How to Achieve Higher Levels of Success and Wealth … Without Actually Working Harder
Coming out of an era of Depression and despair, Napoleon Hill wrote a book called Think and Grow Rich.
Written in 1937, it’s a book that’s gone through multiple updates since, but the premise at its core is as relevant today as it was 83 years ago. So are the common sense, doable steps and processes it outlines.
The secret in this one book has formed the foundation for multiple success systems, platforms, and multimillion-dollar careers — including direct-response copywriting’s one and only Dan Kennedy — who refers to this book as “How to Think to Grow Rich.”
For me, reading this book was a pure positive energy download.
By the time I’d finished reading the prefaces, I was so excited I could hardly sit still. By the time I turned the last page, I felt like I’d already conquered the world, and all I had to do was watch that power grow into a reality.
Coming from someone who regularly spends 8-15 hours a day working … the revelations of mindset, “impossible” goal-setting, practical faith, and scientific systems to resetting the world as I once knew it was nothing short of revolutionary.
See Immediate Growth and Results
There’ll always be a certain “woo-woo” element in any theory that deals with ephemeral ideas — like the power of positive thinking, faith results, and mind over matter — tends to smack of the untrustworthy.
But when you can take any theory and immediately start seeing the results promised, it does a lot to turn a skeptic (like me) into a believer.
Ever since reading Think and Grow Rich from start to finish and practicing the intangible systems in it, I’ve seen some very tangible personal growth:
- I have more self-confidence
- I have more energy
- I'm going after bigger clients with "weirder, wilder, bolder" ideas
- I understand my hang-ups and hesitations
- I'm not afraid of failure
These seemingly small and internal changes have completely overhauled my external business in terms of my relationships with my clients, my consistency and reliability as a copywriter, and my ability to market myself:
- I've made new connections, some with industry greats and some with potentially big clients
- I've landed two projects that I wouldn't have without the determination and self-confidence that encouraged me to follow-up like a pesky mosquito
- I have more (and bigger) projects in the works that I’m cheerfully following up with
- When I have experienced rejection, it barely phases me
- I've pitched bigger projects more consistently
- I have more ideas and more options to pitch them
And those are only the early results!
I finished Think and Grow Rich during the first weeks of February and within two months, I’d achieved all these results (not counting the energy and momentum that I’ve been building up ever since — even in spite of the pandemic!).
How can you achieve similar results?
The first thing I recommend you can do is read Think and Grow Rich for yourself. This book is especially helpful if you fall into one of two categories:
1. Complete Newbie
Some of the steps from the book that I wish that I could’ve learned from the book in the first few months of my career as a freelance copywriter — or even in the first few months of my life! — include:
It’s an understated emotion with huge impact. Yet without that stated desire creating a need deep in your soul, you’ll never get off your current plateau.
The Practice of Faith
Faith is one of those overused words — but in this book, you’ll learn how not to just “hope really, really hard,” but practice positive, simple steps that will build your faith in success that feels out of your reach. Faith feeds courage, courage feeds action, and action feeds results!
Making decisive, scary decisions is the fastest, and best way, to pushing past whatever limits you’ve put on yourself, and therefore on your success.
The Six Basic Fears
I for one have never thought of myself as a fearful person — but after reading about the six basic fears that are intrinsic to every human being (for very practical reasons), I came to understand how they lead to hesitation, missed opportunities, and costing money and your ultimate success.
2. Stuck in the Middle
This is where I was at when I laid my hands on Think and Grow Rich, and where you might find yourself too. You may feel your energy and work hours are maxed out, and your enthusiasm is waning. But a few steps in particular from the book stood out to me for overcoming any of these feelings.
Having organized, specific knowledge is powerful. Without it, you won’t be able to market yourself at “success prices.” We’ve all struggled to pick and define the right niche, and to market our skills in those areas effectively. But having identified your “special” knowledge, then your professional profile becomes something outstanding.
There are a lot of steps in this book, 13 total, that are vital to success. But this is the one I struggled with the most — not just decision, not just desire, not just a plan — but organized, specific plans that feed specific, organized goals. Having a basic understanding of this one principle will change your outlook on business and the achievability of new levels of success more than anything.
The month I dedicated to reading, understanding, and utilizing the success secrets in Think and Grow Rich has been one of the most profitable months of my life to date.
And as I look forward to the future, I know that it’ll only grow more useful and more valuable as I use those steps and the momentum I’m building for my future. I think the same thing could happen for you as well.
So, the next time you find yourself with spare time, pick up a copy of Think and Grow Rich and start reading. Warning: You might have a hard time putting it down.
And if you’re building a Summer Reading List, check out these additional resources:
At Least 10 Books Every Copywriter Should Read — Twice by John Forde
If you want to be a great writer, it helps to read the right books. You can listen in on some lively discussions of more classics here: AWAI’s Great Books Club.
Have you already read Think and Grow Rich? Please share your impressions with us in the comments.
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Excellent article, Suzanna! And, yes, I agree... "Think and Grow Rich" is one of those books that's a must-read for anyone with a goal or dream who needs a little commonsense guidance along the way.
Elizabeth Blessing –
Suzanna, Great article and thoughts on Napoleon Hill's classic; I read it, or at least portions of it, every year.
Have you read 7 Habits of Highly Effective People? It's another classic that I read annually or at least bi-annually (and consult countless times throughout each year).
In fact, with the publication of the 40th Anniversary Edition last month, I've currently picked it up again, and WOW, the teaching in the opening chapter "Inside-Out" (and the entire book really) is so timely!
Tim Geiger –
Over the years, I've read Napoleon Hill's book three times. He promises all sorts of things if I can guess his secret. I've never managed to guess it, and reading the book was never worth the time wasted on reading it.
I could not get thru it. So much resistance. It’s as if I was trading my religious beliefs for these new ones. Has anyone else had this same experience? Yet every path I’ve chosen to redirect myself to keeps bringing me back to this book.
I have always been spiritual. So many things in that book have naturally happened for me, but reading it from a book has changed me from from leading from the heart to trying to lead from the mind to “make” things happen. It has thrown me thru a loop.
It is like a bell that has rung that you can’t unring. Does anyone have a different perspective for me that can perhaps shine a bright light on it?
Thank you all for commenting! Tim, I haven't read the 7 Habits book yet, but I'll add it to the list. I think I must have read articles based on it, and bits and pieces of it, but not the whole thing.
Elizabeth, thank you, as always.
Dear Monica - there's another book that I'm reading called "Psycho-Cybernetics" by Maxwell Maltz. It's a little more hands-on than "Think & Grow Rich" - maybe it would be the revelation you need!
Suzanna Fitzgerald –