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Reflections from the book ‘Think and Grow Rich’ authored by Napoleon Hill

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By Muhammad Asim Jasra (PSP)

This is a comprehensive ‘what-to-do and how-to-do-it’ book which reveals a secret to happy, successful and rich life. Many famous successful persons such as Henry Ford, Graham Bell and Woodrow Wilson used this secret and lived fulfilling and inspiring lives. This secret is picked by those who have an extreme urge for it or searching for it already.

This book defines richness as inclusive saying that great riches not only include money but also relations, understanding, mental peace, ability to enjoy happiness and harmony. When riches begin to come, they come so quickly, in such great abundance, that one wonders where they have been hiding during all those lean years.

Introduction to the author

  • Napoleon Hill (1883- 1970)- an American self- help writer who is best known for his magnum opus Think and Grow Rich which was published in 1937.
  • Other books authored by him are as under:
    • The Law of Success (1928)
    • The Magic Ladder to Success (1930)
    • The Master- Key to Riches (1945)
    • Grow Rich! With Peace of Mind (1967)
    • You Can Work Your Own Miracles (1971)

Reflections from the book ‘Think and Grow Rich’

  1. Desire

 All achievements and earned riches have their beginning in an idea. If you are ready for the secret, you already possess half of it. There must be a burning desire to have and apply that secret. Desires if stronger than the hurdles in the way, lead to destinations. Strong desires survive disappointment, discouragement, temporary defeat, criticism, and the constant reminding of waste of time.

Opportunity comes in the disguise of misfortune or temporary defeat. Perhaps, for this reason, so many people fail to recognize it. An intangible impulse of thought can be transmuted into material rewards by the application of known principles. First of all, one must know what one wants. Then he should stand by the desire until it is realized.

The most common cause of failure is the habit of quitting. Success may be few inches away. Never quit. Success is just ‘one more attempt’ away. Sense of failure is a trickster; it comes when success is nearby. Success is a state of mind that attracts further success. The secret of riches will strike you amidst you keep on trying for your goal. Our thoughts or dreams make our mind attract ways to materialize them. Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve that. Desire is the starting point of all achievements. When you have burning desire for a goal, it would make you insensitive to the pain of struggle.

Six steps to get riches

  • Fix your goal. It must be specific.
  • Determine tradeoff. What are you willing to give in return for what you want to have? It may be your time, skill, or some kind of investment.
  • Fix a date when you want to have your goal.
  • Create a definite plan and begin at once.
  • Have a mission statement.
  • Read this statement aloud twice daily; believe that you have already materialized your goal.

Every failure brings with it the seeds of equivalent success. Have a dream and then put it into practice. Thomas Edison invented electricity lamp after more than 10,000 failures. Marconi’s friends took him to a psychopathic hospital when he announced that he had discovered a principle through which he could send messages through the air. When you have a burning desire for a certain purpose, it would enable you to attract or catch the ways to fulfill it. Burning desire is a great asset. It can transmute itself into its physical equivalent. Both poverty and riches are mental conditions. Ground realities just follow them. There exist no limitations to the potential of your mind. We set these limitations arbitrarily.

  • Faith

In your quest for any goal, faith should follow burning desire. Faith can be developed by autosuggestion. When desire is passed on to the subconscious mind with faith, the subconscious mind will get it materialized through the most direct and practical media available. Thoughts attract like kind of thoughts; thus after accumulation, the very kind of thoughts become powerful in one’s mind

Desire and faith stimulate physical actions and strategies. Ideas have power. All the man-made developments on this planet started from idea in the mind of individuals.

Autosuggestion

Principle of autosuggestions implies that one should pick the thoughts which inspire one to achieve one’s goals. Autosuggestion regulates the thoughts that reach the subconscious mind. It works when it is well-mixed with emotions and feelings. When we convince our subconscious mind with the help of autosuggestion and belief, then it offers you physical plans to achieve your goals.

