Is “The Power of Positive Thinking in Business” really a business book? Reading it last week I thought: hmm, not exactly. Scott Ventrella’s book is more a straight-forward ‘synopses’ of Norman Vincent Peale’s book “The Power of Thinking Positive”; adding the words "in business" doesn’t really make it ‘special’.
Is it a waste of time to read? No, not at all. I read Norman Peale’s book (voluminous book - 320 pages) 15 – 20 years ago and think that Ventrella (who wrote his book in cooperation with the Peale Centre) has managed to highlight and ‘contract’ the essence of the whole concept of Positive Thinking, worthwhile in any situation or any circumstances; not just in business.
The reader is encouraged to take the “Positive Thinking Inventory’ test (50 statements you have to rate 1 to 5 in relation to how many times you engage in that specific thought, feeling or action) and work out which of the ten traits of Positive Thinking score high and which score low.
The ten traits are: Patience, Calmness (Holding Power), Belief, Integrity, Focus (Centering Power), Optimism, Enthusiasm (Uplifting Power) Courage, Confidence, Determination (Driving Power).
Not really a surprise to me, but my lowest score was Patience. I am determent, I have optimism and focus, but patience? Not my strongest point I’m afraid, especially when ‘waiting’ for a reply, an answer, a decision from someone else.
After the test the books describes all traits and ways to ‘build up’ on them. Two of the tips in the Patience category will stick with me:
- Become aware that others operate at a different speed; it’s not their unwillingness to reply – report back, but there might be other factors involved I’m not aware of at that moment. (That’s a tip I can use, until of course I think it’s taking a ridiculous long time now!)
- Thoughtfully consider the consequences of acting now versus waiting (oh, how I wish I had done so in various situations ;-))
These two ‘handles’ will be on my mind now and as I’ve learned before: becoming aware of something is half the battle won.
The book ends with a worksheet to make it easier to put everything read, learned and acknowledged from the book in to practice. A good idea worth following (and I do have a particular project in mind I’m sure this worksheets comes in handy).