If you have been following this blog for awhile, then you know I am an avid reader. I always have an audio book in my car and it is my goal to read at least one personal development book every month.
This month I am reading a classic, Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich, the 1960 version. While the language is formal and a little outdated, his concepts and advice are as relevant today as they were when it was originally published in 1937.
This is one of those times when you really should take notes while you read or you will lose too much of Hill’s valuable wisdom. I took notes in my Success Journal so that I could capture the nuggets and reflect on them again later.
Today I’d like to share some quotes from Think and Grow Rich and the thoughts Hill inspired in me when I read them.
“Opportunity has a sly habit of slipping in by the back door, and often it comes disguised in the form of misfortune or temporary defeat. Perhaps this is why so many fail to recognize opportunity.”
Get in the habit of looking at your failures, disappointments and burdens and asking; What is the positive here? What good can come from this? What lesson(s) can I learn? Shift your focus from victim to observer to get some emotional distance and find the hidden opportunity.
“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe it can achieve.”
It all starts with a thought. Whether you think you are defeated or you are a success, you’re right. We all have the power to choose how we think in any situation. It is up to us to choose our thoughts wisely.
“Every person who wins in any undertaking must be willing to burn his ships and cut all sources of retreat. Only by so doing can one be sure of maintaining that state of mind known as a burning desire to win, essential to success.”
If you have a plan B, you will use it. In order to achieve greatness in anything you must be willing to fully commit. You must leave yourself no way to retreat or escape, your only option being to press forward and move through the challenge. If you leave yourself a way out, a trap door, or a fallback position, you will surely use it when the going gets tough. If you are falling short of something you want in life, look to see if you’ve burned ALL your ships.
“No more effort is required to aim high in life, to demand abundance and prosperity, than is required to accept miser and poverty.”
I’ve met several people in my life who seem to work hard at being unhappy. I can’t help but wonder how their life would be different if they put the same energy into positive, affirming thoughts.
“Knowledge is only potential power. It becomes power only when, and if, it is organized into definite plans of action and directed to a definite end.”
Learning what to do to succeed is only half of the success equation. How many people do you know who understand exactly what they need to do to lose weight, and yet they still carry the extra pounds? Knowledge without action is useless, other than to possibly impress people at a dinner party. Fix your goals in your mind then do something every day to move towards those goals. There is a time for thinking and a time for doing. Feeling stalled, overwhelmed, dissatisfied? Take action!
These are just a couple of the nuggets I recorded in my journal. Think and Grow Rich has been on my bookshelf for years, waiting patiently for me to find the time to read it. If you haven’t read this book I highly encourage you to do so. Once you do, you will see glimpses of Hill’s work in the messages of many of today’s personal development thought leaders: Tony Robbins, Jim Rohn, Wayne Dyer, Brian Tracy and Zig Ziglar, just to name a few. I guess good ideas never go out of style.
Have you read Think and Grow Rich?
What book do you recommend I read next?