David J. Schwartz: The Magic Of Thinking Big (1959/1997) 📙


Meine Highlights

1 – Believe You Can Succeed and You Will

„All of us, more than we recognize, are products of the thinking around us. And much of this thinking is little, not big. All around you is an environment that is trying to tug you, trying to pull you down Second Class Street.“ (S. 10)

„But, in truth, success doesn‘t demand a price. Every step forward pays a dividend.“ (S. 11)

  • Es gibt keinen Haken. Nur Upper Limit Challenges.

„And this environment also tells us there is too much competition for the top spots in life. But is there? […] There are countless vacancies waiting there for people like you who dare to think big.“ (S. 11)

„Every human being wants success. Everybody wants the best this life can deliver.“ (S. 19)

believe ≠ wishful thinking (S. 20)

„I‘m going to the top“-attitude (S. 20)

  • An den Allerbesten orientieren und einer von ihnen werden.
  • von ihnen lernen und imitieren

„The how-to-do-it always comes to the person who believes he can do it.“ (S. 21)

„And believing you can succeed makes others place confidence in you.“ (S. 22)

„Believe in great results is the driving force, the power behind all great books, plays, scientific discoveries.“ (S. 23)

„When the mind disbelieves or doubts, the mind attracts „reasons“ to support the disbelieve.“ (S. 24)

„It is well to respect the leader. Learn from him. Observe him. Study him. But don‘t worship him. Believe you can surpass. Believe you can go beyond.“ (S. 24)

„He believes he is worth much, and he receives much.“ (S. 25)

„[…] all say: „Here is a professional. He is an important person.““ (S. 25)

  • Das Große in allem ausstrahlen, dann wird es auch von anderen empfangen.

„[…] making your mind work FOR you instead of letting it work against you.“ (S. 25f)

„All signs point to a record demand for top-level people in every field […]. One of them is you.” (S 31)

How to develop the power of belief (S. 32)

  1. Think success, don’t think failure.
  2. Remind yourself regularly that you are better than you think you are.
    • Successful people are just ordinary folks who have developed belief in themselves and what they do.”
  3. Believe Big.
    • „Think big goals and win big success.“
    • „Big ideas and big plans are often easier — certainly no more difficult — than small ideas and small plans.” (S. 32f)

The acid test: Get results. (S. 33)

  • Der Lackmus-Test von allem sind die Ergebnisse, die ich erreiche. Was wirklich zählt, ist das, was sichtbar wird — nicht, was ich denke.

2 – Cure Yourself of Excusitis, The Failure Disease

„You will find that the more successful the individual, the less inclined he is to make excuses.” (S. 37)

We overestimate the other fellow’s brain power. Because of these errors many people sell themselves short.” (S. 45)

  • Die anderen sind auch nicht gescheiter als ich. Am Hirn liegt es nicht.

„What really matters is not how much intelligence you have but how you use what you do have.” (S. 45)

  • „Knowledge is power – when you use it constructively.” (S. 50)

3 – Build Confidence and Destroy Fear

„Yes, fear is real. And we must recognize it exists before we can conquer it.” (S. 63)

„Fear is success enemy No. 1. Fear stops people from capitalizing on opportunity.” (S. 63)

„All confidence is acquired, developed. No one is born with confidence.” (S. 64)

„Action cures fear. Indecision, postponement, on the other hand, fertilize fear.” (S. 65)

„Don’t build mental monsters. Refuse to withdraw the unpleasant thoughts from your memory bank. When you remember situations of any kind, concentrate on the good part of the experience; forget the bad.  Bury it. […] Your mind wants you to forget the unpleasant.” (S. 75)

Fear of other people is a big fear. […] You can conquer fear of people if you will learn to put them in „proper perspective”.” (S. 76)

I discovered people are alike in many, many more ways than they are different. I discovered the other fellow is pretty much like me. He likes good food, he misses his family and friends, he wants to get ahead, he has problems, he likes to relax. So, if the other fellow is basically like me, there’s no point of being afraid of him.” (S. 77)

„The other fellow is important. […] You are important, too. […] We’re just two important people sitting down to discuss something of mutual interest and benefit.” (S. 77)

Do what’s right and keep your confidence. That’s thinking yourself to success.” (S. 83)

  • vgl. JBP: Rule 8 Tell the truth – or, at least, don’t lie.

