1-Sentence-Summary: The Art of Possibility explores the remarkable effects of an open mentality and being prepared to seize opportunities, allowing a variety of possibilities into your life, and finding solutions to problems by being a hopeful person.
Read in: 4 minutes
Favorite quote from the author:
What differentiates happy, fulfilled people from those who don’t feel enough and always think of happiness as a future state of mind? It is simple – abundance and possibility. Allowing yourself to believe that your life can always change for the better is a beautiful state of being. Why? Because it gives you hope and it makes life worth living.
Life is a beautiful journey if you dare to live it fully. The Art of Possibility by Benjamin Zander explores the idea of keeping an open door in the back of your mind for opportunities, life-changing experiences, and more of the good things in life, all by adopting abundance and inviting possibility into your life.
Here are my three favorite lessons from the book:
- Embrace possibility by understanding how your brain perceives reality.
- Becoming a gifting person who finds meaning in making a difference will transform your life for the better.
- The present moment is all that you have, so make the best of it.
Let’s continue to learn from this book by exploring each lesson in detail, starting with the first one!
Lesson 1: Invite possibility into your life by seeking more than just survival and being less subjective
As humans, we’re wired to seek survival above anything else. Even if we may not realize it, our basic instinct primes in any situation, especially in our daily life when we get up, get dressed, and go to work to earn our resources. Essentially, we live in a World of Measurement, where survival is a struggle and resources are scarce.
The world of possibility assumes that there are enough resources for everybody and that categorizing choices in good vs. bad, or harmful vs. helpful is not necessary. Life wouldn’t be threatening, and the possibilities would be endless. So, what’s truly stopping you from living life to the fullest, and enjoying it every step of the way?
Your own assumptions! Being born into a world that categorizes everything, you too learn to create assumptions from any circumstance. However, these assumptions differ to a great extent from other creatures’ perceptions. Take frogs for example – they don’t see color, yet humans live all their lives staring at and interpreting palettes.
Therefore, the world we live in is purely a creation of our own minds. Once we get past the barrier of our own assumptions, we open the door to endless possibilities. What if the world as we see it is, in fact, much different? And what if survival wasn’t part of the game, would we focus more on our motivators? Taking the lenses of rationality off at times can help us improve our perception and allow us to hope for more.
Lesson 2: The gift of giving has endless benefits for our spirit
In a World of Measurement, we strive for our goals, which often include financial benefits and a highly-valued reputation. Becoming a human landmark in the world is a desired outcome for an average human, born and raised under traditional norms. However, studies and researches worldwide suggest that there’s a better approach to life.
Becoming less concerned with material things is a popular choice among spiritual leaders, and for a reason. Enhancing spiritual connections by looking to make a difference in the lives of those around you and embracing the philosophy of giving is a sure way to fulfilment and happiness. Think about it! Success and failure are interdependent.
Living successfully implies fearing failure. Failure implies a state of constant dissatisfaction. However, what if you could ditch this game altogether? Instead, embrace the possibility of living life to make a difference and give back to the universe. Be kind to people, the nature, and all creatures.
Being a person of the universe and embracing the philosophy of giving can prove to be extremely rewarding for the soul. Happiness arises from helping others, not from being successful. When people learn to rely on you, they’ll stop seeing you as competition. To live meaningfully, you’ll have to put your trust in the universe and know that its resources are inexhaustible.
Lesson 3: Work with what you have, starting from the present moment
Oftentimes, our assumptions take our mind way further into a problem than it should be. Starting from faulty premises, we’re capable of ruining great moments and letting remarkable opportunities pass us by. To break away from this vicious trait, start living in the present, right where you are, right now.
Instead of wishing things were different, commit to loving your present circumstances and making the best of them. Let’s explore this idea using a case study: You’re on your way to a dream holiday with your partner. However, once you get there, the weather turns bad, and it seems that it’ll rain for the entire week.
Now, you have two options: mourn what your vacation could’ve been like, or enjoy it as it is, exploring things throughout the rain and enjoying some quality time with your partner. The choice to enjoy life and embrace any possibility is yours, always. Practice this approach to life by learning to deal with difficult feelings.
Instead of trying to escape them, face them upfront and feel them completely. Facing the storm gets you a better chance to make it to the other side, rather than waiting for it to hit you while hiding under a stone. Build resilience and train your mind to face uncomfortable truths. Make the best of any situation by settling with the idea that the present is simply the way it is, whether you like it or not.
The Art of Possibility Review
The Art of Possibility explores a new way of living by unlocking a different mindset. It all starts by accepting variables as a natural part of life instead of living off of our own assumptions, manifesting abundance and seizing opportunities, and most importantly, living in the present and always leaving room for possibilities. The book will give you hope, strengthen your spirit, and liberate you from your prejudice and subjective assumptions so that you can live life more fully, freely, and through infinite possibilities.
Who would I recommend The Art of Possibility summary to?
The 30-year-old person who’s living a minimalist life and wants to explore their spirituality, the 40-year-old person who is going through a mid-life crisis and wants to find hope in their life, or the 27-year-old person who can’t find their direction and is looking for comfort in the idea of endless possibilities.