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Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
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Think and Grow Rich has been recommended by several friends and I read it in 2019 together with a mastermind group. It is no surprise that it is so popular and frequently recommended. It contains so much information, it will take several re-readings to absorb the content and put it all into action.
My Favorite Quotes
- All achievement, all earned riches, have their beginning in an idea.
- Every failure brings with it the seed of an equivalent success.
- I had to succeed because I finally ran out of things that wouldn’t work. -Thomas Edison
- Faith removes limitations.
- Every company is looking for people who can give something of value, whether it be ideas, services, or connections. Every company has room for a person who has a definite plan of action which is to the advantage of that company.
- Men who succeed reach decisions promptly, and change them, if at all, very slowly. Men who fail, reach decisions, if at all, very slowly and change them frequently and quickly.
- Genuine wisdom is usually conspicuous through modesty and silence.
- What of the man who has neither the time nor the inclination, to study failure in search of knowledge that may lead to success?
- Can you imagine yourself a millionaire?
Twelve things which constitute real riches:
- A positive mental attitude.
- Sound physical health.
- Harmony in human relations.
- Freedom from fear.
- The hope of future achievement.
- The capacity for applied faith.
- Willingness to share one’s blessings with others.
- To be engaged in a labor of love.
- An open mind on all subjects toward all people.
- Complete self-discipline.
- Wisdom with which to understand people.
- Financial security.
All achievement, all earned riches, have their beginning in an idea.
Chapter 1: Thoughts are Things
When a man really desires something so deeply, that he is willing to stake his entire future on a single turn of the wheel in order to get it, he is sure to win.
When one is truly ready for a thing, it puts in its appearance.
Opportunities have a sly habit of slipping in by the back door, and often comes disguised in the form of misfortune or temporary defeat.
So many people fail to recognize opportunity, perhaps this is why.
An intangible impulse of thought can be transmuted into material rewards by the application of known principles.
One of the most common causes of failure is the habit of quitting when one is overtaken by temporary defeat.
Before success comes in any man’s life, he is sure to meet with much temporary defeat and perhaps some failure.
When defeat overtakes a person, the easiest and most logical thing to do is to quit, that is what the majority of people do.
The greatest success comes just one step beyond the point where defeat overtakes you.
What of the man who has neither the time nor the inclination, to study failure in search of knowledge that may lead to success? Where and how can he learn the art of converting defeat into stepping stones for an opportunity?
One sound idea is all one needs to achieve success.
When riches begin to come, they come so quickly and in such great abundance, that one wonders where they have been hiding during all of those lean years.
Riches begin with a state of mind, with definiteness of purpose, with little or no hard work.
As soon as you master the principles of this philosophy, and begin to follow the instructions for applying those principles, your financial status will begin to improve, and everything you touch will begin to transmute itself into an asset for your benefit.
One of the main weaknesses of mankind is the average person’s familiarity with the word “impossible.”
Success comes to those who become success conscious. Failure comes to those who indifferently allow themselves to become failure conscious. The object of this book is to help all who seek it, to learn the art of changing their minds from failure consciousness to success consciousness.
Another weakness in too many people is the habit of measuring everything and everyone by their own impressions and beliefs.
We foolishly believe that our own limitations are the proper measure of limitations.
We have the power to control our thoughts. Our brains become magnetized with the dominating thoughts which we hold in our minds. By means with which no man is familiar, these magnets attract to us the forces, the people, the circumstances of life which harmonize with the nature of our dominating thoughts.
Chapter 2: Desire
The starting point of all achievement, the first step toward riches.
The burning desire to win is essential to success.
Wishing will not bring riches.
Desiring riches with a state of mind that becomes an obsession, then planning definite ways and means to acquire riches, and backing those plans with persistence which does not recognize failure, will bring riches.
Six Definite Practical Steps to Transmute Desire into its Financial Equivalent
- Fix in your mind the exact amount of money you desire.
- Determine exactly what you intend to give in return for the money you desire.
- Establish a definite date when you intend to possess the money you desire.
- Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire, and begin at once, whether you are ready or not, to put this plan into action.
- Write out a clear, concise statement of the amount of money you intend to acquire, name the time limit for its acquisition, state what you intend to give in return for the money, and describe clearly the plan through which you intend to accumulate it.
- Read your written statement aloud, twice daily, once just before retiring at night and once after arising in the morning. As you read, see and feel and believe yourself already in possession of the money.