„To think confidently, act confidently.” (S. 74)

4 – How to Think Big

„Most of them seem to define the word success as synonymous with security.“ (S. 93)

„The thing I can‘t understand is why should young people these days be so ultra-conservative, so narrow in their view of the future?“ (S. 93)

„The tendeny for so many people to think small means there is much less competition than you think […]“ (S. 93)

  • Weil es sich so viele einfach nicht erlauben!

„How big we think determines the size of our accomplishments.“ (S. 93)

„Probably the greatest human weakness is self-deprecation – that is, selling oneself short.“ (S. 93)

Think as big as you really are. Never, never, never sell yourself short.“ (S. 95)

  • Bei „sell yourself short“ geht es NICHT in erster Linie um Geld. Da geht es nicht darum, dass man nicht das verdient, was einem zusteht. Das ist viel zu eindimensional gedacht.
  • Da geht es um „not living up to his potential“ (vgl. JBP).
  • Da geht es um all die vielfältigen Weisen, wie wir uns selber im Weg stehen.

„To think big we must use words and images which produce big, positive mental images.“ (S. 96)

  • Beispiel: „Competition is strong. There’s no denying that, but no one ever has all the advantages.“ (S. 97)

„Use positive language to encourage others. Compliment people personally at every opportunity. Everyone you know craves praise. Have a special good word for your wife or husband every day.“ (S. 99)

„Praise, sincerely administered, is a success tool. Use it!“ (S. 99)

„Use positive words to outline plans to others. […] Build castles, don’t dig graves!“ (S. 99)

Vgl. Real Estate: See what can be, not what is. (S. 99)

  • „Stretch your vision.” (S. 117)

Paint a picture with words. „Visualisation adds value to everything.” (S. 101)

Was einen guten Speaker ausmacht: „Knowledge of what he’s going to talk about and an intense desire to tell it to other people.” (S. 110)

  • „Yet all these successful public speakers have von thing in common. They have something to say and they feel a burning desire for other people to hear it.” (S. 110)

A big thinker competes with the best. (S. 116)

„The next promotion depends mostly on how you think toward your present job.” (S. 117f)

5 – How to Think and Dream Creatively

„Your mind will create a way if you let it.” (S. 123)

„ „Average” people have always resented progress.” (S. 125)

„There are many ways in which a good job can be done — as many ways, in fact, as there are men to whom the task is given. In truth, there is no one best way to do anything.” (S. 126)

That’s a interesting idea. Tell me more about it!” (S. 127)

„The successful person doesn’t ask, „Can I do it better?” He knows he can. So he phrases the question: How can I do it better?” (S. 128f)

„The main thing I attribute my success to is my self-styled ,weekly improvement program’.” (S. 129)

  • „All during the week I make notes and jot down ideas as to how I can improve my business. Then, every Monday evening, I set aside four hours to review the ideas I’ve jotted down and figure out how to put the solid ones to use in the business.” (S. 129f)
  • „I don’t simply wish more customers would shop in my store. Instead I ask myself ‚What can I do to attract more customers?‘” (S. 130)
  • „Just by conscientiously asking myself, ‚How can I do a better job?‘ I find the answers.” (S. 130)
  • „It’s not so much what you know when you start that matters. It’s what you learn and put to use after you open your doors that counts most.” (S. 131)
  • „Top success is reserved for the I-can-do-it-better kind of person.” (S. 131)

„Capacity is a state of mind. How much we can do depends on how much we think we can do.” (S. 132)

„The bigger the person, the more apt he is to encourage you to talk; the smaller the person, the more apt he is to preach to you. Big people monopolize the listening. Small people monopolize the talking.” (S. 136)

We learn nothing from telling. […] Encourage others to talk.” (S. 138)

„Test your own views in the form of questions. Let other people help you smooth and polish your ideas.” (S. 139)

„Concentrate on what the other person says. Listening is more than just keeping your own mouth shut. Listening means letting what’s said penetrate your mind. […] Concentrate on what the other person says. [Then] Evaluate it.” (S. 139)

Ideas are fruits of your thinking. But they’ve got to be harnessed and put to work to have value.” (S. 143)

