Can You Make People Think They Are Thinking?
Many writers walk a fine line. It has taken me some time to realize this, and while I suspected it in the back of my mind, I had not put it into words. While reading recently, I came across the following quote, and to my astonishment, there it was! A simple description of my thoughts from about a century ago. As the old saying goes, there truly is nothing new under the sun!
The quote is:
"If you make people think they're thinking, they'll love you; But if you really make them think, they'll hate you." Don Marquis (1878-1937)
Most of my writing centers around life, leadership, and inspiration, and I do my best to provide material that will help readers think more deeply, more thoroughly, and in new ways. I try to help them broaden their perspective and build hope to inspire them to take action both in and on their lives.
One of the reasons I often use quotes in my writing is to get the point across in the best way possible. If the words have already been written and written well, why wouldn't I use them and give credit where credit is due? A short quote will usually make a more significant impact than many paragraphs. To deliver the most value to readers, I believe it is wise to incorporate great quotes in essays and articles. Sure, it takes more work, but it is worth it.
Thinking about thinking
While I love Marquis's quote, I do not agree with it. Exaggeration can be helpful at times to make a point, and this quote does it well. I want not to make people think they are thinking but rather help them think more deeply and clearly. If it takes making people hate me because I help them think, so be it. In the end, they will be far better off.
What makes someone like me think I can help others think? Is it the many decades of life and experience I have collected on this earth? Partly. Is it because I have served in top leadership roles, coached, mentored, and taught thousands of people in the past 50 years? Perhaps. The one qualification that trumps all of the others is my drive and love for learning – my passion for learning, if you will.
Out of my passion for learning is a heartfelt desire to help other people create a life for which they can be proud. Not proud in a selfish or boastful way, but taking pride in knowing they are, using their time on this earth well, and living a good life.
While I try not to make my articles about me, in this case, it was unavoidable. I see my life and yours as intertwined with desire and curiosity to know more and become more. It is who I am, and I believe who you are in the depths of our hearts. It is what I will work on becoming until my final day on this earth.
Know, from the depths of my heart - I wish you an amazing life filled with a passion for learning and living and filled with a passion for helping others in their walk through life. May you have a life filled with wisdom, compassion, hope, and great joy!