Quotes and Excerpts - Management

Excerpts from

Thinking for a Change

11 Ways Highly Successful People Approach Life and Work

by John Maxwell, Injoy, GPN

(Warner Books, 2003)

"...the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things..."  2 Timothy 4:2-5

Endorsement (back cover): "If you want to go places you've never been before--you have to think in ways you've never thought before. This book by Hohn Maxwell will teach you how to do that!"  Ken Blanchard, coauthor of the One Minute Manager

Skill 6:  Why you should feel the energy of possibility thinking.   (158)

People who embrace possibility thinking are capable of accomplishing tasks that seem impossible because they believe in solutions. Here are several reasons why you should become a possibility thinker:

1. Possibility Thinking Increases your Possibilities

When you believe you can do something difficult --and you succeed -- many doors open for you.....

3. Possibility Thinking Increases Others' possibilities

Big thinkers who make things happen also create possibilities for others. That happens, in part, because it's contagious. You can't help but become more confident and think bigger when you're around possibility thinkers. But possibility thinking also impacts others in more direct ways....

4. Possibility Thinking Allows you to Dream Big Dreams

No matter what your profession, possibility thinking can help you to broaden your horizon (160) and dream bigger dreams. Professor David J. Schwartz  [one of the foremost experts on motivation] believes, "Big thinkers are specialists in creating positive forward-looking, optimistic pictures in their own minds and in the minds of others."

In 1970, when I was twenty-three years old, I read a book that made a major impact on how I dream. It was called Move Ahead with Possibility Thinking, by Robert Schuller. As a young pastor in the my first church, it thrilled me to read about how Schuller overcame seemingly impossible circumstances to build a huge church in Garden Grove, California. When I read the following words, my world changed: "The greatest churches have yet to be organized." 160  ... because you believe in possibilities, you put yourself in position to achieve them.

5. Possibility Thinking Makes it Possible to Rise Above Average

One manufacturer asked a group of senior engineers to drastically reduce the weight of cars they were designing.... They couldn't get out of the rut of their average thinking.

     What was the auto maker's solution? They gave the problem to a group of less experienced engineers. The new group found ways [161] to reduce the weight.... Because they thought that solving the problem was possible, it was!  62

6. Positive Thinking Gives you Energy

A direct correlation exists between Positive Thinking and the level of a person's energy. ... You invest yourself in what you believe can succeed. When you embrace Possibility Thinking, you believe in what you're doing, and that gives you energy.

7. Positive Thinking Keeps you from Giving Up

Above all, positive thinkers believe they can succeed.  Denis Waitley, author of The Psychology of Winning, says, "The winners in life think constantly in terms of 'I can, I will and I am.'... If you believe you can do something, you have already won much of the battle.. 162

How to Feel the Energy of Positive Thinking      163

If you want Possibility Thinking to work for you, then begin by following these suggestions:

1. Stop Focusing on the Impossibilities.    ...if negativity is a really big problem for you and pessimistic things come out of your mouth before you've even thought them through, you may need to enlist the aid of a friend or family member to alert you every time you utter negative ideas. 165

     [Since Maxwell is a pastor and a leader in the Church Growth Movement, how does he deal with man's sin and rebellion or with God's wrath and judgment? Would such "negative thoughts" be banned?]  165 

2. Stay away from the "Experts"   If you feel you must take the advice of an expert, hover, then heed the words of John Andrew Holmes, who asserted, "Never tell a young person that t something cannot be done. God may have been waiting centuries for somebody ignorant enough of the impossible to do that thing."166

    [While God warns against new believers in positions of leadership, the CGM prefers the young, whose minds are not rooted in God's timeless Biblical truths. Change is better accomplished through postmoderns who have embraced the key notions of continual change and social evolution]

3. Look for Possibilities in Every Situation

I recently heard don Soderquist, former president of Wal-Mart, tell a wonderful story that illustrates how a person can find positive possibilities in any situation.. ...[166]

5. Question the Status Quo.  Growth means change. Change requires challenging the status quo. If you want greater possibilities, you can't settle for what you have now.

     When you become a possibility thinker, you will face many people who will want you to give up your dreams and embrace the status quo. ... Achievers refuse to accept the status quo.

6. Find Inspiration from Great Achievers.  You can learn a lot about possibility thinking by studying great achievers. I began this chapter telling you about George Lucas....  169

Chapter 1. Understand the value of Good Thinking  [3]

2. Good Thinking Increases Your Potential. In The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, I wrote about the Law of the Lid, which states, "Leadership ability determines a person's level of effectiveness." In other words, in any endeavor with people, your leadership is the lid....

     Your thinking is the lid for your potential. If you're an excellent thinker, then you have excellent potential and the words of Emerson ring true; "Beware when the great God lets loose a great thinker on the planet."11

     [Notice that his statement clashes with Biblical truth -- God's wisdom]

I had committed myself to being a pastor: one who does not turn his back on what he believes to be God's work. If I don't have the innate ability to come up with creative thoughts myself, I thought, then I'll mine the creative thoughts of others. I knew I could become a collector of thoughts more easily than I could become a creator of thoughts. After all, wasn't it the great inventor Thomas Edison who stated, "Originality is the art of concealing your source'?

       [But God's tells us to proclaim the Source of our wisdom and strength -- It's all from Him!]

Discover the Joy of Creative Thinking writer Rosabeth Moss Kanter says, "To stay ahead, you must have your next idea waiting in the wings." 99

Creative Thinkers Embrace Ambiguity.  "It is the dull man who is always sure, and the sure man who is always dull." 102

[Though John Maxwell committed himself to serving God, he never mentions the Holy Spirit, Jesus, repentance, conversion, the Bible or the cross ... He mentions faith 4 times, but not Biblical faith:

"...faith in people..." 124 [See John 2:24-25]

" ...call it what you like: the will to succeed, belief in yourself, confidence in your ability, faith. It's really true: people who believe they can't, don't. But if you believe you can, you can! That's the power ..." 170 [

"...stands between a man and what he wants from life is often merely the will to try it and the faith to believe that it is possible." A belief  the will to try it and the faith to believe that it is possible." 29

Back cover: endorsements 1 and 3 out of 6    - "Praise for Thinking for a Change"

1. "If you want to go places you've never been before--you have to think in ways you've never thought before. This book by Hohn Maxwell will teach you how to do that!"  Ken Blanchard, coauthor of the One Minute Manager  (1s5)


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