What’s in it for me? Learn to think your way to success.
How Successful People Think summary – The world’s most successful people have one thing in common: they aren’t afraid to think outside the box and carve out their own path.
But the journey along that road can be lonely. After all, we’re a sociable species by nature. We like fitting in, and the price of social acceptance is falling in with accepted ideas. Going against the grain, questioning common notions and striking out on your own isn’t likely to win you many friends.
Yet just think where we’d be if everyone had always kept their brilliant ideas to themselves! To claim, as Copernicus did, that the earth wasn’t at the center of the universe must have struck his contemporaries as some form of madness. But he was right, and we’re forever in his debt for having stuck to his guns.
That goes to show just how important creative thinking and tenacity are when it comes to success. But, as John C. Maxwell shows, you don’t have to be an Einstein or Galileo to have great ideas. In fact, everyone can learn to think creatively – all it takes is knowing the right techniques and a bit of practice!
In this article, you’ll discover
- why learning to be empathetic will help you achieve success;
- what Alfred Nobel did after reading his own obituary; and
- what Paul McCartney and John Lennon can teach you about collaboration.
Big picture thinkers are constantly learning and know how to empathize with others.
General Electric CEO Jack Welch regularly tells his employees that existing relationships with clients are more important than individual sales. Why? Because he knows that, when it comes to being successful in the long run, it’s sometimes necessary to leave the nitty-gritty behind for a moment and consider the bigger picture.
But how can you start cultivating big picture thinking? By making sure you’re always learning.
Big picture thinkers are always looking for opportunities to learn. They’re constantly on the go, visiting new places, meeting new people and honing new skills.
The author has a handy technique that puts him in the right mindset to do that: he starts his day by looking at his schedule and asking himself what learning opportunities are likely to present themselves.
Once he’s noted down the activities that are most likely to teach him something, he mentally primes himself to be on high alert. That means he’s much more likely to be receptive to what’s going on around him.
So when he once had dinner with National Football League (NFL) coach Dave Wannstedt, for instance, he was well prepared. He used the time to ask him all sorts of questions about teamwork and left the restaurant brimming with new insights.
That’s something you can take up too: spend a couple of minutes each morning looking over your itinerary and ask yourself what opportunities to learn new things you’re likely to encounter.
Making an effort to become a big picture thinker is important because it gives you a window into how other people see the world. In other words, it makes you more empathetic.
And that’s good for your relationships: whether it’s your clients, husband or wife, children or friends, empathizing with those around you will help you understand what they want and need.
Seeing the big picture ultimately helps you think beyond your own narrow interests and take those of others into account.
Set and achieve clear targets by thinking realistically and making sure you do your homework.
What is a reality? Don’t worry, this isn’t a philosophy lecture! In fact, there’s a pretty simple answer: reality is the difference between your desires and how the world actually is.
If you want to succeed in the real world, you have to leave your daydreams behind and start thinking realistically.
That means setting targets and drawing up a game plan that’ll put you in a………………