Can you imagine yourself a millionaire?
If you do not see great riches in your imagination, you will never see them in your bank balance.
Accumulation of money cannot be left to chance, good fortune, and luck. All who have accumulated great fortunes first did a certain amount of dreaming, hoping, wishing, desiring, and planning, before they acquired money.
You can never have riches in great quantities unless you can work yourself into a white heat of desire for money and actually believe you will possess it.
If you do not see great riches in your imagination, you will never see them in your bank balance.
The Power of Great Dreams
This changing world is demanding new ideas, new ways of doing things, new leaders, new inventions, new methods of teaching, new methods of marketing, new books, new literature, new features, new ideas for moving pictures.
One quality, which one must possess in order to win, is definiteness of purpose.
Every failure brings with it the seed of an equivalent success.
I had to succeed because I finally ran out of things that wouldn’t work. -Thomas Edison
The world is filled with an abundance of opportunity which the dreamers of the past never knew.
How to get dreams off the launching pad.
A burning desire to be and to do is the starting point from which the dreamer must take off. Dreams are not born of indifference, laziness, or lack of ambition.
All who succeed in life get off to a bad start and pass through many heartbreaking struggles before they arrive. The turning point in the lives of those who succeed usually comes at the moment of some crisis through which they are introduced to their other-selves.
There is a difference between wishing for a thing and being ready to receive it. No one is ready for a thing until they believe they can acquire it. The state of mind must be belief, not mere hope or wish.
No more effort is required to aim high in life, to demand abundance and prosperity, than is required to accept misery and poverty.
Chapter 3: Faith
Visualization of, and belief in, attainment of desire. The second step toward riches.
The burning desire to win is essential to success.
Faith is a state of mind which may be induced or created by affirmation, or repeated instructions to the subconscious mind, through the principle of autosuggestion.
Any impulse of thought which is repeatedly passed on to the subconscious mind is finally accepted and acted upon by the subconscious mind. Which proceeds to translate that impulse into its physical equivalent by the most practical procedure available.
Your belief or faith is the element that determines the action of your subconscious mind.
Conduct yourself as if you were already in possession of the material thing which you are demanding when you call upon your subconscious mind.
A mind dominated by positive emotions becomes a favorable abode for the state of mind known as faith. A mind so dominated may, at will, give the subconscious mind instructions, which it will accept and act upon immediately.
Faith is the starting point of all accumulation of riches, faith is the basis of all miracles and all mysteries which cannot be analyzed by the rules of science, faith is the only known antidote for failure. Faith is the element, which when mixed with prayer, gives one direct communication with infinite intelligence. Faith is the element that transforms the ordinary vibration of thought, created by the finite mind of man, into the spiritual equivalent.
Every man is what he is because of the dominating thoughts which he permits to occupy his mind.
Thoughts that are mixed with any of the feelings of emotions, constitute a magnetic force that attracts other similar or related thoughts.
- I know that I have the ability to achieve the object of my definite purpose in life, therefore I demand of myself persistent continuous action toward its attainment, and I here and now promise to render such action.
- I realize the dominating thoughts of my mind will eventually reproduce themselves in outward physical action, and gradually transform themselves into physical reality. Therefore, I will concentrate my thoughts for 30 minutes daily upon the task of thinking of the person I intend to become. Thereby creating in my mind a clear mental picture.
- I know through the principle of autosuggestion, any desire that I persistently hold in my mind will eventually seek expression through some practical means of attaining the object back of it. Therefore I will devote 10 minutes daily to demanding of myself the development of self-confidence.
- I have clearly written down a description of my definite chief aim in life, and I will never stop trying until I have developed sufficient self-confidence for its attainment.
- I fully realize that no wealth or position can long endure unless built upon truth and justice. Therefore I will engage in no transaction which does not benefit all whom it affects. I will succeed by attracting to myself the forces I wish to use, and the cooperation of other people. I will induce others to serve me because of my willingness to serve others. I will eliminate hatred, envy, jealousy, selfishness, and cynicism by developing a love for all humanity.
Those who go down in defeat, do so because of negative application of the principle of autosuggestion. The cause may be found in the fact that all impulses of thought have a tendency to clothe themselves in their physical equivalent.
What genius lies asleep in your brain! Somewhere in your makeup, there lies sleeping, the seed of achievement which if aroused and put into action, would carry you to heights such as you may never have hoped to attain.
