Egbuchunam Ngozika Amuche – Assessments

As a Man Thinketh
Assessment by Egbuchunam Ngozika Amuche (Nigeria)

1. What is the main idea that the author is trying to convey in the book?

The author is trying to cover the idea that a man is a reflection of what his thoughts are.

2. What were the seven ideas which were personally most important to you and why? List these seven ideas followed by an explanation after each one as to why it was important to you. Use personal examples from your own life.

i. Our thoughts are a reflection of who we are.

By what we consider and conceive in our minds, we act. These actions are the end products and the results of our thought processes. Occurrences in life do not just happen, they are a function of what we have processed of our situation. This in all areas of ramification reinstates the goal of the book “As a Man Thinketh.” To give it a more resolute title, I think, ” as a man thinketh, so is he” would be more ideal and expedient. Human beings are judged by their actions, and this goes a long way in defining who the world would see them be. Having established the fact that our acts are the end products of our thoughts, we can conclude that our thoughts truly are a reflection of who we are or at least a reflection of how the world sees us.

ii. Our thoughts either make us or destroy us.

Humans can think creatively, and this creativity can be either for good or bad. A man can conceive thoughts with which he can improve his life, break free from certain strongholds that hold him bound, and bring about development in the standard and quality of favors he gets, in the same vane, he can conceive thoughts that can invoke problems and curses upon him, destabilize his activities, and even possibly, ruin his life eventually.

iii. Our results are not a function of what we want, but who we are.

There’s a reason why the common saying: show me your friend and I will tell you who you are, is a credible statement to make. As humans, our thoughts are expressed as actions, and our motives, goals, and intents are constantly defined in the way we live our lives and go about our activities. As a result of this, people who are like-minded people who perceive us to be the kind of individuals that they would love to associate with for whatsoever reason get attracted. The decision of the individual as to the level to which he/she has decided to be close is now a function of either similar intents, or motives, or, an attraction to certain characteristics that would be complimentary. In the case of compliments, you discover that as a result of such association, an influence in character, thinking patterns, appearance, etc begins to take place.

iv. Our circumstances are a function of our thoughts.
The Bible says: guard your heart with all diligence, for out of it comes the issues of life. This is how important what emanates from our minds is. A man who sets out to steal conceives the thought of it before embarking on such. From it being a thought, it progresses on to the execution stage, where the thought is actualized. As a result of just this one thought, the lives of many are now in danger, properties will be lost, and in worst-case scenarios, people might die. Looking at things from another point of view, he just might get caught even before he can accomplish any of his goals and as a result of that can cause unnecessary pain from beatings and even death at worst. This is how our thought can manipulate our circumstances: either for good or for bad.

v. You can only help a person that wants to be helped.

Wanting to help a person is like wanting to change a person’s life. The only way that can be effective is if that person is willing to change his/her mind. In the absence of that, the person will hopelessly remain in his/her state. A change of mind is a conscious decision taken and implemented by a person and a person alone. At a stage in my life, I was downcast about a lot of difficulty and turbulence in my life. I was so sad, people around me got really worried. They tried to inquire from me what the issue was, I told them and as usual, suggestions started coming in as regards what I could do to make things better, but I was too absorbed in my problems to see the potency in the suggestions that were being given to me. They did their best and eventually allowed me to be. After some time, I thought to myself, having established the fact that worries don’t solve problems, and decided to take the bold step of merely stepping out of that mood so that I could see beyond my problems at least. I did so and discovered that a lot of solutions lied in the suggestions I was given, but because I refused to have a change of mind to at least try to snap out of my mood, I retained my problems.

vi. When you change your mind, you change your life.

A change of mind could have diverse effects. It can affect a person negatively as well as positively, but a change of mind will influence every other thing like your actions, circumstances, and so on, to change your life. Take, for example, a person who normally would fail in class and is determined to change his status of failure. He meticulously identifies the thought patterns and irregular and unhealthy habits that are responsible for such results and replace them with more viable ones that can lead him where he’s going and by so doing he changes his status, thereby changing his life.

vii. The magnitude of the effort we invest, determines the quality of our harvest.

As the common saying goes: you reap what you sow. This is another way of rephrasing the above statement. When we put in efforts towards achieving a common goal, we are bound to achieve results whether favorable or unfavorable. Now, when we consider precision in accomplishments, mere efforts will fail. We must sustain the drive to go the extra mile for us to achieve exactly what we desire. This is where the mind comes in. Before you break through a barrier, in reality, you must break through that barrier psychologically (in your mind) first. Once this is done, the courage and drive to put forward that painstaking ability comes on board and as such we can maximize our efforts to attain precisely the goal we want to achieve.

3. How will these ideas or lessons practically help you, both in your daily personal life and in helping you to create a better world? If so, how?

The lessons I’ve obtained in the course of reading this book will help me improve my view of life. It will help me achieve my one life goal, which is to show forth excellence in all that I do. It will help me understand my environment more and build better interpersonal skills. It will help me handle chaotic situations and conflict resolutions better. Furthermore, it will help me become even more visionary.

4. Quotes: Are there any statements which the author made that particularly got your attention? If so, please quote them and comment as to why they were important to you.

“A person is literally what she thinks, her character being the complete sum of all her thoughts.”

The summary of a man can be known through his character since it is a reflection of what goes on in his mind.

“Act is the blossom of thought, and joy and suffering are its fruits.”

This exactly is the reason why the common saying goes: actions speak louder than words. Our acts communicate our intent more than our words which are a reflection of our thoughts. And of course, there will always be consequences to actions.

