Day 20: Even the best of us sometimes lose it!

There is an engaging, encouraging story about Dr Norman Vincent Peale.

Norman was the author of “The Power of Positive Thinking”, published in 1952.

“The Power of Positive Thinking” has sold more than 20 million copies. It has been printed in 41 different languages.

Yet it came within a whisker of never getting published!

It was the fourth book by Norman. In all, he authored 46 inspirational books. Dr Peale coined the phrase “positive thinking”. His books have influenced millions of people.

For 54 years, Norm’s weekly radio program, “The Art of living”, aired. His sermons were said to have been mailed to over 750,000 people every month, year in and year out.

Here is a person who really had a positive outlook.

Yet when it came to publishing “The Power of Positive Thinking” the good doctor stumbled. He dropped the ball. When Norman approached publishers with his manuscript, he was consistently turned down. He was told that the book was corny, too simple. It just wouldn’t sell.

Now you would imagine the world’s premier positive thinker would take all that in his stride. Not Norman. Not this time.

After all the rejections, he lost heart. He threw his manuscript in the waste paper basket with instructions to his wife, Ruth, it was to stay there.

He convinced himself the book was a dud. He gave up on having it published. Norman’s book did get published but that’s another story.

What we do know is that even the best positive thinkers get discouraged. We all lose our way now and then.

That’s just life.

The purpose of positive thinking is not to keep you on maximum level of optimism and enthusiasm 24/7. Its purpose is to keep you on an even keel. It helps you stay in the game. How do I know that?

I was fortunate enough to once talk to Norman himself about this very subject. When I asked him the purpose of positive thinking, that was the answer he gave me.

Everyone gets discouraged. Expect it, accept it and get on with it.

Here’s what he had to say about being beaten by circumstances:

“Any fact facing us is not as important as our attitude toward it, for that determines our success or failure. The way you think about a fact may defeat you before you ever do anything about it. You are overcome by the fact because you think you are.”

When you do get discouraged, remember you’re in good company. Cut yourself some slack. Chill out!

© 2019 well imagine that pty/ltd

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