Resolve to put your ideas in saleable form.” (S. 145)

  • Resolve = Sich entschließen

6 – You Are What You Think You Are

„Others see in us what we see in ourselves. We receive the kind of treatment we think we deserve.” (S. 147f)

„To get the respect of others, you must first think you deserve respect. And the more respect you have for yourself, the more respect others will have for you. […] Self-respect shows through everything we do.” (S. 148)

Dress right. You can’t afford not to!” (S. 149)

  • „Dress right. It always pays.” (S. 149)
  • „Look sharp because it will help you think sharp.” (S. 150)
  • „How you look on the outside affects how you think and feel on the inside.” (S. 150)
  • „In theory, it’s pleasant to hear that people should look at a man’s intellect, not his clothes.” (S. 151)
  • „Respect your appearance.” (S. 152)
  • Pay twice as much and buy half as many.” (S. 152)
  • „You owe it to others — but, more important, you owe it to yourself — to look your best.” (S. 153)
  • „I’ve heard the argument many times „but I can’t afford to go first class.” The simplest answer is: you cannot afford to go any other way. […] It’s better, for example, to have one really good pair of shoes than to have three pairs of second-class shoes.” (S. 189)

„Each person working with us is important, else he wouldn’t be on the payroll.” (S. 155)

„We’ve all noticed how children quickly pick up the attitudes, habits, fears, and preferences of their parents. […] And so do adults! People continue to imitate others throughout life.” (S. 159)

7 – Manage Your Environment: Go First Class

„The body is what the body is fed. By the same token, the mind is what the mind is fed. […] Mind food is your environment — all the countless things which influence your conscious and subconscious thought.” (S. 169)

„The size of your thinking, your goals, your attitudes, your very personality is formed by your environment.” (S. 170)

„Companionship with people with big ideas raises the level of our thinking; close contact with ambitious people gives us ambition.” (S. 171)

„Big men do not laugh at big ideas.” (S. 174)

„Remember: people who tell you it cannot be done almost always are unsuccessful people, are strictly average or mediocre at best in terms of accomplishment.” (S. 175)

„Be extra, extra cautious about this: don’t let negative thinking people — „negators” — destroy your plan to think yourself to success.” (S. 175)

„Negators are everywhere. Some negators […] are well-meaning folks. But others are jealous people who, not moving ahead themselves, want you to stumble too. They feel inadequate themselves, so they want to make a mediocre person out of you. Be extra careful. Study negators. Don’t let them destroy your plans for success.” (S. 177)

„For often the remarks made in your direction aren’t so personal as you might at first think. They are merely a projection of the speaker’s own feeling of failure and discouragement.” (S. 179)

„Make a rule to seek advice from people who know. […] Go First Class when you have a question.” (S. 180)

8 – Make Your Attitudes Your Allies

The enthusiastic salesman need never worry about unenthusiastic buyers. The enthusiastic teacher need never worry about disinterested students.” (S. 195)

„To get enthusiastic, learn more about the thing you are not enthusiastic about.” (S. 196)

  • „Use the dig-into-it-deeper technique to develop enthusiasm toward other people.” (S. 197)
  • Funktioniert auch bei BWL!
  • Und: Gib deinen Kund:innen diese Informationen über dich, damit sie enthusiastic about you werden können.
  • „Keep digging and you’re certain to find some common interests. Keep digging and you’ll eventually discover a fascinating person.” (S. 198) — vgl. Es gibt keine uninteressanten Menschen.

„People go along with the fellow who believes what he says.” (S. 200)

„And when you put life in your talk, you automatically put more life in you.” (S. 200)

„Transmit good news to your family. Tell them the good that happened today. […] Bring home some sunlight every day.” (S. 201)

„Make it a habit always to speak favorably about the weather regardless of what the weather actually is.” (S. 201)

„Transmit good news to the people you work with. Give them encouragement, compliment them at every opportunity. […] Encourage people and win their support.” (S. 202)

„Each human […], young or old, has this desire: He wants to feel important.” (S. 203)

  • Jeder Mensch will „gesehen” werden. Vgl. St. Martin

„The desire to be important is man’s strongest, most compelling non-biological hunger. Successful advertisers know people crave prestige, distinction, recognition.” (S. 203)

  • Everybody wants to be the man on the top.

