An old entry I stumbled on my journal just this morning. This is from YEARS ago so you would see my writing style a bit different. But thoughts are the same.
And hey Dad! You happened to pop up on this journal entry. Sorry, not sorry 😉
The Power of Positive Thinking and Me
My Dad had a secret name. Mr. Inspiration.
He was inspiration personified, especially when I needed it most. Often during the darkest hours of my life, Mr. Inspiration would make his grand appearance to uplift my subdued spirits, and it always won in battling away my lack of confidence, no matter how deep-seated it was.
In Grade 8, one day, My Dad came over and handed me a beautifully wrapped gift.
“Open it, sweetheart”. He said.
I was very excited to be holding such a beautiful thing in my hands and hurriedly started tearing the paper away, curious to find out what it could be. Inside I found a book named “The Power of Positive Thinking” written by Norman Vincent Peale. For those of you who don’t know this particular author, Dr.Peale is considered as the founding father of Power of Positive Thinking. He was also one of the most widely read and listened to writer and speaker on his formulas of faith and optimism for better living for millions of people all over the world. The moment I read the title of the book, needless to say, I was gripped. I couldn’t wait to read this mysterious book which sure sounded promising. My Dad understood exactly what is going on in my mind and smiled.
I looked at him questioningly.
“Well, books are for reading, right?” I stated the obvious with a smirk.
But Dad just brushed it off. “I want you to read one chapter each day so that by the time you finish reading it, each chapter will be deeply imprinted on your mind. So you won’t forget what it has to say to you that easily”
I didn’t quite understand this. “But Dad, that is not how you read a book” I decided to give him a crash course on good reading habits.
“You will lose the rhythm that you need to establish with your reading if you stop and stutter around the chapters without any sort of continuity.” There, I told him what he needed to know. My Inner-Self patted me on the shoulder proudly as though complimenting on a job well done.
Dad sighed and sat down on the couch next to me.
“Listen, I know you are a bit sensitive when it comes to dealing with difficult situations in life and making tough decisions. You are not that confident in your abilities even though you are smart. Sometimes, in your heart, you know that there is no reason to be scared. But still, you shy away from people and things acting unsure of, God knows what! Right now, at this moment, I am with you. But tomorrow, when you get married and leave, I cannot possibly get in touch with you and hold and comfort you when things go wrong on your side. I need you to replace my presence with this book. This book will guide you through life events that you will face and help you with right decisions when you need answers. But you have to imprint the contents of this book in your mind from now on. You will bookmark the pages where Dr. Peale talks about confidence, faith, trust and all that is good for you and store it in your mind for easy reference in future. This will be your Bible when you get caught in storms on the roads ahead”.
Create your own Sunshine
I was fascinated as always listening to him. Why! He is right about everything he said about me. I realize sometimes that I am too dependant on him for his gentle ways of dealing with my problems and boosting up my self-confidence.
One time, My Dad got exasperated with my blabbering of my “good for nothingness”. He threw his hands in the air and told me.
“Vinma, look at me honey.
You can be anything you want in life. No one else, but you hold the key to unlocking your abilities to the fullest. When you do not trust yourself, that is when things actually start going wrong and you succumb to defeat. Don’t be that way”.
I came back to the present. Dad is still here with me but he won’t be, in future. I do not want to be alone and accept defeat and turn back when odds are stacked against me. I need something to hold on to. So I decided to try out the book just the way my Dad asked me to read. Each day I stumbled on a new philosophy, a new revelation, or a unique insight and I never forgot any of them just because I savoured each and every word written by the Author.
You might wonder why this book a big deal. I do not know how to explain other than sharing how it changed me.
As I write these words in my journal, I casually glance at the book Power of Positive Thinking which is still my desk/bedside companion… it doesn’t look new anymore though. Actually, it looks twenty years older! And yes, it is still my Bible. I read one chapter every day. I read and reach the end of the book and then I start all over again, all the while picking up new insights without fail on my way.
My Dad doesn’t live with me anymore like we both expected. But I have the book and it has taken me to places. Places I thought I would never go and people I thought I would never meet. My confidence grows every day and my positivism shines through adversities almost all the time… Well, sometimes, not so much but hey! I am just a human being. The day my Dad gifted me this book, I did not realize I was holding a key to unlock my own future and control it with the power of positive thinking and the ability to believe in myself. But now I realize that…
And one day, when you happen to read this book, I promise, it will grip you as well just by the title of the first chapter, “Believe in Yourself”.