Riches begin in the form of thought. The amount is limited only by the person in whose mind the thought is put into motion. Faith removes limitations.
Chapter 4: Autosuggestion
The medium for influencing the subconscious mind, the third step toward riches.
The burning desire to win is essential to success.
Autosuggestion is the agency of control, through which an individual may voluntarily feed his subconscious mind on thoughts of a creative nature.
Your subconscious mind recognizes and acts only upon thoughts that have been well mixed with emotion or feeling. Your thoughts or spoken words must be mixed with belief. The price of the ability to influence your subconscious mind is everlasting persistence in the application of these principles.
The subconscious mind takes any orders given to it in a spirit of absolute faith, and acts upon those orders, although the orders often have to be presented over and over again.
Do not wait for a definite plan, through which you intend to exchange services or merchandise in return for the money you are visualizing. Begin at once to see yourself in possession of the exact amount of money that you desire. Demanding and expecting that your subconscious mind will hand over the plan or plans that you need. Be on the alert for these plans, and when they appear, put them into action immediately.
See yourself rendering the service or delivering the merchandise you intend to give in return for this money.
Chapter 5: Specialized Knowledge
Personal experiences or observations, the fourth step toward riches.
There are two kinds of knowledge. One is general, the other is specialized. General knowledge, no matter how great in quantity or variety it may be, is of little use in the accumulation of money.
Knowledge will not attract money unless it is organized and intelligently directed through practical plans of action, to the definite end of accumulation of money.
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.
An educated man is one who has so developed the faculties of his mind, that he may acquire anything he wants or it’s equivalent, without violating the rights of others.
Edison knew nothing about the sciences, but he surrounded himself with who did understand the sciences, technical and educated men. He used their brains just as successfully as if he had the knowledge himself.
Every successful man makes use of other people’s knowledge, influence, and education under the mastermind principle.
Any man is educated who knows where to get knowledge when he needs it, and how to organize that knowledge into definite plans of action.
You will require specialized knowledge of the service, merchandise, or profession which you intend to offer in return for fortune.
The accumulation of great fortunes calls for power, and power is acquired through highly organized and intelligently directed, specialized knowledge.
Specialized knowledge is among the most plentiful, and the cheapest forms of service which may be had. See the payroll of any university for example.
It pays to know how to purchase knowledge.
- Decide the sort of specialized knowledge you require and the purpose for which it is needed.
- Have accurate information concerning dependable sources of knowledge.
- One’s own experience and education.
- Experience and education available through cooperation with others (mastermind alliance).
- Colleges and universities.
- Libraries, books, and periodicals [Google and the internet now].
- Night schools and home study schools.
As knowledge is acquired, it must be organized and put into use, for a definite purpose, through practical plans. Knowledge has no value except that which can be gained from its application toward some worthy end.
Successful people, in all callings, never stop acquiring specialized knowledge related to their major purpose, business, or profession.
Anyone who has the ambition to give up a part of his spare time to studying at home has in him those qualities which make for leadership.
We rise to high positions or remain at the bottom because of conditions we can control if we desire to control them.
The idea is capable of yielding an income far greater than the average doctor, lawyer, or engineer. There is no fixed price for sound ideas.
There is a universal demand and an ever-increasing opportunity for the person capable of helping men and women to sell their personal services advantageously.
Chapter 6: Imagination
The workshop of the mind, the fifth step toward riches.
Imagination functions in two forms:
- Synthetic imagination
- Creative imagination
One may arrange all concepts, ideas, or plans into new combinations. This faculty creates nothing, it works with the experience, education, and observation it is given. Synthetic imagination is used most by the inventor.
The creative imagination works automatically. The creative faculty becomes more alert in proportion to its development through use.
Desire is of no value until it has been transformed into its physical counterpart.
How to Make Practical Use of Imagination
Ideas are the beginning points of all fortunes.
Ideas are products of the imagination.
Riches, when they come in huge quantities, are never the result of hard work alone. Riches come in response to definite demands, based upon the application of definite principles, and not by chance or luck.
An idea is an impulse of thought that impels action by an appeal to the imagination.
There is no standard price on ideas. The creator of ideas makes his own price.
A creator of ideas should work with a seller of ideas to generate riches.
Ideas are intangible forces. They have more power than the physical brains that give birth to them.
Chapter 7: Organized Planning
The crystallization of desire into action, the sixth step toward riches.