“The human is made or unmade by him or herself; in the armory of thought he forges the weapons by which he destroys himself; he also fashions the tools with which he builds for himself heavenly mansions of joy and strength and peace.”

The power of thought is one that God has given to man to create his reality and to have an edge over his contemporaries. In as much as this tool has the power to make, it also has the power to mar an individual, if not properly utilized.

“A noble and Godlike character is not a thing of favor or chance but is the natural result of continued effort in right thinking, the effect of long-cherished association with Godlike thoughts.”

No one stumbles on righteousness. It is a function of constant practice; as they say: practice makes perfect.

“Men do not attract that which they want, but that which they are.”

The things that come to us obey the law of attraction more than they obey the word of mouth or mere desire. The reason why we do not get what we want often is that we have not conformed in alignment with the proper thought patterns that are capable of bringing those things our way.

5. Is there anything in the book that you do not understand or are unclear about, or are there ideas that you disagree with and, if so, why?

No, there’s none.

6. Did the book contain exercises for the reader to complete? If so, did you complete all of the exercises, and did you find them helpful?

No, the book didn’t contain any exercise.

7. Was there anything you read in the book that you would like to comment on that was not covered in the previous questions? If so, please comment.

Nothing else.

Please rate the following questions on a scale from 1 to 10. Ten is good and one is poor.

A. How interesting was it to read? 10
B. How helpful were the contents? 10
C. How easy was it to understand? 10
D. Would you recommend it to others? 10
E. What is the overall rating you would give it? 10

 

 

 

 

Jonathan Livingston Seagull
Assessment by Egbuchunam Ngozika Amuche (Nigeria)

1. What is the main idea that the author is trying to convey in the book?

The author is trying to convey the idea that you can accomplish anything you put your heart to.

2. What were the seven ideas which were personally most important to you and why? List these seven ideas followed by an explanation after each one as to why it was important to you. Use personal examples from your own life.

i. The antidote to limitations is passion.

Challenges and obstacles are a major part of life. We live in a world where it’s either you’re the hunter or the hunted, where both face the challenge and difficultly of overcoming and breaking through limitations. it’s even more difficult in some parts of the world like Nigeria where the elders are the leaders of tomorrow, where law enforcers define the blueprint for criminal tendencies, where thugs dictate the order of the day, where leadership is an opportunity for self-enrichment, where democracy is the excuse for corruption and inadequacy, where the Constitution is one for some,…, and the list goes on and on. In such an environment, it’s difficult to even see beyond your nose, it’s difficult to brace up, it’s difficult to uphold rightness and integrity, it’s difficult to trust. You wake up every day with the one big question, what’s in it for me? What’s in life for me? There’s even a greater temptation to adapt to the mindset of thinking that that’s the way life is. There’s a temptation to accept the stereotype as the normal; the new normal. it then becomes a constant struggle between that part of you that wants to settle and that part of you that wants to fight. As many who settle, live a good life; an ordinary life, as extraordinary isn’t for settlers. For us to overcome difficulties, challenges, obstacles and break through our limitations, we must sustain a level of passion that vetoes mediocrity. we must allow that burning desire in us to prevail. We must allow that unquenchable thirst and hunger for genuine change and success to pilot our affairs. We must look inward and believe in ourselves. Sometimes we just need to shut ourselves out of the world and reach for our destination; That’s what “extraordinary” is about.

ii. In every pursuit, there will always be downtimes.

Irrespective of what it is that you seek after or look forward to attaining, you will sometimes experience downtimes. Downtimes in the sense that there will always be things that will challenge you as against your will, you will sometimes experience overwhelming and extremely frustrating situations that will tempt you strongly to give up. It is usually a very difficult situation that will demand a lot of perseverance and patience. it will demand a lot of positivity and encouragement. A personal encounter with this would be when I first started my business. At first, things were looking good because I was more inclined towards learning; the business aspect of it wasn’t yet my priority. As time went on, people began to see what I could do; most especially my family. I got my first job which was to be done for an Aunt of mine. I invested my money, did the job delivered it to her and she promised to give the money to me at the end of that month. it was perfectly okay by me. The end of the month came, and as a result of proximity to me, she gave the money to her brother to give to me. she informed me about this. I called her brother, and he responded so pompously, trying to make me feel like he could give me the money whenever he chose. I felt really bad. I reported the issue to my mom and she told me to leave the money for him, that she would offset the bill but I wasn’t satisfied. I wanted that satisfaction and fulfillment that comes from reaping the fruit of your labor. I wanted that joy that comes from a satisfied customer paying for a commodity because he/she is glad. Eventually, I put a call across to her, reporting all that her brother had said. This made him even more infuriated. Well, the long and short of everything is that he eventually sent the money after that. Patronages I encountered after that weren’t better, and it’s one of the things that made me make up my mind never to do business with the family ever again. it got to a stage where my mom saw what I was going through and told me not to bother seeking customers that she would buy whatever I make and share to people. At that point, I was on the verge of giving up, not even my mom’s kind words were going to stop me. it was nothing like what I bargained for. As God would have it, something wonderful came up: a business deal. I made a lot of money from it and I got the reward I had always craved for. I got the true encouragement I deserved and that set the course for further opportunities for me. All of this happened to me in my teenage years; old teenage years though, probably within ages 16 to 19. It taught me resilience and perseverance and even more so, taught me that things will not always work out as they ought to.

iii. Our perception of the things that happen to us matters a lot.

