Positive thinking is very much in the mainstream today, but back in the 1950s, it was still in its infancy. Follow along for quotes from The Power of Positive Thinking.
Norman Vincent Peale is regarded by many as the father of positive thinking and his 1952 self-help book, The Power of Positive Thinking: A Practical Guide to Mastering the Problems of Everyday Living, has been read by millions and is still wildly popular more than half a century after its release.
The book uses anecdotes and case histories to demonstrate the power of positive thinking, as well as techniques and instruction on how to implement positive thinking in your life. Many of the techniques revolve around the reader performing affirmations, visualizations, and various other actions.
Peale claimed that his methods would provide the reader with higher satisfaction and quality of life. Although the book does have religious undertones, Peale’s message of confidence, faith, and optimism can be appreciated by all.
Let us take a brief look at some of the greatest quotes from the book, and attempt to interpret them from a secular perspective.
Popular quotes from The Power of Positive Thinking
“The way to happiness: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry. Live simply, expect little, give much. Scatter sunshine, forget self, think of others. Try this for a week and you will be surprised.”
We live in a world that makes it easy to fall prey to hate, fear and worry. We are more informed and knowledgeable about the world’s problems than ever before. Feeding your mind with negative news and information of events that are beyond your control will lead to negativity creeping into your thinking and subconscious.
We have to realize that most of the problems in the world are out of our control. All we can do is focus on our actions and thoughts, and live with love and compassion for ourselves and others. If we do this every day, we will inadvertently make the world a better place.
Spread love and joy to those around you. Be grateful for what you have, even if you have very little. Gratitude creates positivity and positivity leads to change.
“The trouble with most of us is that we would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism”
More and more of us seek the approval of those around us. We just want to hear what we want to hear, not what we need to. However, the only way to change is to acknowledge our shortcomings. You can only do this by accepting constructive criticism from yourself and others. Criticism can be positive if given with kindness and with good intentions, and destructive if driven by malicious means.
Quotes on Success
“Formulate and stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding. Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade. Your mind will seek to develop the picture… Do not build up obstacles in your imagination.”
“When you expect the best, you release a magnetic force in your mind which by a law of attraction tends to bring the best to you.”
The only way to achieve something is to believe that you can do it. Although a mental picture of yourself succeeding may not materialize exactly as you see it, it will greatly improve your chances of success. A positive mental picture will allow you to put forth the effort and determination necessary to achieve victory.
Negative thinkers focus on obstacles and often catastrophize them. The fear of the perceived obstacle often surpasses the rewards of potential success. In reality, many of these obstacles will never actually occur, and if they do, negative thoughts will be a far bigger obstacle than the obstacle itself.
There are always reasons not to try, but overcoming challenges is what life is all about, and it is where positive thinkers thrive.
More Quotes From the ‘Power of Positive Thinking’
“Stand up to an obstacle. Just stand up to it, that’s all, and don’t give way under it, and it will finally break. You will break it. Something has to break, and it won’t be you, it will be the obstacle.”
There is always a solution. Maybe you haven’t thought of it yet, maybe you are approaching the problem from the wrong angle, but an answer exists. If there is no solution to your problem, do you have any choice but to stand up to it?
There is no way to overcome an obstacle unless you have self-belief and positivity. Your mind is designed for overcoming challenges, so have faith, and tackle the obstacle head-on.
A Great Tip and Quote
“Let nothing trouble you let nothing worry you everything passes away except God. God alone is sufficient”
“YOU DO NOT need to be a victim of worry. Reduced to its simplest form, what is worry? It is simply an unhealthy and destructive mental habit.”
This is one of our favorite quotes from The Power of Positive Thinking. Ask yourself, “Am I really going to care about this in 5 years?”, the answer is probably no. Life is short and everything passes by in the blink of an eye. Although your problem may be significant today, it will eventually pass. Try not to think of your current position as permanent, it is just another step on your journey.
Long after we’re gone, the world will still go on, our problems will not matter, so worrying ourselves sick isn’t helping anyone. Worrying and stress are not useful or productive, positivity and action are.
Situations don’t create worry, our thoughts about the situation do. We create our worry through a habit of negative and fearful thoughts. Through habitual positive thinking. we can stop worrying, and instead foster determination and willpower.
“Our happiness depends on the habit of mind we cultivate.”
Happiness is all about how we perceive our reality, not the reality itself. If our thought changes the way that we see the world, is our subjective reality and our happiness not formed in the mind? A habit of positive thinking leads to a positive attitude. A positive attitude leads to a positive outlook. A positive outlook leads to a positive interpretation of reality and internal happiness.
Overall, The Power of Positive Thinking is a revolutionary book in the world of positive psychology, especially considering the era in which it was written. The religious tone of Peale’s writing shouldn’t dissuade the reader from extracting the valuable knowledge that Peale imparts.
This book has stood the test of time and changed the course of popular psychology. Everyone who reads it will come away with a firmer commitment and determination towards practicing positive thinking.