Everything man creates or acquires begins in the form of desire.
How to build plans which will be practical:
- Ally yourself with a group of as many people as you may need for the creation and carrying out of your plan or plans for the accumulation of money. Making use of the mastermind principle.
- Before forming your mastermind alliance. Decide what advantages and benefits you may offer the individual members of your group in return for their cooperation.
- Arrange to meet with the members of your mastermind group at least twice a week, and more often if possible. Until you have jointly perfected the necessary plan or plans for the accumulation of money.
- Maintain perfect harmony between yourself and every member of your mastermind group.
Keep in mind these facts:
- You are engaged in an undertaking of major importance to you. To ensure success, you much have plans which are faultless.
- You must have the advantage of the experience, education, native ability, and imagination of other minds.
If the first plan you adopt does not work successfully, replace it with a new plan, and if this new plan fails to work, replace it with another plan until you find a plan which does work.
Millions of people go through life in misery and poverty because they lack a sound plan through which to accumulate a fortune.
Your achievement can be no greater than your plans are sound.
No follower of this philosophy can expect to build a fortune without experiencing some temporary defeat.
Intelligent planning is essential for success in any undertaking to accumulate riches.
Practically all the great fortunes began in the form of compensation for personal services or from the sale of ideas.
The difference in compensation for leaders and followers is vast. Decide in advance whether you will be a leader or a follower.
The man who cannot follow a leader intelligently cannot become an efficient leader.
Important Factors of Leadership
- Unwavering courage, based upon knowledge of self and of one’s occupation
- A keen sense of justice
- Definiteness of decision
- Definiteness of plans
- The habit of doing more than paid for (going the extra mile)
- A pleasing personality
- Sympathy and understanding
- Mastery of detail
- Willingness to assume full responsibility
Major Causes of Failure in Leadership
- Inability to organize details
- Unwillingness to render humble service
- The expectation of pay for what they know, instead of that which they do with what they know
- Fear of competition from followers
- Lack of imagination
- The emphasis of the authority of leadership
- The emphasis of the title
An efficient leader will greatly increase the efficiency of others.
The world has numerous opportunities for new leaders and a new brand of leadership.
A complete written statement of qualifications for a position should be submitted with a job application.
Information to be supplied in a written brief
- References (attach letters of recommendation if available)
- Photograph of yourself
- Apply for a specific position
- State your qualifications for the particular position
- Offer to go to work on probation
- Knowledge of your prospective employer’s business
How to get the exact position you desire:
- Decide exactly what kind of job you want. If the job doesn’t already exist, perhaps you can create it.
- Choose the company or individual for whom you wish to work.
- Study your prospective employer as to policies, personnel, chances of advancement.
- By analysis of yourself, and your talents and capabilities, figure out what you can offer and plan ways and means of giving advantages, services, developments, and ideas that you believe you can successfully deliver.
- Forget about a job, forget whether or not there is an opening, concentrate on what you can give.
- Once you have your plan in mind, arrange with an experienced writer, put it on paper in neat form, and in full detail.
- Present it to the proper person with authority, and they will do the rest.
Every company is looking for people who can give something of value, whether it be ideas, services, or connections. Every company has room for a person who has a definite plan of action which is to the advantage of that company.
To market personal services effectively, one must adopt and follow the QQS formula.
Quality + Quantity + Spirit of Cooperation = Perfect Salesmanship of Service
What does this formula mean?
- Quality of service means the habit of performing every detail in connection with your position, in the most efficient manner possible, with the object of greater efficiency always in mind.
- Quantity of service means the habit of rendering all the service of which you are capable at all times, with the purpose of increasing the amount of service rendered as increasing skill is developed through practice and experience.
- Spirit of service means the habit of agreeable, harmonious conduct which will induce cooperation from associates and coworkers.
The principle of going the extra mile is defined as. Rendering more service and better service than you are paid to render, doing it all the time, and doing it with a pleasing, positive mental attitude.
Some Benefits of Going the Extra Mile
- It places the law of increasing returns squarely behind you.
- It brings one to the favorable attention of those who can and do provide opportunities.
- It permits one to become indispensable in many different human relationships and therefore enables one to command more than average compensation.
- It leads to mental growth and physical perfection in various forms of service, thereby developing greater ability and skill in one’s chosen vocation.
- It protects one against the loss of employment and places on in a position to chose his own job and working conditions.
