As you read this column, think about if you are completely happy with your life and everything you are doing. If so, congratulations, as in today’s times you are a very rare person.
If, however, you still have some goals you would like to reach and have a strong desire to improve yourself in a variety of ways, then read on because I have some ideas that will be of value to you. And please keep in mind what the late Will Rogers had to say about learning. He said, “It is just as important to be reminded as it is to be educated.” None of us is smart enough to remember everything we know, and sometimes a little reminder of the right things at the right time can make a big difference in our lives.
Back in 1970 I was privileged to go into business with the late Bob Gannaway, my former Dale Carnegie instructor, to sell and distribute the Earl Nightingale Attitude Motivation messages that were recorded on cassette. In case you may not know, Earl Nightingale was known as the Dean of Personal Motivation and his daily radio show “Our Changing World” was carried by more than 1,000 radio stations, making it the most successful commercially sponsored radio programs in the history of American broadcasting. He was also one of the few survivors of the battleship Arizona when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor.
While you may have heard it before, the reason I share this background information is because one of his recordings titled “The Strangest Secret” was the only inspirational recording in history to ever sell a million copies. The strangest secret is simply that we become what we think about, something most of knows but spend very little time thinking about. The Bible says it another way, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he” — Proverbs 23:7. Well, believe it or not, this is why most people do not have the things they would like to have or be the kind of person they would like to be.
Yes, it really comes down to our thinking, and the bottom line is that most of us do not have an “abundance” mindset. Rather, we have a “scarcity” mindset, which is to say we place limitations on our thinking. The other day I heard the best example I have ever heard that clearly demonstrates the true abundance that is there for each of us to claim and to use for our own advantage. If you have ever gone to the ocean and sat on the beach, did you notice how the waves came in one right after the other? And as long as you sat there, even for hours they just kept coming one after the other. Yes, there is an abundance of waves and water that is right before us as far as the eye can see. There is opportunity all around us in the same way.
We also see other examples of nature that confirm this principle. If we plant one bushel of potato seed in the ground, we can get back 60 bushels of potatoes in return. A single tomato seed can multiply itself a million times in a year. Ten forests can come out of one acorn. Plant a pound of onion seed and we may reap 10 tons of onions. One twig from an apple tree planted in the ground may become a great tree, producing foliage and blossoms and fragrance and fruit not just one year, but for many years, multiplied many, many times. And there are countless other examples. In our mind we must think abundance and not be weighed down with negative people, negative news and negative events that take place all around us every single day.
(Editor’s Note: JIM DAVIDSON is an author, public speaker, syndicated columnist and Founder of the Bookcase for Every Child project. Since its inception in 1995, Jim’s column has been self-syndicated to over 375 newspapers in 35 states making it one of the most successful in the history of American journalism.)