Review and Summary: Mind Shift

Mind Shift Book Cover

You are what you think.

That is the main idea Erwin McManus explores in book Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One. He talks about how our minds determine our life and how we can improve them. He insists that within each of us, our mind sets shape who we become. It’s our choice how we adjust our thinking. Thus, he suggests twelve major mind shifts to improve our quality of life. While most of the advices in this book may seem familiar and mainstream, McManus presents them in a quotable fresh way with new insights.

At the first pages, I got the impressions that this book would be another cliché self-help read—which is not suit with my book preferences. However, as I turned the pages, I found McManus’s personal anecdotes and career experiences engaging. He mixes these with practical tips authentically and some of the quotes he shares resonated with me.

If you’re expecting a scientific exploration of how the mind functions, this book may not fulfill that need. But if you’re in a mood for a light motivational read, McManus offers a great option in Mind Shift.

Summary

Shift Your Mindset

Have you ever heard the ancient saying, “You are what you think”? Well, it’s like having a personal GPS to direct your life. If you shift the way you think, you’ll shift the course of your life.

It’s About People

The evolution of our appreciation towards value:

  • When we are children, stuff seems to be everything.
  • As we grow up, we start valuing experiences more. First crushes, first moments of independence – they all become the highlights. Those experiences shape our identity and self-worth.
  • Then, we realize that while nice things and great experiences are cool, they’re not the heart of life. The real life happens when we focus on people. Putting people as priority is the mark of maturity.

Shifting your mindset to prioritize others over yourself can change everything.

You Don’t Need an Audience

Fake it till you make it.

  • The problem with this principle is pretending to be someone you’re not work temporarily and not sustainable in the long run. You probably look good on the outside, but inside, you’re struggling. That is draining and can be harmful.
  • This applies whether you’re chasing fame from the masses or seeking validation from a few. If your self-worth depends on others’ opinions, you’ll never truly know yourself.

Don’t get caught up in the chase for fame, which drains your energy. Focus on the long game because:

  • Seeking an audience can distract you from your goals.
  • While fame might bring admiration, the journey there can be lonely.
  • If you rely on applause to feel great, you won’t make it through the tough times.
  • Do it for yourself, and the audience will follow.

You Can’t Take Everyone with You

  • If you want your closest friends to stick around for the long haul, there are two options: Either everyone stays the same, or everyone grows together.
  • Keep space for those who want to journey with you into the future. But don’t hold yourself back for those who prefer you just the way you are.
  • Not everyone can join you on your life path. Surround yourself with friends who are dedicated to personal growth and who push you to be your best self.

They Won’t Get It Until You Do It

Forget changing history—how about changing yourself? It takes courage to live a life of integrity and intention. It takes courage to live a life of generosity. it takes courage to love.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

You Are Your Own Ceiling

Some of the toughest challenges you’ll face come from inside yourself.

  • You set your own limits.
  • How high you can go reflects how tough you are mentally.
  • Most of the barriers we face are just in our heads. It takes a mind shift to realize that those barriers aren’t really there.

Limitations aren’t permanent.

Talent Is a Hallucinogen

When someone believes they’re more talented than everyone else, they struggle to handle setbacks. This mindset can be harmful. Instead of taking responsibility, they often blame others or external factors when things go wrong.

Use your talent to bring you forward, but always prioritize character building. Live a life of integrity.

Talent might give your life an instant boost, but character is what keeps you for the long term. Standing on the top isn’t everything; finishing strong matters more.

No One Knows What They Are Doing

When you begin a new journey in life, you won’t be an expert on day one. But that doesn’t mean you’re faking it; it just means you’re starting out.

  • The most important thing is to begin.

When you are living with the delusion that you know everything needed in order to succeed, you have a huge blind spot, and you are less likely to learn the skills and knowledge that are crucial for your success. When you know you don’t know, you are perfectly postured for learning.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

Bitterness and Other Poisons That Will Kill You

It’s not what happens in our life that shapes our lives; it’s how we react to those events – how we remember them and what meaning we attach to them.

  • Bitterness is like a poison that numbs you before it takes over. Without it, you’d feel the pain of lost opportunities, broken relationships, and disappointments. When the pain becomes too much, you might shield yourself with bitterness. But instead of protecting your heart, bitterness hardens it. It becomes the only emotion you can feel.
  • To break free, you need a change in mindset.
  • Forgiveness is one of the strongest shift in mind that you can do.

You Find What You Are

If you want to upgrade the kind of people in your life you need to upgrade your life

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

Be Average (at Almost Everything)

Our education system combines two philosophies:

  • The British system, which emphasizes standardization and conformity to mold young minds. The objective is to teach all students the same skills across various subjects.
  • The Renaissance concept. A renaissance man in the fifteenth century in Italy, Leon Battista Alberti, believed that individuals could excel in a lot of fields. This idea is called “the universal man.”

The real problem appears when the system expects us to excel in everything, leading to superficial learning.

Success Weighs More Than Failures

Every aspect of success carries a price tag. If your aspiration is fame, it will cost you your privacy. If your ambition is power, it may cost you pease of mind, If your desire is self-indulgent pleasures, it will cost you a future. If your goal is wealth, it may cost you your soul. It’s not that any of these goals is inherently wrong. It’s that while money, fame, and the trappings of success can be extraordinary outcomes of a life well lived, they make for terrible objectives. Your life purpose must be bigger than simply becoming famous, rich, or powerful. If these are the fuel of your life, you will always be running on empty. You will achieve everything you’ve ever wanted and still feel as if you have nothing. You must live for more. There is no level of success that will give meaning to your life. If you do not already have meaning in your life all that you attain in life will have no meaning.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

They say that money can’t buy happiness, but that isn’t precisely accurate true. What you do with your money can give you immeasurable happiness—just not in the way you would think. If you want your money to make you stupid happy, start giving it away. some of the most joyful people I know are those who’ve been generous with their tremendous wealth. some of the kindest people I know run some of the biggest companies in the world. Some of the humblest people i know have attained incredible fame, and still their favorite place to be is at home with their families.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

There Is No Such Thing as Too Much of a Good Thing

If you are fortunate enough to find a career that you love, you will never fully understand why other people look forward to vacations.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

You cannot:

  • be too forgiving
  • have too much of integrity
  • have too much ambition

My Favorite Bits

Success will not change you. What success does is give you the freedom and power to become how you really are. (..) Success only magnifies what is already within you.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

So many things in life are wonderful, but they are just not for me. That doesn’t mean they aren’t right for someone else. It may be in perfect alignment with that person’s intention. That is one reason we should never use our own personal values and priorities as the measure by which we judge others.

Erwin Raphael McManus, Mind Shift: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Think Like One

Author: Erwin Raphael McManus

Publication date: 3 October 2023

Number of pages: 160 pages


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