Archives For Think and Grow Rich

Napoleon Hill in this chapter of Think and Grow Rich states that the sixth sense,

“… defies description but it probably is the medium of contact between the finite mind of man and Infinite Intelligence, making it a mixture of both mental and spiritual. The six sense is located in a portion of the subconscious mind and is referred to as ‘Creative Imagination.’”

The Six Sense is also considered as intuition which is defined as;

A natural ability or power that makes it possible to know something without any proof or evidence: a feeling that guides a person to act a certain way without fully understanding why.

The definition of intuition fits the way Napoleon Hill explains the six sense as “the ‘receiving set’ through which ideas, plans, and thoughts flash into the mind. The ‘flashes’ are sometimes called ‘hunches’ or ‘inspirations.’”

Although Mr. Hill points out that to fully understand the sixth sense, you need to master the other principles of the Think and Grow Rich philosophies and by meditation through mind development from within.

Napoleon’s six sense, or the method he used to tap into Infinite Intelligence was through his “Invisible Counselors.” Having interviewed and studied hundreds of successful people Napoleon had specific people he “Hero-worshipped” and added them as his Invisible Counselors. The nine men were; Ralph Waldo Emerson, Thomas Paine, Thomas Edison, Charles Darwin, Abraham Lincoln, Luther Burbank, Napoleon Bonaparte, Henry Ford and Andrew Carnegie. These nightly imaginary meetings that Mr. Hill had with his Invisible Counselors where to help him rebuild his character and to represent the composition of his Invisible Counselors.

Over time Mr. Hill’s nightly meetings became so realistic that his characters took on their own habits and personalities and eventually frightened Mr. Hill so much that he discontinued them. Eventually, as Mr. Hill states, Lincoln showed up at his bedside and told him;

“The world will soon need your services. It is about to undergo a period of chaos which will cause men and women to lose faith, and become panic stricken. Go ahead with your work and complete your philosophy. That is your mission in life. If you neglect it, for any cause whatsoever, you will be reduced to a primal state, and be compelled to retrace the cycles through which you have passed during thousands of years.”

Some people claim that they can see ghosts, but to actually see Abraham Lincoln and then get a specific message from him would make someone take notice or think they were absolutely crazy. After this event he started his nightly meetings again and was welcomed back into the fold with a toast made by Lincoln. He soon added more Invisible Counselors to total about 50 people ranging from Christ to Plato.

Napoleon Hill didn’t know how this six sense worked but he did believe it was caused by an organ located in the brain that could receive vibrations to tap into the Infinite Intelligence. This special organ also provides people with intuitions, insights and hunches. Thomas Edison used his six sense to develop his inventions, he listened to and followed through with his six senses.

Today the organ that some claim is responsible for the six sense if the pineal gland. The pineal gland is a small, rice-sized, pinecone-shaped endocrine organ that sits alone in the middle of the brain and at the same level as the eyes. The famous philosopher Descartes described the pineal gland as the “principal seat of the soul.” You’ve probably heard of this gland being the “third eye,” a mystical chakra point residing right in the middle of your eyebrows.

You would think that if we all have this organ why don’t we all have some type of “six sense?” Unfortunately most people’s pineal gland is calcified, mainly from fluoride. Fluoride accumulates in the pineal gland more than any other organ and as your pineal gland hardens, less melatonin is produced and regulation of your wake-sleep cycle gets disturbed. In addition to fluoride, halides like chlorine and bromine also accumulate and damage the pineal gland. Calcium supplements can also cause problems. Without enough vitamin D calcium does not become bioavailable and calcifies human tissue, including the pineal gland.

So how do we reawaken our six sense? Do we want to awaken our own six sense? Are individuals “six sense” their special gift? There are a number of reality television shows that focus on individuals six sense. Some people receive messages from individuals who are either alive or dead like Mr. Hill, some claim to be able to communicate with past relatives for other people and some can even see the future.