In life, how we see things matter a lot. Many times, difficulties, and challenges are promotions in disguise. The No’s and cannot’s we get from people are merely just camouflaged avenues made available for us to gain expertise in our various fields. it may be painful but it will pay off in the end. Our perceptions are a function of our state of mind or thoughts. A positive thinking person will tend to have a better way of looking at things as compared to a negative person. A little bit of an exercise to this will be: when you see a glass half-filled with water what comes to your mind first? Is it the fact that the glass is half-full or half-empty? You can now see that in life, perception is everything. Perception is the reason why a person would fail over and over and over again and not be deterred in his or her effort. You see such a person display such a high level of perseverance and commitment. Amongst every other factor, perception is one of the major ingredients fuelling such a person’s resilience. The need for us to ward off negativity, and feast our minds on the positivity in every situation is of the essence and cannot be overemphasized.

iv. We should learn to be more open-minded and accommodating to innovations.

For growth to occur, we must be open to trying new things, or at least see what they are about, before making up our minds about them. We must grow beyond that level of thinking that forces us to conform to certain outdated patterns, stereotyped belief systems, and traditional norms, free ourselves and open up to the greater good. I got to know about an old traditional practice of the people in my place. Their common belief was that a woman needed not to go to school because she eventually would get married and all she will need to do will just be house chores, childbirth, and child care. No woman would need a certificate for that of course! Besides, as of the time, education wasn’t commonplace, it was a commodity for the rich. so better yet, let the man who will fend for the home have access and the women stay back washing dishes and preparing meals. This went on and on for so many decades. A whole lot of families had keyed into it so much so that it almost became a taboo for the discussion of educating the girl-child to even be brought up. A lot of talents made to waste, a lot of dreams unfulfilled, a lot of hopes, dashed to the wind, a lot of unhappy souls laid to rest. the same mindset kept passing on from generation to generation. it became a norm. Marriages were arranged for the young teenage girls as soon as they were “ripe” enough, as some men would say, and as a result of that, a woman had reached the zenith of her life’s purpose. In recent times, this no longer is the case. I cannot categorically point out the exact time or person who stood against such callous practices, as a result of lack of record-keeping, but the fact remains, that a person or people saw the light and made conscious decisions to walk it and that set a course for a more guaranteed future for the females of our nation. This is an example of what open-mindedness can do for a people or a person. it can breed transformations and bring about growth.

v. Knowledge truly is power.

Knowledge is a powerful tool for excellence. The Discovery of this has made a lot of generations blossom over the decades. Learning every day and improving on what you know is where the power mainly lies. By so doing, you get to discover the magic behind certain principles, and those certain principles give rise to other principles, and from this, hypotheses are carried out, theories are made and implementations take place. Consistent learning over some time helps you gain mastery. it feels that void of unquenchable curiosity in us and moves us to a higher pedestal where we can seek more. it opens us up to greater possibilities and helps us see things from a more creative and innovative point of view. it influences our thought patterns, breaks us out of mediocrity, and sets the pace for us to reach our goals and destinations. it puts us above our peers and singles us out of the crowd at all times. It elevates us and grants us the opportunity to grow over and beyond our expectations.

vi. In all that we do, let love lead.

Love is the only reason a person would go back to the ones who abandoned him/her to drown so that they may know the way to breathe underwater. Love is the reason why despite their adamant ideas, you still overlook, continually encourage, and still welcome as many that have a change of heart. Truly, love conquers all. it is an unbreakable quality that every individual should possess. it is a quality that makes the existence of man more bearable. When we show love and allow it to lead in all that we do, our personalities glow better and it influences our ways of thinking more positively.

vii. Never despise the days of little beginnings.

At the beginning of every struggle, sacrifices must always be made. These sacrifices come in different forms and may not always be easy to make, but the fact is, the moment we look beyond our threshold and do the required or the needful, we discover greater heights. As time progresses, it becomes even more evident that we have grown beyond certain levels. At that point, it’s easy to make reference to some of the challenges we faced and not pay so much attention to the pain and anguish of our former years. what we soon fail to realize is that the gravity of the sacrifices and difficulties we experienced are a function of the level to which we have now grown. Without the survival instincts, the sleepless nights, the continuous financing, the body aches, and even sometimes, the banter, we never may have made it to the levels that we occupy today. The struggles of today are our elevators of tomorrow and as such, we should put our hearts and minds in anything we do and do them diligently.

3. How will these ideas or lessons practically help you, both in your daily personal life and in helping you to create a better world? If so, how?

It will help me in assessing myself. Self-assessment is something I do from time to time, and this is a strong pointer to several things that I need to take more seriously and adhere strictly to. By so doing, I get to be a better person and as the common saying goes: if you want to change the world, change yourself first, I get a chance to change the world.

4. Quotes: Are there any statements which the author made that particularly got your attention? If so, please quote them and comment as to why they were important to you.

“It wasn’t long before Jonathan Gull was off by himself again, far out at sea, hungry, happy, learning.”

There’s a common saying: a hungry man is an angry man; but from the above statement, we can see that a man passionate about his dreams, even in the midst of hunger is a happy man.

“His vows of a moment before were forgotten, swept away in that great swift wind. Yet he felt guiltless, breaking the promises he had made himself. Such promises are only for the gulls that accept the ordinary. One who has touched excellence in his learning has no need of that kind of promise.”

Sometimes in life, we have our moments when we just want to burst out of our skin, and just not partake in that which gives us fulfillment anymore as a result of challenges and difficulty. Nonetheless, the moment we’re able to overcome it, we should cease every opportunity to chase our dreams once more without batting an eyelid on the resolves we may have come to.

“But you can Jonathan. For you have learned. One school is finished, and the time has come for another to begin.”

Learning never ends for anyone who has chosen to pursue excellence.

“We choose our next world through what we learn in this one. Learn nothing, and the next world is the same as this one, all the same limitations and lead weights to overcome.”

