“As a man thinketh, so is he” Proverbs 23:7
Much has been written about why some people seem to succeed in reaching their goals despite rather daunting circumstances, and others seem to go off track rather quickly. All sorts of psychological and sociological theories have been advanced, but it may just be as simple as the thoughts one thinks.
I’ll tell the story of a young person who grew up in poverty. This family had almost nothing and the attendant problems of medical bills, lack of grocery money, lack of proper clothing, lack of transportation and so on. This young person was determined to go to college, no matter what. The goal seemed unreachable to some because of lack of money, but the person both expected it to be hard, and expected it to be possible, eventually.
Before attempting college, he had to get money for a car. He got a job at just above minimum wage and worked full time for months until the car and insurance could be procured. He then enrolled in community college and worked part time while attending college full time. He decided to use some of the community college time to get a skill that would pay better. He became a pharmacy tech, and immediately saw an increase in income. Then it was on to university. This meant procuring housing and another job. He got a job first, working full time night shift (because it paid so much better than day shift). He decided sleep could be most easily moved to fit the schedule. Then he found an apartment. It was not close to the college, and was in a lower income section of town, yet was quiet. This was important due to the need for sleep. Then he enrolled in the university. Due to the need to work full time, it was hard to take a full load in college, so he just took 12 units at a time, and with care, planning and working premium shifts, he was able to pay off each semester’s tuition as it came due. He saved for emergencies such as car repairs, and kept plodding along. There was a bit of time for social activities, but these had to be chosen wisely and around work and study. This went on for 5 years, and humorous things happened like falling asleep in class and falling out of the desk onto the floor. But eventually graduation happened, and a career progression in the field of education, a graduate degree (earned over years of time), and promotions.
How did this young person succeed in meeting his goals when no one he knew in high school did? He never expected it to be easy, he was willing to do whatever it took, he was able to delay gratification, and he never gave up. Persistence, belief in the value of the sacrifice and the big picture got him through, on to a better life and out of the poverty he was raised in. We think our thoughts, we experience emotion triggered by our thoughts, and we act in accordance with out thoughts. It all begins in the mind. “As a man thinketh, so is he”.


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