This is a fantastic book and it touches on many of the concepts and ideas that have been floating around but been intangible to me until now. I love that it’s so easy to read and the concepts are very well researched and set out simply for the ‘average’ Joe.
Here are the highlights I’ve found! (There’s much more in the book, but these were the points that really jumped out at me.)
- It’s your thoughts and your emotions that control your world. Sir Isaac Newton did much research on the impact of mind on matter; however it hasn’t seen the light of day until now and is emerging as the field of quantum physics.
- Quantum physics is essentially the study of how our thoughts affect the physical world around us. Each ‘thing’ is made up of tiny molecules and each molecule is made up of tiny particles of vibrating energy. This energy constantly interacts with other energies meaning that we are all connected. There is no definitive line between a plant, person and volcano; it’s simply energy moving around.
- Thoughts have a habit of multiplying, (neurologically, thoughts that fire together will wire together,) and practically, the more you think about your husband not helping enough around the house, the more evidence you seem to find to prove it!
- Feeling positive is actually much more powerful that thinking positive! In fact, thinking positively and feeling negative is a recipe for disaster!
- Japanese researcher Dr Masaru Emoto has been researching the effect of thoughts, feelings and labels have on water. To one jar of water he may say “I love you” to another “you’re ugly” another jar may be labelled with the word hate, another was prayed upon by a monk and some were played classical music compared to heavy metal. When the water was frozen then inspected under a microscope the shape of the ice crystals were remarkably different. The positive jars showed crystals that were beautiful, symmetrical and classically snow flake like. The negative jars on the other hand showed crystals that messy, random and very unstructured. This is hard evidence that thoughts affect the things around you in profound ways.
- The world will always be your mirror and reflect what’s going on inside. When you focus on fear, loss or problems you simply attract more of that into your life.
- The key to shifting how you feel about what happens is in letting go of the outcome you expect. Trust that things will work out for the best and take positive action towards it. It’s when we become desperate and begin to fear things not turning out that we create negative energy and negative outcomes in our life.
- When we are able to let go of the outcome, we move to a place of acceptance. It means moving forward without judging or criticising.
- Self compassion is the ability to treat ourselves kindly even when things don’t go our way, or we’re not proud of what’s occurred. Self compassion stops a cycle of beating yourself up and diminishing your self esteem. It also empowers us to accept us as we are, in recognising our failures and weaknesses and being able to accept ourselves as we are, we also become more humble and less judgemental of others.
- Dr Bruce Moseley did a remarkable study on the effect of placebos in knee surgery. He split his patients into three groups of 60 all requiring the same surgery. Group one received a traditional operation, group two had a different, but still traditional knee operation and group three received no operation at all, instead had three small incisions around the knee (while under full anaesthetic) to look like they had the operation. The third group recovered equally as well as the first two groups, one man from the third group who had to use a cane to walk around was now able to play basketball with his grandchildren. This demonstrates the incredible power of our own belief to heal.
- PhD Paul Pearsall has spent 30 years studying people that have had heart transplants, he notes one 8 year old girl that had a transplant from a 10 year old murdered donor. She began having nightmares of the murder that lead to the murderer being captured. This shows that our hearts and our bodies hold memories not just our minds. Other heart recipients report significant personality shifts after receiving their heart transplants, all of which relate to the hearts donor.
- During the Israeli – Lebanese war in 1983 Dr Charles Alexander wanted to test the power of meditation. He set up in a hotel in East Jerusalem and twice daily came together with between 65 and 241 people to meditate on peace. During the two months war deaths, terrorist attacks, fires, hospital emergencies and car accidents decreased markedly. At the conclusion of the study all the statistics returned to their former levels. Their research paper “The international peace project in the middle east” is available online. Similar studies have been conducted around the world giving the same results and show that it only takes a group of around 100 people to influence a city of a million people.
- An Indian guru once stopped in the middle of a lecture and said “do you want to know what my secret is”… “I don’t mind what happens.” This speaks of the ability to detach from the outcome and move forward with acceptance.
- Happiness precedes success not the other way around.
- Gratitude is a habit that will bring happiness.
- Mindfulness is the ability to be in the present moment rather that in our own head. The more time we spend in the present the easier it is to notice and be grateful for the life we have.
I really enjoyed this book. There are lots of new and very well researched facts, which I adore in a book! There are also stories and antidotes to keep you really engaged and the layout is so simple it’s a fast read with a surprising amount of depth. Another really wonderful self help book from Andrew Matthews.