Do not wait for plan. Concentrate on your desire. Your subconscious mind will give you the plans. Plans will flash in the form of an inspiration into your mind through the sixth sense. Put them into actions immediately. Do not follow reasons; follow your obsessions while creating or implementing your plans. Man is the master of his destiny because he has the power to influence his own subconscious mind.

  • Specialized Knowledge

General Knowledge is of little use in the accumulation of money.Knowledge attracts money when it is organized and intelligently directed through practical plans of action to the definite end of accumulation of money.An educated man is the one who has so developed his mental faculties that he can acquire anything he wants without violating the rights of others. You do not need to keep all the knowledge in your mind. You should know only the source from which any specialized knowledge or the answer of your question can be obtained. Ideas work only when they are supported by the relevant specialized knowledge.

A man who has discovered how to increase the intensity of thought to the point where he can freely communicate with sources of knowledge not available through ordinary rate of thought is called a genius. Genius status is acquired only when mind is stimulated to draw the forces available through creative imagination.

  • Imagination

Through the faculty of imagination, the finite mind of man has direct communication with infinite intelligence. The more it is used, the more it develops.  

The purpose must be definite. The riches are not the product of hard work alone. Definite demands and application of definite principles work. They do not come by chance or luck. Never depend on luck only.  Ideas are intangible but more powerful than the tangible brain that gives birth to them. They have the power to live on, after the brain has returned to dust.

  • Organized Planning

Plans must be practical and workable. If your first plan fails, try another. Do not get discouraged by temporary defeat. This only means that there is something wrong with your plan. A quitter never wins and a winner never quits. Do not take defeat seriously.

Major attributes of leadership

  • Courage based upon knowledge of self and of one’s occupation
  • Self-control
  • A keen sense of justice
  • The habit of doing more than paid for
  • A pleasing personality
  • Sympathy and understanding
  • Mastery of details
  • Responsibility
  • Cooperation
  • Delegation of powers to the capable subordinates
  • Ability to get others to perform
  • Give credit to the deserving
  • Leads by encouraging, not by fear
  • Advertise your authority not by words, but by your conduct

Our inability to exploit our true potential in life is breach of trust with nature which has blessed us with this. Everyone enjoys the kind of work for which he is best suited. First, decide exactly what kind of job you want. If the job does not already exist, then create it.

QQS principle of selling your services

Q = Quality of service

Q = Quantity of service

S = Spirit of service

Deficiency in service can be covered by pleasing personality but nothing covers the vacuum created by the lack of pleasing conduct.

A question

Would you take your own services if you are put in the shoes of purchaser of your services?

Major causes of failure

  • Lack of a well-defined purpose in life
  • Lack of ambition to aim above mediocrity
  • Lack of self-discipline
  • Failure to take due care of one’s health
  • Procrastination (They wait for the time to be right.)
  •  Lack of persistence
  •  Repulsive personality
  • Lack of power of decision
  • Fear of failure
  • Fear to take calculated risks
  • Wrong selection of team
  • Failure to have open mind
  • Lack of concentration of effort
  • Failure to save money
  • Lack of enthusiasm
  • Inability to cooperate with others
  • Intentional dishonesty

You must have capital enough to absorb the shock of your mistakes. Over cautiousness is as harmful for success as under cautiousness. Self-analysis is must for improvement in your personality and personal services.

  • Decision

Never procrastinate. Don’t get influenced easily by the opinion of others when you reach decisions. Don’t let your confidence shattered by the opinion or ridicule of others. Keep your own counsel. Do it before you tell the world that you intend to do it. The value of decisions depends upon the courage required to render them.

  • Persistence

Persistence is directly proportional to the intensity of desire. An invisible Power tests your persistence by offering temporary defeat or resistance.

