This weekend I spent my leisurely time eagerly devouring the infamous “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill.
My first thoughts were “what an incredible fantastic book!”
Encased in the binding are contents to propel you life in the way of success, and to think with a successful mindset filled with desires and faith.
“Your big opportunity may be right where you are now.” -Napoleon Hill
Now, the practical text does come with its price.
There’s no easy way to program your subconscious mind to only think in a state of success. And that’s what you’ll need to do to hack your brain to be a positive-though-machine.
It takes time, patience and persistence.
As Mr. Hill says, the price you pay to unlock your full human potential and power is persistence. It’s up to you to decide whether the price you pay, is worth having access to your desires and personal power.
I think persistence is a small price to pay for your power. But, that’s for you to decide.
Allow me to share some of my favorite lessons and practical strategies from the 78-year-old textbook.
Essentially, the name of the game is: “think success, and you’ll receive success.”
What’s the opposite? Think like a failure, and you’ll receive failures.
As normal humans, we almost always assume the worst in any situation. For example, your daughter didn’t call you back, well then something must have gone wrong. Or a friend was let go from her job—then she’s going to have a rough time and have trouble finding another one, etc. This is a “failure mindset.”
Successful people, always assume the best.
For example, assuming the best in the scenarios above: if your daughter didn’t call you back it’s because she’s so busy! And if you’re friend was let go, then she must be ready for a newer and even better opportunity!
Assume the best. It’s much more fun than the worst for sure! It also signifies a level of success.
Let’s assume you’ve had some mishaps or what people would call “failures” in your life.
Often people that are considered “failures” have just made a habit of thinking in a reactive, and failure state of mind. It’s not permanent, it’s a state of mind. Luckily, your state of mind can change.
When Thomas Edison was accused of failing time and time again (while attempting to create the light bulb) he said: “I have not failed, I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
There’s value in learning. And there’s value in experience.
People that make a habit of always thinking in successful terms and positive outcomes will consequently receive them. After all, Edison did find a way to create glass orbs with light. It just took 10,000+ experiments.
“Luck” truly is in your own hands.
That’s not to say that successful people don’t experience failure, it just doesn’t hinder them. And in fact, I don’t think failure really exists. For me, at this point everything is successful— even if I didn’t receive the outcome I expected.
Success and failure are two sides of the same coin of achievement.
I know it’s cliche but with every failure, comes a seed of success. A “failure” is an achievement like any other. Maybe it wasn’t the achievement you were looking for, but it’s still an accomplishment.
It’s a matter of perspective, really. I’ll take Edison’s side here, after all he was incredibly intelligent and wealthy.
Never Stop Exploring.
Rarely do people get things right the first time around.
Successful people come across successful circumstances because of their determination and persistence. Many times, success is a shot in the dark. For real. You don’t KNOW if a certain product or method is going to perform well. You must experiment and try it to find out!
Results come from testing in real time.
You’ll find that very successful people have this mindset. Richard Brandon is not always sure what will work and what won’t in business. He failed miserably with the record label early on, and even with the airlines before he really figured it out.
Many times you just don’t know what’s going to work until you get in, get your hands dirty and try something new. Cultivate taking risks to continually think of how you can break the mold. Even Seth Godin embraces this philosophy.
At a recent Seth Godin appearance, he encouraged the audience to “fail often” and embrace fear. When fear shows up, it’s an indication that you might fail. Ironically, that is also an indication that you’re likely to succeed. He uses fear as a barometer to feel good about a new project or proposal.
I saw Mr. Godin live in NYC recently, here’s the full talk 😉
Fear is just signal that you’re stepping into unknown territory. Maybe you’re doing something that you’ve never done before. Yes, falling down is a possibility. Luckily, it’s easy enough to get back up again.
This is the territory where great ideas (and let’s be honest, lousy ideas too) are formed. The point here is that you can’t just produce amazing ideas. Many of the very best ideas and inspiration come from lesser-than concepts.
After all, Edison did create the light bulb. There were 10,000+ stepping stones on the way to the finished product. And each light bulb that didn’t work carried with it an improvement for the next version.
We don’t regard Thomas Edison as a failure. As a society we esteem him as a “genius.”
Failure is really just a part of success. It’s part of the process and is inevitable as a means to greatness.
Does a baby give up and say it failed when it can’t walk for the first time? Nope. The little human falls down and tries again, and again, and again. A baby is relentless and will keep attempting the motions even though it knows it may fall. Yet, they are patient, and their loving parents are patient with them too in learning to walk.
We are all learning to walk. Adults deserve the same sort of patience, loving kindness and support in entering new endeavors.
The moral: sift through the mud to find your diamonds.
There no such thing as failure. There is no way to arrive at success without being willing to take risks, try new things, put yourself out there, and be willing to fall.
The silver lining? Everything becomes an achievement of success with persistence!
Consequently, there is no way to fail!
The world is your oyster. Now go make your pearls.
Thoughts? Agree or disagree with me? Let me know in the comments!