What if your six sense is seeing dead people like the little boy Cole Sear in the 1999 Bruce Willis movie “The Sixth Sense.” Would you want to be able to see dead people? I don’t know, I think I may pass, especially seeing demons, unless it comes with the ability to see angels like Doreen Virtue does.

When anything is unexplainable people try to figure out what’s really going on scientifically. One reason why some people may have a heightened sense of perception, or sixth sense, is that they may be able to use their sense of smell better. Harvard researchers have studied the human olfactory bulb which receives signals from odor sensors in the nose? One question is; Do humans have a working sixth sense and do invisible chemicals still affect our behavior on an unconscious level? Research has shown that pheromones can be used to enhance mood and sexual attractiveness at a subconscious level.

Being the complex workings of the mind, no one knows what the true capabilities that the mind has. Is the Star Wars “Jedi mind control” possible? Some spiritual masters say yes, because they’ve seen it done or can do it themselves.

Lolly Daskal wrote in her article, “Change: The Sixth Sense,” that your sixth sense is emotions. Your emotions are triggered by one or many of the other five senses, sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch. A leader’s ability to understand and read emotions and how they affect other people is essential. No one likes to work for an emotional leader. A rare leader is one that can not only control their own emotions but knows how to influence other people’s emotions, especially when implementing change.

So what is your sixth sense ability? I think everyone has some sort of ability, it was probably suppressed as we were growing up. Maybe those monsters in the closet where real!

What is the real gift that the Grand Overall Designer gave you, what is your sixth sense?

 

References;

Everything You Wanted to Know about the Pineal Gland: http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/everything-you-wanted-to-know-about-the-pineal-gland/

Third Eye – Pineal Gland: http://www.crystalinks.com/thirdeyepineal.html

Doreen Virtue: http://www.angeltherapy.com/

Your Sixth Sense: https://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/201207/your-sixth-sense

Sixth sense – Testing and Training: http://www.spiritualresearchfoundation.org/spiritual-research/sixth-sense/how-to-test-your-sixth-sense/

Scientists Find Evidence for A Sixth Sense in Humans: http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/1999/05.20/sixth.sense.html

The Brain
A Broadcasting and Receiving Station for Thought
The Twelfth Step Toward Riches

The brain is one of the last frontiers, it’s a universe in its own right and has more neuron connections than visible stars in the sky, yet strangely enough, less than our guts. We can all agree that the brain is an important organ that we need to protect because it’s important to our health and success, but why do we tend to abuse it so much.

“WHAT, I don’t abuse my brain!” you exclaim, but unfortunately we don’t even know what may be causing harm to our brains. There are over 14,000 man-made chemicals added to our food supply in the United States alone, and we are still unsure how it all affects our brains.

Besides the obvious causes of brain damage that include blows to the head, illegal and legal substance abuse, we need to think about the food we’re consuming that we believe to be safe. Recently over the holidays I overconsumed sweets to not only include a dozen or so miniature candy bars but also cookies and whatever else had sugar in it. Needless to say my blood sugar spiked and the following day I crashed. I thought I had a hangover but I don’t drink alcohol, so I thought what else could’ve caused me to feel like this, and it lead to sugar. My sweet tooth has been a problem for me for as long as I can remember and I’ve consciously avoided high fructose corn syrup in 2015, except for the holidays.

One of the top things we should always be concerned about is what we’re putting into our gas tank. We wouldn’t pour a cup of sugar into our cars gas tank, so why do we pour sugar into our body’s gas tank? Carolyn Gregoire in the Huffington Post article This is What Sugar Does to Your Brain, states that sugar can wreak havoc on your brain. If you’ve ever consumed more sugary foods then normal you may have experienced a sugar crash due to blood sugar levels peaking and then dropping. High blood sugar levels have been linked to brain inflammation and can impair memory and learning skills along with a possible link to depression and anxiety. High blood sugars also affect the production of insulin, which is needed to help strengthen synaptic connections between brain cells to help them communicate better.