- It enables one to profit by the law of contrast because the majority of people do not practice the habit of going the extra mile, the majority of people do not even go the first mile.
- It leads to the development of a positive, pleasing, personal attitude.
- It tends to develop a keen, alert imagination, as it is a habit that keeps one continuously seeking new and more efficient ways of rendering service.
- It serves to develop self-reliance.
- It serves to build the confidence of others in your integrity.
- It is the only logical reason to justify one asking for a promotion and more wages.
Nothing can be successfully substituted for pleasing conduct.
The capital value of your services.
Competent brains, if effectively marketed, represent a much more desirable form of capital than that which is required to conduct a business dealing in commodities.
Brains are a form of capital that cannot be permanently depreciated through depressions, nor can this form of capital be stolen or spent.
Money which is essential for the conduct of business is as worthless as a sand dune until it has been mixed with efficient brains.
31 Major Reasons for Failure
As you go through the list, check yourself point by point to discover how many of these causes of failure stand between you and success.
- Unfavorable hereditary background.
- Lack of a well-defined purpose in life.
- Lack of ambition to aim above mediocrity.
- Insufficient education.
- Lack of self-discipline.
- Ill health.
- Unfavorable environmental influences during childhood.
- Lack of persistence.
- Negative personality.
- Lack of controlled sexual urge.
- Uncontrolled desire to get something for nothing.
- Lack of a well-defined power of decision.
- One or more of the six basic fears. (listed in a later chapter)
- Wrong selection of a mate in marriage.
- Wrong selection of associates in business.
- Superstition and prejudice.
- Wrong selection of a vocation.
- Lack of concentration of effort.
- A habit of indiscriminate spending.
- Lack of enthusiasm.
- Intemperance. (connected with eating, drinking, and sexual activity)
- Inability to cooperate with others.
- Possession of power that was not acquired through self-effort.
- Intentional dishonesty.
- Egotism and vanity.
- Guessing instead of thinking.
- Lack of capital.
- Any particular cause of failure from which you have suffered and is not on this list.
Men are paid not merely for what they know, but for what they do with what they know.
Before you can control conditions, you must first control yourself.
Men who succeed reach decisions promptly, and change them, if at all, very slowly. Men who fail, reach decisions, if at all, very slowly and change them frequently and quickly.
Indecision and procrastination are twin brothers.
People who succeed keep open minds and are afraid of nothing.
Everyone wants more, but it is something entirely different to be worth more.
Annual self-analysis is essential in the effective marketing of personal services.
Your yearly analysis should have a decrease in faults and an increase in virtues.
The annual analysis will disclose whether advancement has been made, and if so, how much.
Take this inventory by asking yourself the following questions.
Self-Analysis Questionnaire for Personal Inventory
- Have I attained the goal which I established as my objective for this year?
- Have I delivered service of the best possible quality of which I was capable? Or could I have improved any part of this service?
- Have I delivered service in the greatest possible quantity of which I was capable?
- Has the spirit of my conduct been harmonious and cooperative at all times?
- Have I permitted the habit of procrastination to decrease my efficiency, and if so, to what extent?
- Have I improved my personality, and if so, in what ways?
- Have I been persistent in following my plans through to completion?
- Have I reached decisions promptly and definitely on all occasions?
- Have I permitted any one or more of the six basic fears to decrease my efficiency?
- Have I been either over-cautious or under-cautious?
- Has my relationship with my associates in work been pleasant, or unpleasant? If it has been unpleasant, has the fault been partly or wholly mine?
- Have I dissipated any of my energy through a lack of concentration of effort?
- Have I been open-minded and tolerant in connection with all subjects?
- In what way have I improved my ability to render service?
- Have I been intemperate in any of my habits?
- Have I expressed, either openly or secretly, any form of egotism?
- Has my conduct toward my associates been such that it has induced them to respect me?
- Have my opinions and decisions been based upon guesswork or accuracy of analysis and thought?
- Have I followed the habit of budgeting my time, my expenses, and my income? Have I been conservative in these budgets?
- How much time have I devoted to unprofitable effort which I might have used to better advantage?
- How may I re-budget my time and change my habits so I will be more efficient during the coming year?
- Have I been guilty of any conduct which was not approved by my conscience?
- In what ways have I rendered more service and better service than I was paid to render?
- Have I been unfair to anyone, and if so, in what way?
- If I had been the purchaser of my own services for the year, would I be satisfied with my purchase?