„On the philosophical side, our religions, our laws, our entire culture is based on the belief of the importance of the individual.” (S. 204)

„First, people do more for you when you make them feel important.” (S. 205)

  • vgl. Special Agent Günter

„Make someone feel important and he cares about you. And when he cares about you, he does more for you. Customers will buy more from you, employees will work harder for you.” (S. 206)

„It pays to make „big” people feel even bigger.” (S. 206)

„When you help others feel important, you help yourself feel important too.” (S. 207)

„I had sincerely complimented her and called her by name.” (S. 207)

  • Es ist oft sehr einfach…

„Practice appreciation. […] Never, never let anyone feel he is taken for granted.” (S. 208)

„Practice appreciation with honest, personalized compliments. People thrive on compliments.” (S. 208)

„Compliment people on little things: their appearance, the way they do their routine work, their ideas, their loyal efforts.” (S. 208)

„Practice calling people by their names.” (S. 209)

„Ask yourself every day, „What can I do today to make my wife and family happy?” (S. 211)

Do something special for your family often. It doesn’t have to be something expensive. It’s thoughtfulness that counts. Anything which shows that you put your family’s interests first will do the trick. […] Give them planned attention.” (S. 211)

And the seed of money is service. That’s why „put-service-first” is an attitude which creates wealth. Put service first and money takes care of itself – always.” (S. 214f)

„You don’t get a raise on the promise of better performance; you get a raise only by demonstrating better performance.” (S. 216f)

„The salesman who gives full service to an account need harbor not fears he’ll lose the account.” (S. 218)

„Always give people more than they expect to get.” (S. 218)

9 – Think Right Toward People

„Success depends on the support of other people.” (S. 220)

„But today, remember, a person either supports you willingly or he doesn’t support you at all.” (S. 221)

„Think right toward people and they will like and support you.” (S. 221)

In at least nine cases out of ten, the „likeability” factor is the first thing mentioned.” (S. 222)

„A person is not pulled up to a higher level job. Rather, he is lifted up. […] We are lifted to higher levels by those who know us as likeable, personable individuals. Every friend you make lifts you just one notch higher. And, being likeable makes you lighter to lift.” (S.  222)

„Say pleasant things to strangers.” (S. 227)

„We must remember that most people do not understand the concepts of thinking right toward people.” (S. 231)

„Customers should be treated like they are guests in my home.” (Sol Polk, S. 234)

„The person who does the most talking and the person who is the most successful are rarely the same person.” (S. 236)

„The real test for thinking right toward people comes when things don’t go exactly the way we want. […] how you think when you lose determines how long it will be until you win.” (S. 238)

10 – Get the Action Habit

„There is a shortage of top-flight, expertly qualified persons to fill key positions. There really is, as the saying goes, plenty of room at the top.” (S. 241)

„There is one success ingredient often missing. That is the ability to get things done, to get results.” (S. 241)

„Excellent ideas are not enough.” (S. 241)

„Ideas in themselves are not enough. That idea for getting more business, for simplifying work procedures, is of value only when it is acted upon.” (S. 250)

„Got a good idea? Then do something about it.” (S. 251)

„To fight fear, act.” (S. 251)

„Action cures fear.” (S. 251)

„The only way to start is to start. Don’t deliberate. Don’t postpone getting started.” (S. 254)

Now is the magic word of success.” (S. 256)

„Business executives want comment. The fellow who hides his light under a bushel hurts himself. Get the „speak up” habit. Each time you speak up, you strengthen yourself. Come forward with your constructive ideas.” (S. 259)

„I’m in condition right now to begin. I can’t gain a thing by putting it off.” (S. 260)

„The person with initiative has a standing invitation to join the high-income brackets in every business and profession.” (S. 260f)

„The volunteer stands out. He receives special attention.” (S. 263)

„People place confidence in the fellow who acts. They naturally assume he knows what he is doing.” (S. 263)

11 – How to turn Defeat Into Victory

„But Mr. Success reacted differently when he got knocked down. He bounced up, learned a lesson, forgot the beating, and moved upward.” (The Magic Of Thinking Big, S. 266)

„It is not possible to win high-level success without meeting opposition, hardship and setback.” (S. 268)

„Salvage something from every setback.” (S. 269)

„Defeat is only a state of mind, and nothing more.” (The Magic Of Thinking Big, S. 273)

„So I just regarded those first bad investments as part of the cost of my education.” (S. 273)

„Be constructively self-critical. […] Be like the real professionals. They seek out their faults and weaknesses, then correct them. That’s what makes them professionals.” (The Magic Of Thinking Big, S. 275)

  • Vgl. Phil Collins, der sich im Hotelzimmer immer die Aufnahme des Konzerts vom Vorabend angehört hat, um Fehler zu finden und korrigieren zu können. Von nichts kommt nichts.