We’ve all had those days when we just can’t seem to concentrate. And while there’s no magic pill to bring us back to the height of our cognitive powers, there are some foods that have been shown to improve brain function, protect against age-associated cognitive decline and encourage focus and clarity.  The article titled 12 Superfoods To Boost Your Brainpower, lists the top brain foods as;

  • Walnuts which have heart-healthy and anti-inflammatory nutrients which helps promote blood flow, which in turn allows for efficient delivery of oxygen to the brain.
  • Olive Oil is a great source of monounsaturated fats, which have been shown to actually slow brain aging.
  • Berries, especially blueberries and strawberries, were linked to a slower mental decline in areas like memory and focus.
  • Sardines and other fatty fish like salmon containing omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA are a well-known brain booster to improve focus and memory, and may lower the risk of dementia.
  • Coffee and other beverages containing caffeine, improves mental acuity. Coffee’s antioxidant richness helps maintain brain health and can actually stave off depression in women.
  • Spinach is rich in the antioxidant lutein, which is thought to help protect against cognitive decline.
  • Dark chocolate is healthy due to being rich in flavonoids, a class of antioxidant that helps to improve blood flow (and thus brain health) by regulating cholesterol and lowering blood pressure.
  • Avocados are full of monounsaturated fats that improve vascular health and blood flow.
  • Water is essential to stay hydrated, if you become dehydrated your brain tissue actually shrinks, impairing short-term memory, focus and decision making.
  • Wheat Germ is a rich vegetarian source of choline to produce the neurotransmitter acetylcholine which boosts memory. Eggs are another good choline source.
  • Beets are a good source of naturally-occurring nitrates, which help improve blood flow to the brain (and guys, it increases blood flow to other parts of the body).
  • Garlic may help stave off some forms of brain cancer. Investigators found that the organo-sulfur compounds in garlic actually worked to kill glioblastoma cells – a type of malignant tumor cell.

Meditation is another way we can keep our brain healthy and is linked to increased productivity and happiness. Forbes magazine published the article 7 Ways Meditation Can Actually Change The Brain which lists some of the benefits of meditation;

  • Meditation Helps Preserve the Aging Brain – People who’d been meditating for an average of 20 years had more grey matter volume throughout the brain.
  • Meditation Reduces Activity in the Brain’s “Me Center” -Mindfulness meditation decreases activity in the default mode network (DMN), the brain network responsible for mind-wandering and self-referential thoughts – a.k.a., “monkey mind.”
  • Its Effects Rival Antidepressants for Depression, Anxiety – Meditation is an active training of the mind to increase awareness and studies show that it may reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, and pain.
  • Meditation May Lead to Volume Changes in Key Areas of the Brain – Eight weeks of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) was found to increase cortical thickness in the hippocampus, which governs learning and memory, and in areas that play roles in emotion regulation and self-referential processing.
  • Improves Concentration and Attention – Just a couple of weeks of meditation training helped people’s focus and memory and raised their verbal reasoning section of the GRE scores by 16 percentile points.
  • Reduces Anxiety — and Social Anxiety – Research has also shown that mindfulness meditation, in contrast to attending to the breath only, can reduce anxiety and has also been shown to help people with social anxiety disorder.
  • Helps with Addiction – A growing number of studies has shown that meditation can be very effective in helping people recover from various types of addiction.
  • Short Meditation Breaks Can Help Kids in School – One district in San Francisco started a twice daily meditation program in some of its high-risk schools – and saw suspensions decrease, and GPAs and attendance increase.

Some products claim to be able to speed up the benefits of meditation through technology. One of the companies is Centerpointe which uses a sophisticated form of audio technology called holosync. Holosync increases synchronous neuro-electrical activity between the two hemispheres of the brain, and drives the nervous system to higher levels of functioning over time and improves learning ability, creativity, problem-solving, focus and concentration, memory, and intuition.

