Think and Grow Rich is a book that goes far beyond the concept of money. If you want to amass personal fortunes fast then you can just stop reading right now.
The book, written in 1937 right in the middle of the Great Depression, is among the 10 best selling self-help books of all time. It is based on Hill's earlier work The Law of Success, said to be the result of more than twenty years of study of millionaires to find out what made them the men that they were. Hill studied their habits and drew some 16 "laws" to be applied to obtain success. Think and Grow Rich condenses them, providing the reader with 13 steps-as-chapters the author believes are necessary in order to be successful.
The 13 steps are:
1. Desire: The Turning Point of All Achievement
2. Faith: Visualizing and Believing in the Attainment of Desire
3. Auto-Suggestion: The Medium for Influencing the Subconscious Mind
4. Specialized Knowledge: Personal Experiences or Observations
5. Imagination: The Workshop of the Mind
6. Organized Planning: The Crystallization of Desire into Action
7. Decision: The Mastery of Procrastination
8. Persistence: The Sustained Effort Necessary to Induce Faith
9. Power of the Master Mind: The Driving Force
10. The Mystery of Sex Transmutation
11. The Subconscious Mind: The Connecting Link
12. The Brain: A Broadcasting and Receiving Station for Thought
13.The Sixth Sense: The Door to the Temple of Wisdom
The main theme of the book, as evident from the name, is "Thinking" and its essence is Hill’s famous statement: “Everything your mind can conceive, you can achieve”.
But wishing for things is very different from actually doing the work of creating them and Hill explains that distinction in many ways and places in the book. So, while he gives you the tools he makes it very clear that you must systematically and intentionally put them to use yourself in order to benefit from them. In his opinion, it’s a matter of keeping your eye on the prize, not a matter of just dreaming about it.
More than 80 years since its initial publication, Think and Grow Rich is still a treasure trove of knowledge for anyone who wants to become a better businessperson or gain success in life in general.
"When you begin to think and grow rich, you will observe that riches begin with a state of mind, with definiteness of purpose, with little or no hard work. You, and every other person, ought to be interested in knowing how to acquire that state of mind which will attract riches… Observe very closely, 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. Impossible? Not at all!”
-Napoleon Hill, Think and Grow Rich
Napoleon Hill was born in 1883 in Virginia and had a long and successful career as a lecturer, author, and consultant to business leaders. He entered law school, but withdrew for financial reasons.
He landed a part-time job with Bob Taylor’s Magazine that offered advice on achieving power and wealth. He interviewed Andrew Carnegie in 1908, a steel magnate and one of the most powerful men in the world.
Carnegie, gave Hill a proposal to invest his time and efforts in studying wealthy people to understand their success formula- which he believed was the same for all achievers- without payment. This challenge took Hill because he was born to poverty and got nothing to lose.
Hill interviewed the most famous people of the time, including Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, George Eastman, Henry Ford, Elmer Gates, John D. Rockefeller, Charles M. Schwab, F.W. Woolworth, Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson.
He died in November 1970 but his philosophy is still sought after by many today, assisting, motivating and reshaping the lives of generations.