The challenges we overcome today form the survival strategies of our tomorrow. So therefore, we should take every lesson seriously.

“You will begin to touch heaven, Jonathan, in the moment that you touch perfect speed. And that isn’t flying a thousand miles an hour, or a million, or flying at the speed of light. Because any number is a limit, and perfection doesn’t have limits.”

Perfection is a limitless state. If we must attain it, we must break beyond the barriers of our mind.

5. Is there anything in the book that you do not understand or are unclear about, or are there ideas that you disagree with and, if so, why?

“Forget about faith!” Chiang said it time and again. “You didn’t need faith to fly, you needed to understand flying.”

I disagree with this statement. Definitely, understanding aided his ability to fly, but if he did not have the belief in himself that attaining greater heights in flight were possible, he would have remained like the other gulls in the flock. He believed he could do something to which he did not know the possibility, and that defines faith.

6. Did the book contain exercises for the reader to complete? If so, did you complete all of the exercises, and did you find them helpful?

No, there weren’t any exercises.

7. Was there anything you read in the book that you would like to comment on that was not covered in the previous questions? If so, please comment.

No.

Please rate the following questions on a scale from 1 to 10. Ten is good and one is poor.

A. How interesting was it to read? 10
B. How helpful were the contents? 10
C. How easy was it to understand? 10
D. Would you recommend it to others? 10
E. What is the overall rating you would give it? 10

Keys to Success
Assessment by Egbuchunam Ngozika Amuche (Nigeria)

1. What is the main idea that the author is trying to convey in the book?

The author is examining the various necessities and factors that can increase the probability of attaining success and ensure that we remain successful.

2. What were the seven ideas which were personally most important to you and why? List these seven ideas followed by an explanation after each one as to why it was important to you. Use personal examples from your own life.

i. Definiteness of purpose is a must-have for anyone who wants to be successful.

My lifelong goal is to show forth excellence in all that I do and that alone has brought about a lot of changes to my life. It has made my quest for learning new things and self-development even more intense and intriguing. I tend to pay more attention to my strengths and capitalize more on them to get to where I want to be in life. It has disciplined me to know the things in life that are important and are a necessity for my growth. It has enabled me to channel my energy and enthusiasm towards the right things. It has defined for me the caliber of people I should have in my inner circle and the kind of activities I should involve myself in. It has broadened my horizon and patterned my thoughts towards accomplishing my vision. It constantly drives my motives and has even, in general, improved my relationship with people.

ii. Teamwork breeds magic.

I, for one, have always been a strong advocate and believer of teamwork. Once upon a time, I was the chairman of a planning committee that was to plan a dinner party for the celebration of our end of session/ Final year Brethren (FYB). In that event, there were to be awards presented to certain notable personalities amongst us that had been exceptional in various regards. This was an idea I came up with to spice up the event as it never really had been done before, and I felt it would be a grand way of appreciating people and encouraging them to keep up the good work. I kind of had an idea though but there was still a lot to figure out, so, I gave the responsibility to one of the committee members giving her a brief overview of what I was trying to accomplish and I was stunned at what she came up with. It ended up being grander than I expected and even made the event more spectacular. Forming alliances with well-meaning people of similar interests always makes our plans are more quintessential and appreciable. It’s literarily like you having spare brains at your disposal, or even, having the power to superimpose” mind-power” in a way that can create magic in whatever you do.

iii. Harnessing the power of our minds is essential.

The mind is a powerful tool that can either make or break a person. We must channel its power to enable us to reach our various goals. I think that the main power of creation and formulation that the mind has lies in its subconscious part. The more pictures are projected through the conscious part constantly and consistently over some time, the more we infuse the thoughts we want our subconscious mind to formulate and feast on. Now, if we subject our goals to this power, we soon will be able to think creatively as to how to reach our goals and come up with blockbuster ideas that will form the foundation of the force of drive with which we will be willing to overcome any obstacle on our way and come out at the top. As a result of this, the probability of us attaining greater heights becomes assured.

iv. “Faith it until you make it.”

Faith is the only option that exists when we’re out of options when the chips are down and it seems like we have met our Waterloo. It is the presence of victory even before we become victorious and the absence of failure even in failure. It is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things unseen. Faith is a necessity if one must move beyond the definiteness of purpose. Giving a realistic example, if a person knows where he/she is going and chooses not to go just because the environment is not safe, or because he/she is not sure of the weather the condition of the day, such a person will not accomplish more than merely knowing where he/she wants to go. There’s always a risk in everything as far as like is concerned and faith is the ingredient that can bridge that risk gap and make your journey seem seamless.

v. Tact is everything.

Going through this book, I realized that this is the one I have been trying to get right for so long. Just knowing the right act, the right timing, the right moment, etc is everything. I used to think that it was necessary to always be the one to create happiness and merriment in any environment I found myself in. Not that this is bad, but then I realized that I overdid it. Even with people I didn’t know, people I wasn’t friends with, and people I didn’t associate as much with, I did that, and at all times, irrespective of their mood or the environment. This made me probably come off as one who always just sought attention, which was not the case. Ever since I learned the power of positivity, I just love to create that environment wherever I go. Though some persons loved me for it, it brought just as much “unwantedness.” The answer to this was tact. Only, I wish I knew earlier.

vi. Prayer is your greatest power.

Whether we like it or not, there is a spiritual world that controls the physical. As tripartite beings, the only way we can grow spiritually is by praying regularly, which will be an advantage to us because, as I said before – the spiritual controls the physical. By doing this, we engage spiritual forces to wade into our situations physically and make for the necessary interventions

vii. Positivity makes everything better.
Problems, challenges, difficulties, etc are often a function of our perception. If we learn to have or maintain a positive outlook on everything, we will tend to encounter less of these negativities. The only way we can accomplish this is by putting forward a positive attitude towards life. The need for optimism, faith, cheerfulness, etc cannot be overemphasized for someone who wishes to be successful and achieve their goals in life.