A different product for the more serious brain hackers is The BrainStimulator and uses Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) which is a form of neurostimulation (also known as neuromodulation). It was originally developed to help patients with brain injuries such as strokes, however tests on healthy adults demonstrated that tDCS can increase cognitive performance on a variety of tasks, depending on the area of the brain being stimulated. Scientific studies have shown that tDCS has the ability to enhance language and mathematical ability, attention span, problem solving, memory, and coordination. In addition, tDCS has also been documented as having impressive potential to treat depression, anxiety, PTSD, as well as chronic pain.

We can slowly reduce the ability for our brains to operate efficiently by not being aware of what we are consuming, not only through food but other environmental factors like electromagnetic fields (EMF). The article, Zapped: EMF Exposure and Your Brain states that EMFs are produced by electricity flowing through power lines, home wiring, appliances, mobile phones, and other electrical devices. You would expect your microwave, cell phone, and WiFi to be high EMF producers, but so are your fridge, hair dryer, vacuum cleaner, and blender.

EMFs create free radicals — unattached oxygen molecules that attack your cells much in the same way that oxygen causes metal to rust. Your brain uses a lot of oxygen which is why it’s very susceptible to free radical damage. Here are some of the results to the brain due to EMF exposure;

  • EMFs produce free radicals which can kill cells and even cause DNA damage.
  • EMFs have been shown to break the brain-blood barrier, allowing toxins and chemicals to enter the brain and seriously affect brain function.
  • Proteins are integral to brain cell structure and neurotransmitter formation and over 140 proteins in the brain are negatively impacted by EMF exposure. Neurotransmitters enable your brain cells to communicate with each other.
  • There may be a direct link between the electromagnetic fields created by power lines and all types of dementia including Alzheimer’s.
  • Cell phones are bad for adults but are much worse for children. Dr. Ronald B. Herberman testified before Congress that the rate of absorption is higher in children than adults because their brain tissues are more absorbent, their skulls are thinner, and their relative size is smaller. Shockingly, EMFs nearly went straight through the brain of a 5 year old and some experts believe there is a link between cell phone use by kids and ADD and ADHD.

There is a number of skeptics as to the affects EMF’s have on not only the brain but the whole body. As a precautionary measure limit your EMF exposures by taking action on a few common sense precautions;

  • Keep your phone as far away as you can when it’s turned on.
  • Turn it off when you can.
  • Invest in a mobile phone radiation protector.
  • Don’t sleep with your phone on and next to your head.
  • Keep computers and TVs out of the bedroom or shut off the power to them before sleeping.
  • Place your alarm clock three feet from your head and don’t use an electric blanket.

The brain is the one body organ that controls all of the other body organs, we all agree that without a healthy brain we are going to be unhealthy. Unfortunately some people take their brain for granted and consistently damage it, which could eventually lead to a life of illness and misery. It’s time to think about how you’re damaging your brain and what will be the ultimate outcome of the abuse.

Don’t let your comfortable habits today lead to an uncomfortable life tomorrow.

What daily habit can you implement today to better take care of your brain?

You never can tell what a thought will do
In bringing you hate or love –
For thoughts are things, and their airy wings
Are swifter than carrier doves.
They follow the law of the universe –
Each thing creates its kind,
And they speed O’er the track to bring you back
Whatever went out from your mind.

The true understanding of success starts with understanding the power of the subconscious mind. This is what separates the successful from the unsuccessful person.

One person believes they can be successful and the other person believes they can’t be successful.

WHAT!!!!!!

Why would someone think that they can’t be successful? They may want to be successful, they may complain about why they’re not successful and usually have a number of reasons why they’re not.

I think we can agree that we want to be successful, but if we struggle to find that success, what’s the roadblock?

WE ARE.

WHAT!!!!