Foundations of persistence

  • Definiteness of purpose
  • Intense desire
  • Belief in one’s ability
  • Definite plan of action
  • Accurate knowledge
  • Cooperation
  • Will power
  • Relevant habit
  • A mind closed against all discouraging influences
  • A friendly alliance/ master mind alliance

Beware of the following:

  • Failure to define what you want
  • Procrastination
  • Lack of interest in acquiring specialized knowledge
  • Blaming the circumstances
  • Quitting on the signs of defeat
  • Lack of desire
  • Searching for shortcuts
  • Fear of criticism

Creative faculty versus reasoning faculty

The reasoning faculty is often faulty because it is guided by one’s own accumulated experience which varies from person to person. Ideas received through one’s creative faculty are reliable. For this reason, your reasoning faculty will not allow you to set targets higher than your already tapped potential.

When you are struck in a problem and searching for its solution, then do the following things:

  • Use one or more mind stimulants. Examples of mind stimulants are music, getting mentally relaxed and being in the company of charming persons.
  • Have a clear picture of known and unknown factors.
  • Let the sub- conscious mind play its role. Sub- conscious mind comes into play when you take break from work, get mentally relaxed or sleep.

Why men seldom succeed before forty?

The most productive years lie between 40 and 60. High achievers start learning the art of transmuting their sexual urge in their 30s. Transmutation is possible by just redirecting your thoughts. For this, you have to identify which thought is positive and which thought is negative. Voluntary self- effort is the key to transmutation. Love stimulate the human mind to tap its potential. Failed loved is greater asset than successful love.

Media of personal magnetism

  • Handshake
  • Tone of voice
  • Posture and carriage of body
  • The vibration of thought
  • Body adornment
  • The Subconscious Mind

It works day and night.It connects finite mind with infinite intelligence.One should feed it with desires and positive emotions. Let no undesirable thought reach it. Only emotionalized thoughts influence it. It understands the language of emotions.

Examples of positive emotions

  • Desire
  • Faith
  • love and affection
  • Enthusiasm
  • Hope
  • Happiness

Seven major negative emotions to be avoided

  • Fear
  • Jealousy
  • Hatred
  • Revenge
  • Greed
  • Superstition
  • Anger
  • The Brain

We have limited our knowledge to physical /tangible things, yet all of us are controlled by forces which are unseen and intangible. It has been determined that there are from 10 billion to 14 billion nerve cells arranged in definite pattern in the human cerebral cortex. It is inconceivable that such an intricate network should be in existence for the sole purpose of maintaining physical body.

  1. The Sixth Sense

It is a medium through which infinite intelligence may communicate voluntarily. It may warn you in time of danger. It may alert you to embrace opportunities on their time. Let great men shape your life. Make them your invisible counselors.

The six basic fears

  • Poverty
  • Criticism
  • Ill health
  • Loss of love
  • Old age
  • Death

How to control the fear of poverty?

If you want riches, you must refuse to accept any circumstances that lead to poverty. Accepting poverty is a great weakness of any human being. Never accept it. Burn your boats and make your retreat impossible. Poverty is a state of mind; change your thoughts. Seek the company of successful, blessed and talented ones. Riches are better than poverty without any shadow of doubt but Riches must be earned through fair means. Keep in mind that poverty is a curse but adopting unfair means to remove your poverty is a bigger curse.

Symptoms of fear of poverty

  • Indifference
  • Indecision
  • Doubt
  • Over-caution
  • Procrastination

Fear of criticism robs man of his initiative and kills his power of imagination. An estimate showed that 75 % of all people who visit physicians for professional services are suffering from hypochondria. Relieve yourself of all fears and worries. Accept death as an inescapable event. Protect your mind against negative influences. Do your self-analysis by asking relevant questions and answering them truthfully. It is a great fact that the one thing over which you have absolute control is your thoughts. Men with negative minds tried to convince Thomas A. Edison that he could not build a machine that would record and reproduce the human voice because they said that no one else had ever produced such a machine.

Conclusion

This is an insightful book which enables you to push your limits in all walks of life. It provides a deep understanding of how can we best use the power of our sub- conscious mind. I recommend this book for all the readers. Do not go to bed without reading a few paragraphs from this book in the sequence.

                           —————–The End—————

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