3. How will these ideas or lessons practically help you, both in your daily personal life and in helping you to create a better world? If so, how?

The lessons I’ve obtained in the course of reading this book will help me improve the quality of my life most especially with regards to self-development and my attitude towards success. I intend to work more on being tactful and speaking effectively, to improve my personality. In addition, I intend to improve myself on my craft and strengthen my ability to be a better team player, to increase my chances of forming alliances with people of standard.

4. Quotes: Are there any statements that the author made that particularly got your attention? If so, please quote them and comment as to why they were important to you.

“A person’s personality is the person.”

I couldn’t possibly agree less. Your personality is what makes you, you. A person may not know your name, but just by a description of your personality, people can already tell that you’re the one of interest. Taking time to invest in yourself and grow your personality is the best reward you can give yourself.

“Quality plus the quantity of service rendered plus positive mental attitude equals our compensation in the world.”

This is the right formula to enable any person who sincerely wants to succeed, to pay the price and go the extra mile.

“Self-discipline begins with a mastery of your thoughts.”

Of course! As a man thinketh, so is he. The mind is an expression that will examine anything we feed it with, so one must gain control over what the mind is fed with, as failure to do this can lead to indiscipline which can proceed to cause addictions and other psychologically related issues.

“Your failures and successes are a result of your habits.”

If you observe good habits, you will reap the fruit of good habits, and if you don’t, you’ll reap bad habits and that applies to success and failure as well.

5. Is there anything in the book that you do not understand or are unclear about, or are there ideas that you disagree with and, if so, why?

No, there’s none.

6. Did the book contain exercises for the reader to complete? If so, did you complete all of the exercises, and did you find them helpful?

Yes, the book contained exercises. I did them and found them helpful.

7. Was there anything you read in the book that you would like to comment on that was not covered in the previous questions? If so, please comment.

None.

Please rate the following questions on a scale from 1 to 10. Ten is good and one is poor.

A. How interesting was it to read? 10
B. How helpful were the contents? 10
C. How easy was it to understand? 10
D. Would you recommend it to others? 10
E. What is the overall rating you would give it? 10

PsychoCybernetics
Assessment by Egbuchunam Ngozika Amuche (Nigeria)

1. What is the main idea that the author is trying to convey in the book?

The author is examining how, the way we see ourselves can influence our behaviors, outcomes, and life at large.

2. What were the seven ideas which were personally most important to you and why? List these seven ideas followed by an explanation after each one as to why it was important to you. Use personal examples from your own life.

i. The power of self.

The way and manner in which we perceive ourselves, go a long way in determining how far we go in terms of accomplishments, life goals, and even life in general. As an individual, I have never really considered a time in my life where money or basic material needs will pose as difficult for me, not because I’m from a wealthy family, or because I have some form of assurance somewhere that guarantees that, or even because I have the best ideas for wealth creation. There have been times when the chips were down, when my hopes were nothing more than a tiny piece of feather, dashed to the wind, there have been times when all I could do was look to the hills from whence cometh my help, but in all, I would not despair. I held unto the fact that God had blessed me with too many gifts, and for so long as “a man’s gift maketh way for him”, I could never lack. Even though not every effort I put into self-development yielded the kind of expectations I desired, I still continually saw myself as a powerful person who will do great things in my generation and fulfill my lifelong goal, which is to show forth excellence in all that I do. I have always carried this mindset and allowed it guide me. The power that I conceive in me is one that has driven me to do things even beyond my expectations. Even at a time in my life when I was about to give up on all of my dreams due to the pressures of life, the power I had exuded over time had spoken to people to the extent that their testimonies brought me back on track. It was almost as though God used them as a channel to make me know that all I was passing through was his will for me at the moment and the path on which I had to thread for him to reveal/unravel more of the potentials in me. Today I have a well-paid job and I’m living the life I’ve always desired which is very much in line with who I see myself to be.

ii. Psychological judgments always outweigh that of the physical.

From the book, we could see the testimonies of individuals who had undergone some form of surgical procedures and were satisfied as well as the ones who weren’t. For the ones who weren’t, we could see that the issue many times wasn’t necessarily the corrections they proposed, which were worked on, but the fact that the surgery didn’t actually fix their psychological view of the problem. As such we can conclude that the true inner satisfaction we desire is actually a function of our psychological view and understanding of an issue as opposed to the physical. I watched two movies at very different times. They were both centered around an individual in a quadriplegic state. In the first movie, the man was formerly in the army. He had amassed so much wealth for himself and had recently gotten married at a young age- possibly mid-thirties. Unfortunately, he was attacked by a chronic virus infection which left him completely paralyzed. But to my surprise, despite his condition, he maintained his usual cheerful personality, still paid as much attention to all of his fantasies and adventurous lifestyle with the aid of his wife and son, and in general, lived a full life. He had research scientists make him customized gadgets that could aid him in accomplishing all of his fantasies, some of which involved even, skydiving. To my greatest surprise, I discovered it was a true-life story. The other was about a very successful billionaire barrister. He was run into by a bike while crossing the road. This left him paralyzed for life. To cut the long story short, he opted for the services of “Dignitas.” After so much persuasion from both his parents, caregiver and even a love interest, he still went ahead with his decision. Reading this book lead me to do a comparison between these two individuals and I realized, that the difference was just their psychological judgments of themselves. While one didn’t allow his situation to define him and still went on to live his best life, the other saw it as a yardstick to imply that he was no longer worthy of living. Only I wish, there could have been an event of both individuals meeting, just maybe the second guy might have been convinced that he could have been more.

iii. Use your imagination.