Come on now, how can I be a roadblock to the success I want. Usually, it’s because of what we think. Sure we tell people we want to be successful but we secretly tell ourselves negative thoughts like;

I’ll start doing that tomorrow.
I just can’t work out in the morning.
No one will like me if I do that.
It takes to much money.
I’m not smart enough for that job or promotion.
I’ll always be overweight.
I’ve never been able to stop smoking.
I can’t leave my job to follow my passion.
I DON’T DESERVE TO BE SUCCESSFUL!

These negative thoughts program our subconscious to do what we think. It’s unfortunate that at times these thoughts originate in someone else’s mind and they tell us and in turn, we believe them.

If you believe you can achieve something you will. I know it’s not that easy. Real success is a struggle and you’ll run into obstacles along the way to test your willpower. We know that finding success isn’t easy, and even when you do find it it’s hard to keep.

Let’s put this in a new perspective. I’m sure we’ve all seen the movie or read the story about Aladdin and the Lamp. If you rub the lamp a genie comes out and gives you three wishes. But you need to be careful on how you word that wish because you may get something you say but not mean.

Our subconscious is like that Genie. We first need to find the lamp within our own self and learn how to shine it up. We need to learn how to believe that we can do something we want. Take the negative words out of your thoughts. If you tell yourself you can’t your internal genie is just following orders and is going to give you what you believe.

If you ask someone who has achieved success why they did what they did, I doubt they’ll say, “Because I didn’t think I could.” They may think that it’ll be hard, other people probably told them they couldn’t, but they truly believed that they could accomplish it.

No one thought that a person could run a mile under four minutes until someone did. The paradigm was broken and more people did after that.

A speaker and writer who explains how our paradigms shape us is Bob Proctor and you can watch his video on The Power of Your Subconscious. In Bob’s new book The ABC’s of Success he has a quote in the chapter titled “The Silent Switch” that helps us understand the power we have within us,“Thought is the silent switch that sets in motion man’s destiny.”Basically, we become what we think, just like James Allen laid out in his 1903 classic As a Man Thinketh and said;

Mind is the Master power that moulds and makes,
And Man is Mind, and evermore he takes
The tool of Thought, and, shaping what he wills,
Brings forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills: –
He thinks in secret and it comes to pass:
Environment is but his looking-glass.

If you haven’t had the opportunity to read this short classic I encourage everyone to pick up a copy and for the female readers you can get a different version, As a Woman Thinketh.

Maxwell Malts in his book Psycho-Cybernetics outlines the research he did on the power of the subconscious mind and how it affects your self-image and confidence. He explains the two principles of the subconscious mind. The first one is that the subconscious mind always says “yes” to everything the conscious mind tells it. The second principle states that the subconscious mind always moves in the direction in which the conscious mind points it. Basically what he’s telling us is;

If we think negative thoughts our subconscious is going to give us those negative outcomes. But if we think of positive thoughts, and act on them, we can have a better chance on positive outcomes.

Meditation is another form of tapping into the power of our subconscious mind. I like Amanda Palmer’s quote – “Meditation, especially for people who don’t know very much about it and think it’s this very hippy dippy thing, can really be powerful, terrifying even, as it lifts the rug up on your subconscious and the dust comes flying out.”

Some of us may think more logically and believe all this subconscious stuff is just mystical thinking, think and you shall receive is just wishful thinking, right? But there’s years of research into the value of positive thinking and praying.

“If the Holy Spirit can take over the subconscious with our consent and cooperation, then we have almighty Power working at the basis of our lives, then we can do anything we ought to do, go anywhere we ought to go, and be anything we ought to be.”
~ E. Stanley Jones

Yes praying. This is where science and beliefs intersect. In Dr. Joseph Murphy’s book “The Power of Your Subconscious Mind” he claims that praying will activate the subconscious mind. Most people roaming the earth believe in their own version of G.O.D. (Grand Overall Designer) and pray to the belief that we’ll have a good afterlife. In other words, we’ll be accepted into the kingdom after we leave this physical presence we know as being human. Different beliefs, or religions have their own version of the afterlife, or more commonly known as Heaven in Christianity. We definitely don’t want to go to hell so we try to follow some basic traditions to get us into our version of heaven. Unfortunately for some religions that may be causing harm to people with other beliefs, today viewed as terrorism, in the past known as Crusades.