- Am I in the right vocation, and if not, why not?
- Has the purchaser of my services been satisfied with the services I have rendered, and if not, why not?
- What is my present rating on the fundamental principles of success?
Chapter 8: Decision
The mastery of procrastination, the seventh step toward riches.
It is characteristic of people who have little knowledge to try to give the impression that they have much knowledge. Such people generally do much talking and too little listening.
Every time you open your mouth in front of a person who has an abundance of knowledge, you display your exact stock of knowledge or your lack of knowledge.
Genuine wisdom is usually conspicuous through modesty and silence.
The value of decisions depends upon the courage required to render them.
98 of 100 people work for wages today, are in the positions they hold because they lacked the definiteness of decision to plan a definite position and the knowledge of how to choose an employer.
Chapter 9: Persistence
The sustained effort necessary to induce faith, the eighth step toward riches.
Fortunes gravitate to men whose minds have been prepared to attract them.
Are you money-conscious or poverty-conscious?
Those who have cultivated the habit of persistence seem to enjoy insurance against failure.
Knowing what one wants is the first, and perhaps the most important step, towards the development of persistence.
Causes of Persistence
- Definiteness of purpose
- Definiteness of plans
- Accurate knowledge
Study this list carefully and rate yourself against it.
Weaknesses which must be mastered by all who will accumulate riches
- Failure to recognize and to define clearly exactly what one wants
- Lack of interest in acquiring specialized knowledge
- The habit of relying on alibis instead of creating definite plans for the solution of problems
- The habit of blaming others for one’s mistakes, and accepting unfavorable circumstances as being unavoidable
- Weakness of desire
- Willingness, even eagerness, to quit at the first sign of defeat
- Lack of organized plans, placed in writing where they may be analyzed
- The habit of neglecting to move on ideas, or to grasp opportunity when it presents itself
- Wishing instead of willing
- The habit of compromising with poverty instead of aiming at riches
- Searching for all the shortcuts to riches, trying to get without giving a fair equivalent
- Fear of criticism
The time to nurse an idea is at the time of its birth.
How to Develop Persistence
- A definite purpose backed by burning desire for its fulfillment
- A definite plan expressed in continuous action
- A mind closed tightly against all negative and discouraging influences, including negative suggestions of friends, relatives, and acquaintances
- A friendly alliance with one or more persons who will encourage one to follow-through with both plan and purpose
Chapter 10: The Power of the Mastermind
The driving force, the ninth step toward riches.
Power is essential for success the accumulation of money.
Power may be defined as organized and intelligently directed knowledge.
Three Major Sources of Knowledge
- Infinite intelligence
- Accumulated experience
(the accumulated experience of man is available through books and education)
- Experiment and research
Author’s definition of the mastermind: coordination of knowledge and effort, in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people for the attainment of a definite purpose.
How to Multiply Your Brain Power
A group of brains, coordinated or connected in a spirit of harmony, will provide more thought energy than a single brain. Just as a group of electric batteries will provide more energy than a single battery,
When a group of individual brains are coordinated and function in harmony, the increased energy created through that alliance becomes available to every individual brain in the group.
Chapter 11: The Mystery of Sex Transmutation
The tenth step toward riches.
Transmute means the changing or transferring of one form of energy into another.
The constructive potentialities of the emotion of sex
- The perpetuation of mankind
- The maintenance of health
- The transformation of mediocrity into genius through transmutation
Sex transmutation means the switching of the mind from thoughts of physical expression to thoughts of some other nature.
The human mind responds to stimuli through which it may be keyed up to high rates of vibration, known as enthusiasm, creative imagination, intense desire, etc.
The stimuli to which the mind responds most freely are
- The desire for sex expression
- A burning desire for fame, power, or financial gain (money)
- Friendship, between either the same sex, or of the opposite sex
- A mastermind alliance based on the harmony of two or more people who ally themselves for spiritual or temporal advancement
- Mutual suffering (such as experienced by people who are persecuted)
- Narcotics and alcohol
Eight of these stimuli are natural and constructive, two are destructive.
A genius is 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 the ordinary rate of thought.
The person who thinks will want to ask some questions concerning this definition of genius.
- How may one communicate with sources of knowledge which are not available through the ordinary rate of vibration of thought?
- Are there known sources of knowledge that are available only to geniuses, and if so, what are these sources, and exactly how may they be reached?