Utilizing our imagination as individuals is very necessary as it is a key tool in the proper definition of ourselves. For us to exude and display that aura of the kind of person we have chosen to be or want to be, we must utilize our imagination. As a youngster, I underrated how much our thoughts and imaginations could transcend the physical and bear witness to our goals. I’ve always wanted to be financially independent, I’ve always wanted to be able to pursue the things I have an interest in without any obstructions or intrusions from family and I constantly always thought of ways to make this happen without hurting anyone. Channeling my power of imagination and backing it up with the word of God which I strongly believe in, I would always see myself doing big things, speaking in conferences, coordinating operations and so many more that strongly resonated with me. For some reason, I wasn’t really seeing how all of these things would come to reality. Even more so, the more I tried to figure it out, the further I was away from my goal. So I chose to trust and just leave things to God, staying true to my diligent approach to doing things and life-long goal which is to show forth excellence. Today I have achieved even greater than my expectations, and it is even more glaring, that the sky is nothing close to my limit. At the end of the day, I can gladly say that the power of imagination, diligence, and consistency can take you anywhere you want to be.

iv. Mental picturing increases the probability of success.

As a youngster, my dad introduced me to his beloved sport- golf. I didn’t really have a very keen interest, but I wasn’t opposed to learning it, so I went along with his desire for me to be a golfer. On the first day of training, I was taught how to handle a “club” and basically hit the ball, not minding the direction it went. The essence was to get me acquainted with that very basic procedure, because, come to think of it, that’s what the game is about in a nutshell. Then after, it was time to get serious; I was required to hit the ball in a particular direction. The instruction was to look at the location to which you’re hitting the ball and then keep your eyes on the ball. As a novice, my instincts set in as to how I felt playing it would help me reach my goal. I looked at the ball, positioned the “club” properly, and kept staring at my location, after some seconds I look at the ball and immediately hit it, and it went in a completely different direction. He repeated it after placing another ball in front of me, “eyes on the ball”. This time I did it his way, the ball went in a different direction. I tried again…and then again, and again, and again…, It just wasn’t working; my best trial was kind of close. He decided I should take a break since it was my first attempt. He applauded me. I sat not too far from the pitch as I watched a golfer play. He had just begun he’s game. I could see him aim at the hole very far away. It was some good distance, and I thought to myself, how would he make it? I kept watching. He looked at the location for some seconds, positioned himself, and with rapt attention to the ball, he hit it and it went exactly in that direction and landed very close to his destination. I was stunned and wanted to try again. I walked into the field, I imitated him but made little progress. I continued trying and after the next few shots, I finally got my breakthrough. I discovered that the reason I wasn’t getting it in the first place wasn’t because I was not looking at the ball, but because, my mental picturing was misplaced. The moment I placed my focus and aligned the ball in the direction it was supposed to go, in my mind, it played out in reality.

v. The power of hypnosis is the power of belief.

While growing up, I was subjected to some form of bullying. I would say the kind that existed within the home- basically among siblings. This kind of induced a certain feeling in me that I needed some form of validation from people at all times just so that I could feel accepted and loved. Whenever kids were mean to me, whenever I got a “No”, or even, when people would merely just not respond to me the way I envisaged, this drove very strong emotional pains down my spine. I never really understood it, even though I knew it was abnormal. Other people, I had observed never felt this way whenever they experienced any of the aforementioned scenarios. It made me always tensed and anxious. I always felt afraid as to whether I would deliver even the things I knew I could, whenever I was called upon, and this became a way of life for me. For many years as a teenager, I was that way. It made me utterly aggressive and extremely impatient. I grew older, left for the University, and made up my mind to make things better. After some years, with divine intervention through the study of the word and obedience to a lot of even more painful exercises God took me through, I was able to conquer and be the person that I am today. Today I realized that the genesis of all I went through was me believing and keying into all of the things that were done and said to me which was a deep-rooted mental picture I had to break away from. Anyways, my life journey hasn’t been the most palatable, but in all, I’m thankful I went through this and with the aid of this book, have a better understanding, so my kids wouldn’t have to.

vi. Willpower alone is insufficient to change our bad ideas about ourselves

I was watching a short clip on Facebook. It was a little experiment, a beautiful one, very easy to understand. A candle was lit and placed on a tray of oil. A glass jar was then used to cover the candle against the tray of oil and immediately, the oil started rising in the jar till the candlelight went off. Trying to understand what happened in there, the idea quickly came to me, that since fire requires oxygen to burn, and it was boxed up by the jar, it utilized all of the oxygen that was enclosed in the jar and as a result of that, the oil started rising to fill the space the air had left in the jar. This led me to realize that nothing is truly empty, whether you think of this literarily or figuratively. That empty glass cup isn’t truly empty, it’s filled with air. The only way you can take out that air, is by pouring a liquid or something into it. So also is the yearning to want to change the way we see ourselves. Bad ideas or notions we have of ourselves will not change just because we have the willpower or because we are willing to, but they will because we are willing to adopt new ideas that will counter and eradicate old ones.

vii. We should learn to live one day at a time.

We live in a very fast-paced world, where people are so anxious to quickly make a difference and make an appearance that they are not- pressures everywhere. We live in a world where worry is the order of the day and there’s just too much to deliberate upon. As the Bible said, ” do not worry about tomorrow, for today has enough troubles of its own”. We must cultivate the habit of focusing on what is presently before us and as such live life, one day at a time. This will liberate us of a lot of stress, pressures, and worries and help us to improve our health.