My question is, why can’t we live our version of Heaven now, why should I focus my prayers on achieving passage through the pearly gates leading to my version of Heaven. We need to BELIEVE that we can achieve our version of Heaven or success now, not after we’re dead.

But here’s where I think the real secret is revealed.

Most of us focus too much on ourselves, our own success to get what we want. We may think “It’s a struggle to achieve success through helping others achieve success, I want it first.”

But as one of our greatest mentors Zig Ziglar said, “If you help enough people get what they want, they’ll help you get what you want.”

The key to living your Heaven on Earth isn’t finding your own success through the expense of others but helping them achieve success so you can achieve significance, through other people’s successes.

Take some time TODAY to think about and write how your desires and passion can help others achieve success. You’ll experience negative thoughts going through this process on why you can’t so reword those thoughts into prayers or positive affirmations on how you can. If you focus and pray on the why and how you’ll awaken your internal Genie or Grand Overall Designer who has the power to help you achieve your vision of success through others by programming your subconscious to give you what you need.

In chapter eleven of Think and Grow Rich Napoleon Hill goes into explaining a subject that catches some of us off guard, and I’m sure it really did when he published this book in 1937, Sex Transmutation.

But when you think of the concept, it makes sense. Some individuals spend enormous time and energy into achieving that goal, sex. If that individual used that time and energy pursuing a different goal it would propel their success.

Now there must be something to this concept of capturing this sexual energy and using it to pursue our desires beyond the physical ones. With Mr. Hill interviewing hundreds of the most successful people in the world during his time, he uncovered this secret of success. But is it really a secret?

In 1726, at the age of twenty Benjamin Franklin created a system he called his 13 virtues to develop his character. The twelfth virtue was chastity in which he wrote, “Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.”

I can think of a number of individuals that have been in main stream media which should’ve practiced this virtue.

Both Ben and Napoleon’s thoughts on this subject are in line. Napoleon states that the emotions of sex has three constructive potentials:

  1. The perpetuation of mankind.
  2. The maintenance of health (as a therapeutic agency, it has no equal).
  3. The transformation of mediocrity into genius through transmission.

If individuals focused on the third point Mr. Hill makes, they wouldn’t have faced the outcome Mr. Franklin says to avoid, “the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.”

Is this one of the reasons why the Catholic religion requires its priests to remain celibate? So that they can use that sexual energy toward fulfilling their purpose to God? In the New Testament, 1 Corinthians 7:32-34, the Apostle Paul wrote about this basic concern that to be married is to be distracted from the spiritual;

“The unmarried man is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to please the Lord; but the married man is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried woman or girl is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit; but the married woman is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please her husband.”

The abstinence tradition also goes back to ancient Chinese and Buddhist traditions. In Daniel Reid’s book The Complete Book of Chinese Health and Healing, he states that the Taoist and Tantric Buddhist’s viewed sex as sacred and women revered as the source of all life on earth. Sexual essence and energy is used as a potent tool for progress on the spiritual path. Since they viewed sex as a sacred activity, some didn’t practice abstinence in that they didn’t only apply sexual energy to spiritual practice but the spiritual insight to sexual activity, enhancing them both.

Mr. Reid’s book also contains a section that outlines specific ‘sexercises’ to boost your sexual essence and how to convert it into energy. Once this sexual essence is converted into energy it can be converted into spiritual energy and raised up through your body to not only cleanse and energize your marrow, fluids, and nerves of the spine, but to transform that energy into pure spiritual vitality.