The faculty of creative imagination is one that the majority of people never use during an entire lifetime, and if used at all, it usually happens by mere accident. A relatively small number of people use, with deliberation and purpose of forethought, the faculty of creative imagination.
Those who use this faculty voluntarily, and with an understanding of its functions, are geniuses.
The faculty of creative imagination is the direct link between the finite mind of man and Infinite Intelligence.
Ideas or concepts that flash into one’s mind come from one or more of the following sources:
- Infinite Intelligence
- One’s subconscious mind, wherein is stored every sense impression and thought impulse which ever reached the brain through any of the five senses
- From the mind of some other person who has just released the thought, or picture of the idea or concept, through conscious thought, or
- From the other person’s subconscious storehouse. There are no other known sources from which “inspired” ideas or “hunches” may be received.
When brain activity has been stimulated, through one or more of the ten mind stimulants, it has the effect of lifting the individual far above the horizon of ordinary thought and permits him to envision distance, scope, and quality of thoughts not available on the lower plane, such as that occupied while one is engaged in the solution of the problems of business and professional routine.
The creative faculty becomes more alert and receptive to vibrations, originating
outside the individual’s subconscious mind, the more this faculty is used. This faculty can be cultivated and developed only through use.
The scientific inventor, or “genius,” begins an invention by organizing and combining the known ideas, or principles accumulated through experience, through the synthetic faculty (the reasoning faculty). If he finds this accumulated knowledge to be insufficient for the completion of his invention, he then draws upon the sources of knowledge available to him through his creative faculty. The method by which he does this varies with the individual, but this is the sum and substance of his procedure:
- He stimulates his mind so that it vibrates on a higher than average plane, using one or more of the ten mind stimulants or some other stimulant of his choice.
- He concentrates upon the known factors (the finished part) of his invention, and creates in his mind a perfect picture of unknown factors (the unfinished part), of his invention. He holds this picture in mind until it has been taken over by the subconscious mind, then relaxes by clearing his mind of all thought, and waits for his answer to “flash” into his mind.
Far from becoming geniuses, because of great sex desires, the majority of men lower themselves, through misunderstanding and misuse of this great force, to the status of the lower animals.
Why Men Seldom Succeed Before Forty
Men who succeed in an outstanding way, seldom do so before the age of forty, and more often they do not strike their real pace until they are well beyond the age of fifty.
The major reason why the majority of men who succeed do not begin to do so before the age of forty to fifty is their tendency to dissipate their energies through over-indulgence in the physical expression of the emotion of sex.
A mind stimulant is any influence which will either temporarily, or permanently,
increase the vibrations of thought.
Through cultivation and understanding, this vital force (personal magnetism/sex energy) may be drawn upon and used to great advantage in the relationships between people. This energy may be communicated to others through the following media:
- The hand-shake. The touch of the hand indicates, instantly, the presence of magnetism, or the lack of it.
- The tone of voice.
- Posture and carriage of the body. Highly sexed people move briskly, and with grace and ease.
- The vibrations of thought.
- Body adornment. People who are highly sexed are usually very careful about their personal appearance. They usually select clothing of a style becoming to their personality, physique, complexion, etc.
Seldom does an individual enter upon highly creative effort in any field of endeavor before the age of forty. The average man reaches the period of his greatest capacity to create between forty and sixty.
The years between forty and fifty are, as a rule, the most fruitful. A man should approach this age, not with fear and trembling, but with hope and eager anticipation.
Sex, alone, is a mighty urge to action, but its forces are like a cyclone, they are often uncontrollable. When the emotion of love begins to mix itself with the emotion of sex, the result is a calmness of purpose, poise, the accuracy of judgment, and balance.
Chapter 12: The Subconscious Mind
The connecting link, the eleventh step toward riches.
The subconscious mind draws upon the forces of infinite intelligence for the power with which it voluntarily transmutes one’s desires into their physical equivalent.
All negative thoughts serve as stimuli to your subconscious mind unless you master them and give your mind more desireable food to feed on.
It is not more knowledge, education, and facts that we need. What we need is to better use what we already have.
This chapter gives lists of the major positive and negative emotions.
Positive and negative emotions cannot occupy the mind at the same time. One, or the other, must dominate. It is your responsibility to make sure that positive emotions are the dominating force of your mind. Form the habit of applying and using positive emotions. Eventually, they will dominate your mind so completely that the negatives cannot enter it.
