges everyone who has read his material to not read it as sound bites or an instant cure all. These principles are tantamount to a 5 course meal that you must savor and take your time to digest. These principles, if practiced, will change the habits of your thinking and your mind over time. It's not instant, but neither are the laws of the farm. These laws take time, and you will reap the benefits if you practice them.
Principles of Execution Key Concepts:
- Habits of the Mind
- Thanking Habits
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