Article by Paramahansa Yogananda. We are what we think we are. The habitual inclination of our thoughts determines our talents and abilities, and our personality. Thus, some think they are writers or artists, industrious or lazy, and so on. What if you want to be something other than what you presently think you are? You may argue that others have been born with the special talent you lack but desire to have. This is true. But they had to cultivate the habit of that ability some time — if not in this life, then in a previous one. So whatever you want to be, start to develop that pattern now.

You can instill any trend in your consciousness right now, provided you inject a strong thought in your mind; then your actions and whole being will obey that thought. Do not settle for a one-track mentality. You should be able to succeed in any profession or do anything you put your mind to.[…]

Thought is the matrix of all creation; thought created everything. If you hold on to that truth with indomitable will, you can materialize any thought. There is nothing that can gainsay it.[…]

Let nothing weaken the will behind positive thoughts

Once you have said, “I will,” never give in. If you say, “I will never catch cold,” and the next morning you have a terrible cold and are discouraged, you are allowing your will to remain weak. You must not get discouraged when you see something happening that is contrary to what you have affirmed. Keep on believing, knowing it will be so. If outwardly you say, “I will,” but inwardly think, “I can’t,” then you neutralize the power of thought and emasculate your will. If your will has become weakened by fighting disease or other reverses, you have to take the help of someone else’s will to strengthen you through their prayers and positive affirmations on your behalf. But you must also do your part to change your consciousness. That is my advice to you. Develop your will power and positive thinking, and you will find your body, mind, and soul working to mold everything in life according to your will.

As thought is the most powerful agent in your life, provided you know how to develop and use it, never let the power of your thought be diluted by mixing with weak-minded or negative people ─ unless you are very strong-minded and can instead strengthen these people. Failures should align themselves with successful people. The weak should seek the company of those who are stronger. People who have no self-control should associate with those who are self-disciplined ─ the greedy man, for example, should eat with the man of self-control; with such an example for him, he will begin to reason, “I also can control my appetite.”