3. How will these ideas or lessons practically help you, both in your daily personal life and in helping you to create a better world? If so, how?

The lessons I’ve obtained in the course of reading this book have taught me to not take for granted the psychological, emotional, financial, and even spiritual impact, the perception of self can have on how we live our lives.

4. Quotes: Are there any statements that the author made that particularly got your attention? If so, please quote them and comment as to why they were important to you.

“Discovering your real self means the difference between freedom and the compulsions of conformity.”

I couldn’t possibly agree less. In a world where everyone has a defined pattern as to how they think life should be lived, it is necessary to have discovered yourself as a person. Haven’t undergone self-discovery will only mean one thing -“Conformity”.

“Thus man of all creatures is more than a creature, he is also a creator.”

Sometimes, I find it really amazing how much man has displayed creativity since the beginning of time. History’s documentation on how the bushmen lived and the nature of the technologies they were able to employ in building their crude tools is mind-blowing, not to even talk of the phenomenal inventions and hardcore technologies being applied in recent times. It’s really amazing how much God invested in us and a true testimony of that part of the good book that says “…ye are God’s…”

“A human being always acts and feels and performs in accordance with what he imagines to be true about himself and his environment.”

“As a man thinketh, so he is. If your imaginations are governed by ill-mannered thoughts about yourself, it will reflect in your actions, disposition, and a whole lot of other things about your life. The personality of a person is actually a defined system of ideas or pattern of behavior to which any other idea or behavior that doesn’t conform to that system or pattern is rejected. So literarily, we can think of our personalities as a sieve that is constantly vetting subject matters to come in alignment with what it is defined to be.”

“The late Dr. Albert Edward Wiggam called your mental picture of yourself “the strongest force within you.”

This is very true because mental picturing is the portal that exists between where you currently are in reality and where you want to be. It is the quickest means through which tomorrow can meet today.

5. Is there anything in the book that you do not understand or are unclear about, or are there ideas that you disagree with and, if so, why?

No, there’s none.

6. Did the book contain exercises for the reader to complete? If so, did you complete all of the exercises, and did you find them helpful?

Yes, the book contained exercises. I did them and found them helpful.

7. Was there anything you read in the book that you would like to comment on that was not covered in the previous questions? If so, please comment.

None.

Please rate the following questions on a scale from 1 to 10. Ten is good and one is poor.

A. How interesting was it to read? 10
B. How helpful were the contents? 10
C. How easy was it to understand? 10
D. Would you recommend it to others? 10
E. What is the overall rating you would give it? 10

Success through a Positive Mental Attitude
Assessment by Egbuchunam Ngozika Amuche (Nigeria)

1. What is the main idea that the author is trying to convey in the book?

The author is trying to convey the idea that a positive mental attitude is instrumental to us in achieving our goals or becoming successful in life, irrespective of what our circumstances are.

2. What were the seven ideas which were personally most important to you and why? List these seven ideas followed by an explanation after each one as to why it was important to you. Use personal examples from your own life.

i. Our thoughts are most likely a reflection of our future.

This still boils down to the common old saying that; “as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” This was a very instrumental point for me because overtime I’ve come to realize that there’s nothing that can be born without conception. The “womb” of our goals and success is our mind. This God-giving tool is everything that can make and break a man. For me, warding off a lot of debris from my mind and focusing it on the exact things I want to accomplish hasn’t been the easiest of things I’ve been able to do. Having a change of mind is just as difficult as trying to change ones gender which is not as difficult these days. But in all, it’s been the greatest fight I’ve won against life. I wake up every day and I’m grateful for the gift of change. The fact that I can channel my innermost desires into my reality just by nursing them in my mind and taking adequate steps and measures as God instructs, to see them come to pass. The only reason as to how I know that my future is bright is because I see it in my dreams; it’s on my mind all day long.

ii. A positive mental attitude is the key to success achievement and consistency.

In life, there are so many hurdles to cross. As a child, the first hurdle I had to cross was the stronghold my parents had on me. Not that they didn’t want the best for me, but they tried to define the path to success in a particular way that the world was no longer going. They tried to define character and personality in a way that was now old-fashioned to our current world. Not that “old-fashioned” was bad, but it would be “extra-restricting” in a world of so many opportunities. In all I can’t blame them. These norms were passed on to them by their parents and of course, it’s all they know. I had to subtly break away from so many things with God’s intervention. It required lots of skill and wisdom, some of which I fell victim due to wrong application. But in all, my strong desire and PMA to not give in was sufficient. I struggled with societal beliefs, bullying, and so many other unforseen circumstances. The worst of them all was my struggle with myself. Constantly finding the courage to get up again whenever I was knocked down was not the easiest of things I fought through. A lot of heart aches, fear that seemed so unconquerable, words that seemed so inexpressible, inner boldness that sometimes felt like defeat, all of these and many more were and still are some of the things I fight till date. One of the most beautiful mental attitude I adopted long time ago, that I could almost assume I was born with is my ability to encourage myself. I mean, it’s not like I can pinpoint exactly when I adopted this attitude, but at least it took some identifying and getting used to, to be able to use it to my advantage. A PMA is everything. Just knowing and having that faith that you will accomplish anything you put your heart to, is everything. I’m a living testimony.

iii. Memorize, Understand and repeat frequently.

