book review thinking for a change john c maxwell

Book Review: Thinking for a Change by John C Maxwell

“If you value popularity over good thinking then you will severely limit your potential. If you want to become a good thinker, then start preparing yourself for the possibility of becoming unpopular.” ~~ John C Maxwell (Book: Thinking for a Change)

To think or not to think & what to think — it’s a fascinating subject. There are lots of people, who don’t seem to invest time in thinking or are into following the easy way — depending on someone else’s thinking.

Not thinking once in a while, I think, is okay. But not thinking almost always and looking up to someone else to provide the solution, is a strange way of spending life.

If you’re running your business, small or big, then not thinking or depending too much on others advice, is a dangerous way of doing business — a way that would sooner or later get you in trouble or out of business.

Let’s Find Out What the Author Thoughts are on this subject:

Lesson 1: Learn to Think:

Even if you’ve spent your life, not engaging in critical thinking, you’d still start and make it a habit. It’s a process and if you’re ready to invest time, patience and effort, you’d learn to be a better thinker.

To start thinking more productively, you need a few things:

1: A place where you can think uninterruptedly. It should feel right to you.

2: Setting uninterrupted time for thinking. You should keep some time aside every day just to think. Turn it into a routine; don’t skip or procrastinate to follow the routine.   

3: Keep a notebook to capture your thoughts. Write them even if you later think they are not good enough.

4: Then find out how best you’d expand the thoughts or ideas you’ve captured. Find out how much time you need to expand that idea.

Don’t rush the expansion of an idea into a whole. If you want a change of place, then find a new place for this activity.

5: Learn to think realistically & strategically and not just optimistically as actions always have consequences. Thinking positively doesn’t solve problems or prepare you to face them. You’d be better prepared for bad if you’d engaged in thinking about it realistically.

“If you wait until you feel like doing something, you will likely never accomplish it. The same is true for thinking. You cannot wait until you feel like thinking to do it.” ~~ John C Maxwell (Book: Thinking for a Change)

 

Lesson 2: Stay Away from the Expert Advice:

It seems the experts are dime a dozen online. Whoever starts a blog these days, after a couple of months or 6 at most, start calling themselves – the expert.

It’s encouraged by other so-called experts, to establish so-called authority to fool the newcomers.

Instead of wasting your time listening to the experts and trying the exact same tricks they say they tried, to run your business, do things your way.

Popular (or expert) advice is not always right or even well-suited to your business.

Always question what you’re reading, why that person is saying so-so and if that suggestion would be right for your business or could you come up with a better solution.

Another danger of following popular expert advice is, you wait for them to tell you how you should run your business and after a while you stop thinking for yourself. Non-thinking individuals don’t go far in business or life.

Also, question yourself ‘why you’re following experts’ and your own your way of thinking. Just because your way of doing things doesn’t match the popular thinking of the experts that doesn’t mean it’s wrong or won’t work for you.

“Stay away from experts. So-called experts do more to shoot down people’s dreams than just about anybody else. If you want to achieve something, give yourself permission to believe it is possible – no matter what experts might say.” ~~ John C Maxwell (Book: Thinking for a Change)

 

Lesson 3: In the Pursuit to Master Your Skill or Talent, You’d have to give up Few Things or a Lot:

Multitasking isn’t a virtue, nor is it good for you, no matter how much someone tries to convince you otherwise.

If you want to become successful, then instead of focusing on developing many skills, choose one and work on it. And later work on the other one, if you so desire.

In your quest to master your chosen skill or talent you’d have to put all your focus into improving it. And you might have to give up working on other skills or talents you have and love.

Learn to focus and develop the strengths that could bring you the most reward in life.

“Being willing to give up some of the things you love in order to focus on what has the greatest impact isn’t an easy lesson to learn.” ~~ John C Maxwell (Book: Thinking for a Change)

 

Lesson 4: Be with the Right People:

You need a place, time and the right environment to engage in the process of serious productive thinking. But, you also need to surround yourself with the right people.

Be around people, who welcome new ideas, are open-minded, not scared to ask thoughtful questions, nor stops anyone from questioning, accepts change and are not egoistic.

Such people, are also good listeners and are much more tolerant of other people’s views, even if they don’t agree with them.

Also, when you need an advice, ask someone you know is honest. But the person also cares about you, so you’d get the feedback without the bite. 😉

“Make a goal to find people who will add value to you in areas that are important to you. And make yourself available to do the same for others.” ~~ John C Maxwell (Book: Thinking for a Change)

 

Review:

I found the book thought-provoking and well-worth the time I spent reading it.

I liked the story in chapter on “Skill 5: Release the Power of Strategic Thinking” most useful and even inspirational. It prompts you to analyze your life right that moment.

Maybe because I’m a writer and sometimes (due to my own bad planning) I scream ‘I need more hours in the day!’

The author tells you about a woman living in the 60s, who had 10 children, a husband earning not enough & spending more and all kinds of restrictions and obstacles.

How she found a clever way to earn money in times when women stayed at home and raised children, didn’t work outside and had so much to do.

Instead of thinking about her situation as hopeless, she found a way to make money or rather win products. She took part in jingle writing contests and won stuff, while at the same time taking care of the household and her family.

That’s one excellent example of strategic thinking.

“If you want to break out of your own box, get into somebody else’s. Read broadly.” ~~ John C Maxwell (Book: Thinking for a Change)

Hit or Miss: Hit.

Ratings: 4stars/5

Buy:  Amazon   |    iTunes

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Priyanka Sharma

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