„Persisting in one way is not a guarantee of victory. But persistence blended with experimentation does guarantee success.” (S. 278)

„Many ambitious people go through life with admirable persistence and show of ambition, but they fail to succeed because they don’t experiment with new approaches. Stay with your goal. Don’t waver an inch from it. But don’t beat your head against a wall. If you aren’t getting results, try a new approach.” (S. 279)

„When you hit a snag, don’t throw up the whole project. Instead, back off, get mentally refreshed.” (S. 281)

12 – Use Goals to Help You Grow

„Without goals individuals just wander through life. […] Goals are as essential to success as air is to life.” (S. 283)

„The modern corporation does not leave its future to chance. Should you?” (S. 284)

„The individual that fails to set long-range goals will most certainly be just another person lost in life’s shuffle. Without goals we cannot grow.“ (S. 284)

„Desire, when harnessed, is power. […] Success requires heart and soul effort and you can only put your heart and soul into something you really desire.“ (S. 289f)

„To accomplish something, we must plan to accomplish something.“ (S. 294)

„When we detour, we don’t have to change our goals. We just travel a different route.“ (S. 302)

„But the biggest and most rewarding kind of investment is self-investment, purchasing things which build mental power and proficiency.“ (S. 303)

Profit comes from only one source: investment.“ (S. 303)

„We must invest to achieve our goals.“ (S. 303)

„Real education, the kind worth investing in, is that which develops and cultivates your mind.“ (S. 304)

13 – How to Think Like A Leader

„Success and the ability to lead others […] go hand-in-hand.“ (S. 307)

„To get others to do what you want them to do you must see things through their eyes.“ (S. 310)

„What would I think of my superior if he were dressed like me?“ (S. 313)

„Treat everyone with dignity. Remind yourself that the primary purpose in life is to enjoy it. As a general rule, the more interest you show in a person, the more he will produce for you.“ (S. 320)

„A little modesty goes a long way.“ (S. 320)

„Praise your subordinates personally at every opportunity. Praise them for their cooperation.“ (S. 320)

„Leaders, real leaders, are in short supply.“ (S. 321)

„Believe in — and push for — progress; and you’ll be a leader.“ (S. 323)

„Remember this: When you take over leadership of a group, the persons in that group immediately begin to adjust themselves to the standards you set.“ (S. 326)

„Leaders spend considerable time alone, alone with nothing but their own thinking apparatus. […] Moses frequently was alone, often for long periods of time. So was Jesus, Buddha, Confucius, Mohammed, Gandhi – every outstanding religious leader in history spent much time in solitude away from the distractions of life.“ (S. 329)

„The point is this: the successful person in any field takes time out to confer with himself or herself. Leaders use solitude to put the pieces of a problem together, to work out solutions, to plan, and, in one phrase, to do their super-thinking.“ (S. 330)

Managed solitude (S. 331)

„Resolve now to set aside some time each day (at least thirty minutes) to be completely by yourself.“ (S. 332)

„You can use this time to do two types of thinking: directed and undirected. […] To do undirected thinking, just let your mind select what it wishes to think about. […] Undirected thinking is very helpful in doing self-evaluation.“ (S. 332)

Remember, the main job of the leader is thinking.“ (S. 333)

When you hit some rough spots there is danger that your thinking will shrink in size. And when it does, you lose.“ (S. 334)

„Put other people in proper perspective. The other person is just another human being, so why be afraid of him?“ (S. 335)

The best is not unattainable. There is room for doing everything better. Nothing in this world is being done as well as it could be. And when you think, „I can do better,“ ways to do better will appear.“ (S. 337)

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