This is the key to gaining mastery. If you must be successful, you must know exactly what you want, you must gain understanding as to what you need to enable you attain it, you must be willing to put in the effort to achieve it, and you must frequently remind yourself of whatever this goal may be, as it will serve as a good pivot to lead you and vet your actions and decisions. As ambiguous as my true desire has always been- to be great and outstanding, I never really had a more explicit definition to it, but the thought of this desire made me behave a certain way; it made me desist from certain things even without being told, it made me place my focus more on certain things and even more so, it helped me identify that ingredient of greatness in the individuals whom I look up to and those who have mentored me to become the person I am today and also the person I look forward to becoming in the future. I cannot overemphasize how instrumental, repeating my greatest desires to myself have been to me. It’s like a sieve that lets everything that is not in alignment with it’s purpose out, and retains everything that will get me to where I want to be.

iv. Accurate thinking is a necessity for success.

The battles of the mind constantly terrorize our lives. Many times, its easier to just succumb and do what’s easy, but I’ve come to realize that accurate thinking can actually help ease out this struggle. In order to be successful, one must balance reason and emotions. No one should outweigh the other. Evaluating myself, I could see clearly that I had been a little bit more tilted towards the emotional side, than reason, no wonder some habits I’ve struggled to part ways with have given me serious tough-time. I’ve tried to discipline myself to work with certain routines at one point in time or the other, and I can see how allowing emotions creep in sometimes made the whole thing even more cumbersome. On the other hand, I can also see how considering reason has made me seem careless and inconsiderate sometimes. Finding the balance is not always easy, but at the end of the day, that’s what life is about- finding balance.

v. Positive word affirmation can reinstate your focus towards the success you desire.

Word affirmation is very powerful. Constantly reminding yourself of who you are, what you want to be, the things you wish to accomplish goes a long way in influencing our subconscious which is where most of the magic happens and beautiful things, birthed as a result. I remember vividly as a child, I could do quite tedious sums off head, and that was because I had constantly feasted my mind on activities of that nature, to the point where in my dreams even, this activities continually played out and even formulated for me, other ways and tricks with which I could get sums done even faster. I was so good at it that my older siblings would tease me about it and make me do some basic arithmetic for them. Word affirmation is very similar to this. The more you feast your mind on the person you want to be, the greater your chances at becoming that person.

vi. Inspirational dissatisfaction

This is one of those cliche phenomenons that we often make use of, without ever acknowledging. This encapsulated the whole idea of the- never give up spirit. This is one of the oldest principles I’ve held on to for so long without even knowing. Getting to see it from the point view of how it interpreted as PMA is just breath-taking. Failure only truly occurs when we throw in the towel. What we refer to as failure many times is success in the making and for so long as we keep being resilient and diligent in all that we do, victory is assured for us, and that’s what inspirational dissatisfaction is about- channelling your dissatisfaction as the fuel you need to keep pushing.

vii. Try something new!

I always loved quantitative reasoning back then in my primary school. It was one of my favorite subjects. Even after promotion to the next class, I usually kept busy with the rest of the exercises. What I loved about it was the fact that it tasked me with the responsibility of deciphering the logic employed in a particular exercise. The only way to go about this was to keep trying different methods, until eventually, I found the one. Because of my relentless nature of wanting to see things through to the end, I always tried everything I knew exhaustively, and even when it would seem to be unsolvable, I would try something new.

3. How will these ideas or lessons practically help you, both in your daily personal life and in helping you to create a better world? If so, how?

One of the greatest lessons I’m taking from this book is that our circumstances, background and things beyond our control all pan out at the end of the day to make our successes even grander. The reason why people are rewarded by being on the Guinness book of record is not because they are the only ones in their categories that can do such, but because against all odds and in very rare circumstances, they have proven to be outstanding. I used to question my background a lot and think to myself that if things were a bit different I would be better off. But the truth is all things work together for the good of those that love God. My life wouldn’t be as spectacular as it is, if I didn’t achieve all I have achieved despite the odds.

4. Quotes: Are there any statements that the author made that particularly got your attention? If so, please quote them and comment as to why they were important to you.

“He kept his mind on the things he did want and off the things, he didn’t want.”

Once you have your mind set on what you desire to achieve, it is necessary that you ward off distractions. A proper focus on what you want will help you identify opportunities to achieve it when you see it.
“If you know what you want, you are more apt to recognize it when you see it.”

The start-point of success is a sincere desire. You need to want it, you need to crave and yearn for it. Once this is accomplished, it paves the way for opportunities that can help you achieve it, to come your way.

“You have everything to gain and nothing to lose by trying. Success is achieved and maintained by those who keep trying with PMA.”

The only thing there is to gain by not trying is regrets. The more we try, the more we build competence, perseverance and character.

“One of the cobwebs of our thinking is to assume that we act from reason alone when in reality every conscious act is the result of doing what we want to do.”

Many at times, the things we do are a product of the pleasures we crave. This pleasures usually go beyond reason. They are majorly a function of the things we want, and not the things we need.

“Necessity motivates a man with PMA to action without transgressing recognized inviolable standards.”

As a person who is positively driven, daring situations will not prompt you to consider evil, but rather, help you explore your abilities, open you up to greater possibilities and get you ahead in life.

5. Is there anything in the book that you do not understand or are unclear about, or are there ideas that you disagree with and, if so, why?

No, there’s none.

6. Did the book contain exercises for the reader to complete? If so, did you complete all of the exercises, and did you find them helpful?

Yes, the book contained exercises. I did them and found them helpful.

7. Was there anything you read in the book that you would like to comment on that was not covered in the previous questions? If so, please comment.

None.

Please rate the following questions on a scale from 1 to 10. Ten is good and one is poor.

A. How interesting was it to read? 10
B. How helpful were the contents? 10
C. How easy was it to understand? 10
D. Would you recommend it to others? 10
E. What is the overall rating you would give it? 10