As a Man Thinketh by James Allen [Book Summary]

Do you want to be strong? Or do you want to do something special as you always dreamed of, like publishing your first book? Self-motivational writings generally advise you to be in the pursuit of dreams by taking safe steps and making move. Setting your primary options, keeping your desk clean and tidy or improving your communication abilities for upcoming meetings are the tasks given to create the best versions of yourself. But, this summary is far from offering you these recommendations.

The book As A Man Thinketh allows you to notice the strength you need already exists within you. When you read this summary, you will discover that many things such as the strength of your personality, your health, your achievements and living conditions are created by your thoughts.  And you will learn how to use mind power to be free from mind captivity and have a better life.

Buy this book from Amazon

Chapter 1 – Directing our thoughts transforms our lives.

Have we ever think about what does it mean to be human? It is a confusing question with a hint: man is the sum total of his own thoughts.

Every action we take is the result of our thoughts just like sprouting of a plant from a core. These actions create models. And then, our personality is shaped by these models. Character and personality are the results of the way of thinking. A man is the product of his thoughts. We become what we think about. But is it really important to know about the relationship between character and thought?

You definitely know someone who always fails at work and in relationships and also has pessimistic thoughts, right? It is not a coincidence that all these troubles coexist. Pessimistic thoughts and behaviors attract other problems in your lives. So you can easily understand that attitude and action are interconnected. For example, researchers can easily fall into despair because they find their actions insignificant at first. Attitude problems grow like a snowball and lead to devastating consequences. Still, these problems can be solved very simply.

If our thoughts affect our personality, we can change our character by changing our thoughts. Depressed people can see the existence of valuable things to be grateful and smile about by only changing their perspective and way of thinking.

By managing their thoughts, people can achieve more while destroying their harmful characteristic features. Working correctly on thoughts leads to what the author calls Divine Perfection. In other words, people can be cheerful, strong, peaceful, and wise by getting rid of terrible and harmful thoughts from their minds.

These are appealing enough to master your mind. So you should start controlling what you think as soon as possible. Other methods don’t work. Pessimistic thoughts will lead you to the dead end. Unfavorable attitudes and thoughts might ruin everything you love and value.

Chapter 2 – The impact of life on us is not unilateral. We are able to change our lives for the better.

There is always something to blame for failure. We look for external forces to explain why we are not responsible for failing to achieve something. Weather conditions, arguing with your mother or bad childhood memories are usually scapegoats. However, blaming external factors always mislead us. Doing so may save us for a short time but it hurts us in the long run.

All external forces such as age, parents, lack of education, business, friends, childhood events, economy, diseases, etc. which have an important effect on our lives are highly related to our personality/character. But this relation may not always be the way you think. It is too simple to think that life experiences and circumstances affect our lives and create our attitudes and thoughts we have today. However, the impact of life on us and our ability to change our lives are in the same direction. We can change our lives just as much as life changes us.

Instead of blaming circumstances for the troubles we are in today, we should know that our character also has a significant impact on the problems we face with.

So you are not imprisoned because of external factors or destiny. Instead, your negative thoughts and attitudes about life left you in a difficult situation.

Whether the character traits or conditions are more effective in any situation has not actually been proven. It is familiar that some people have more difficulty even though they have a good character and attitude. On the contrary, there are also many grasping and imposter people living in peace and prosperity.

So we can conclude that it would be wrong to associate the character with the circumstances. Similarly, by looking at his personality, it is not always possible to predict the problems that someone will face. There is a general belief that most of the prisoners are evil, but some may have a good heart.

Chapter 3 – Be healthier and more successful by having positive thoughts.

Some people age well while others don’t. The factors that cause unhealthy aging are harmful habits such as smoking and alcohol, lack of healthcare and defective genes. But attitude should also be taken into account.

We all know now that thoughts have a significant impact on both characters and circumstances. So it should not be surprising that our thoughts also affect our bodies. Depressed thoughts have serious health problems such as the high risk of heart attack, insufficient sleep, headache, and wrinkles.

On the other hand, what makes us happier and younger is to think and feel cheerful, peaceful, and lively. So feeling the existence of a healthy and young body depends on how healthy your thoughts are.

To succeed in anything and get what you want, you should manage your thoughts. You can succeed when you focus your thoughts on goals such as getting promoted at work, having harmonious relationships or strengthening your spiritual life.

It is necessary to stay away from all thoughts that hinder your goals and objectives. Any thoughts that make you feel pessimistic, frightened or uncertain should be eliminated because they will take you to failure.  At first, it is not easy to get rid of such thoughts but we can force the mind to think more actively, constructively and intentionally.


Chapter 4 – Success is our biggest responsibility. Don’t limit your dreams!

In the second part, we realized that the outside world is not entirely responsible for who we are today and for the mistakes we make. However, it would be also unfair to blame ourselves for all our failures in life, right?

Since this is not a useful attitude, we should renew our way of thinking.  The idea of victimization condemns us to oppression. Feeling like a victim allows others to treat us like a victim. They cannot make us suffer unless we want it. Therefore, it is up to us to achieve our freedom.

Our goals and values should be beyond the circumstances we are in. Our ambitions and dreams are leverage for success. So it is crucial to be with visionary people and has a vivid imagination.

A world without artists would be an inaesthetic and a stagnant place. The discovery of new worlds is only possible with imagination. Columbus, for example, imagined the existence of new worlds and began his journey of discovery.

Master your thoughts to improve your personality and conditions. Focus your thoughts on goals to become successful. Support your thoughts with your vivid imagination for inspiration. Thus, life will offer you a new opportunity: peace.

A peaceful way of life requires being at peace with thoughts. Mastering thoughts is a process and takes time but it is worth every second waiting for.

As a Man Thinketh by James Allen Book Review

Thoughts are a guide for a meaningful life. Ideas in our minds affect and shape our personality, achievements, living conditions and even our health. Keeping our thoughts in a good direction also puts our lives on track.

Free your mind from pessimism!

When you feel restless and tired, free your mind from negative thoughts like weeding out pests from your garden. This time the workplace is not the garden but your own mind. Find the thoughts poisoning your mind and destroy them so that you don’t meet again. Thus, positive thoughts will flourish in your mind, your attitudes will improve and you will live the life you’ve always wanted.

Buy this book from Amazon

Download Pdf

Download Epub


Savaş Ateş

I'm a software engineer. I like reading books and writing summaries. I like to play soccer too :) Good Reads Profile:

Recent Posts