Chapter 13: The Brain
A broadcasting and receiving station for thought, the twelfth step toward riches.
I didn’t take any notes on this section.
Chapter 14: The Sixth Sense
The door to the temple of wisdom, the thirteenth step toward riches.
The author created a mastermind group in his imagination filled with knowledgeable people from the past such as Benjamin Franklin, Napoleon, etc. He would imagine asking them for advice and how they would respond.
Chapter 15: The Six Ghosts of Fear
Three enemies you must clear out are indecision, doubt, and fear. The sixth sense will never function while any of these negative emotions remain in your mind.
The six basic fears are:
- The fear of poverty
- The fear of criticism
- The fear of ill health
- The fear of loss of the love of someone
- The fear of old age
- The fear of death
If you demand riches, determine what form, and how much will be required to satisfy you. You know the road that leads to riches. You have been given a road map which, if followed, will keep you on that road. If you neglect to start or stop before you arrive, no one will be to blame but you.
The fear of poverty is, without doubt, the most destructive of the six basic fears.
Symptoms of the fear of poverty:
- Indifference (commonly expressed through lack of ambition; willingness to tolerate poverty; acceptance of whatever compensation life may offer without protest; mental and physical laziness; lack of initiative, imagination, enthusiasm and self-control)
- Expecting poverty instead of demanding riches
The Fear of Criticism
Employers who understand human nature, get the best there is in men, not by criticism, but by constructive suggestion. Parents may accomplish the same results with their children. Criticism will plant FEAR in the human heart, or resentment, but it will not build love or affection.
Symptoms of the fear of criticism:
- Lack of poise
- Personality (Lacking in the firmness of decision, personal charm, and ability to express opinions definitely. The habit of side-stepping issues instead of meeting them squarely.)
- Inferiority complex
- Lack of initiative
- Lack of ambition
The person who gives expression, by word of mouth, to negative or destructive thoughts is practically certain to experience the results of those words in the form of a destructive “kick-back.”
First of all, and perhaps most important to be remembered, the person who releases thoughts of a destructive nature, must suffer damage through the breaking down of the faculty of creative imagination.
Secondly, the presence in the mind of any destructive emotion develops a negative personality which repels people, and often converts them into antagonists.
The third source of damage to the person who entertains or releases negative thoughts is that thought-impulses is not only damaging to others, but they embed themselves in the subconscious mind of the person releasing them and there become a part of his character.
The Seventh Basic Evil
The seventh basic evil is susceptibility to negative influences.
Men who accumulate great riches always protect themselves against this evil. The poverty-stricken never do.
Recognize that negative influences often work on you through your subconscious mind, therefore they are difficult to detect, and keep your mind closed against all people who depress or discourage you in any way.
The end of this chapter contains a list of self-analysis questions.
If you fail to control your own mind, you may be sure you will control nothing else.
People who do not succeed have one distinguishing trait in common. They know all the reasons for failure and have what they believe to be air-tight alibis to explain away their own lack of achievement.
This section contains a list of 57 excuses or alibis people use to explain a lack of achievement.
The first and best victory is to conquer self. To be conquered by self is, of all things, the most shameful and vile.
Related Book Summaries
- Money and Finance Book Summaries
- The Wisdom of Success Book Summary
- The Richest Man in Babylon Book Summary
Hope you enjoyed this and got value from my notes.
This is the 76th book read in my 2019 reading list.
Here is a list of my book summaries.
8 thoughts on “Think and Grow Rich Summary”
Great summary! I am reading through Think and Grow Rich once again and I wanted to see what others thought of it. I love your favorite quotes, some of those were mine as well!
Thank you, I’m glad you like them!
Thank you Jeremy for the very detailed book summary. I agree with most of your views about the book. I’ve read the book several times. Actually, each time I read it, I learn something new.
Hi Isaac, you’re welcome! Thank you for visiting and reading the summary. I looked over the link you left and your summary looks good. Nice work!
Thank you so much for these notes and summary. This helped me lot.
Kaiwalya, I’m glad to hear that this helped you. Thank you for taking the time to comment!
I have read think and grow rich but I agree in the in-depth study of the book. There is so much there. I am using your review as a study guide as I go through the book again.
Example on what page is the 12 riches you speak of in the introduction?
Think of it this way. You are honouring Napoleon hill by keeping his works alive
I was about to order this book on Amazon but then I came across this post.