This topic of abstinence has also been researched for athletes to achieve ultimate performance. In the article Sex and Sports: Should Athletes Abstain Before Big Events? National Geographic News reported in 2006 that during the Winter Olympics many of the athletes where strictly avoiding sex. Some athletes think that sex before competition zaps energy. Muhammad Ali, for one, reportedly wouldn’t make love for six weeks before a fight. Research found that sex in fact stimulates the production of testosterone, thus boosting aggression, which would benefit sports that requires more aggression.  So why would some find benefit in abstinence?

If we go back to the book Think and Grow Rich, Mr. Hill states that sexual over-indulgence may not only destroy reason and will-power, but it may also lead to either temporary or permanent insanity. Now don’t get me wrong, Mr. Hill was not preaching abstinence, he saw the power that sexual energy had, that’s why he says you need to transmute that into a positive energy by balancing that energy with Love.

When you combine the emotions of sex and love together, most people are capable of great achievement, as long as they have a supporting partner. Let me ask you a question, even with just the emotion of the love we have for another person, will we drive ourselves to please that person? If that person we love doesn’t support or even discourages you, you’ll struggle to succeed because you won’t feel pushed to the next level. Unlike that person who gives you loving support, you’ll do what you can to please them.

Mr. Hill goes on to explain that in order to reach super achievement you need a third element, romance. Once you combine the emotions of sex, love and romance together you’ll be on the road to genius.

So let’s go ahead and bring these three emotions together:

Sexual Emotion – Sex is biological and sex alone, is a mighty urge to action, but its forces are like a cyclone – they are uncontrollable. Over indulgence may be a sign of a lack of will power which can affect other areas of your life.

 Love Emotion – Love alone in a marriage will not bring happiness, nor will sex alone. The emotion of love brings out and develops our artistic and aesthetic nature. Love is life’s greatest experience and can bring one with communion with Infinite Intelligence.

Romance Emotion – When you combine the emotions of sex and love with romance the obstructions between the finite mind of man and Infinite Intelligence are removed, then the genius is born. Not only is the energy level in your relationship higher but the level of your success should be higher.

This information is beneficial to both men and women, relationships are built on blending all three of these emotions in a healthy way. If you form a triangle with these three emotions and then removed one, it would be incomplete. Like the classic fire triangle, it requires Heat (Sex), Oxygen (Love), combined with Fuel (Romance), to create fire or a higher energy level.

To achieve our ultimate desire we need to learn how to convert that energy into positive action that adds value to others.

I think it comes down to what is best for the individual and what they believe in, and like everything else it’s all in moderation, too much of anything can damaging.

One way to increase your love and romance emotions is to check out John’s new book on Intentional Living and learn how you can add value to those closest to you.

What do you desire?  Do you have the persistence to accomplish it? You can probably answer that question right now because I think the majority of us dream of something but just lack the will power, or persistence, to follow through to achievement.

Why is that? Why do we struggle to follow through with our desire to be and/or achieve more?

Napoleon Hill insists that persistence is a state of mind and can be cultivated. Like all states of mind, persistence is based upon definite causes.

Take a minute to grab a piece of paper and write down on the top what you desire, a life goal, and answer the follow questions;

DEFINITENESS OF PURPOSE. Knowing what one wants is the first and, perhaps, the most important step toward the development of persistence. A strong motive forces one to surmount many difficulties. 

Why do you want to achieve this goal, what is the purpose? How will it benefit you and the more important question, how will it benefit others?

DESIRE. It is comparatively easy to acquire and to maintain persistence in pursuing the object of intense desire.

In order to live your purpose you need to focus on what the positive outcomes will be in your life and why you desire this goal/purpose? We do have to remember that our purpose on this planet is to add value to others. If your desires focus on your own gratification you will eventually fail or die a lonely miserable life.

SELF-RELIANCE. Belief in one’s ability to carry out a plan encourages one to follow the plan through with persistence.

Do you believe you can achieve your goal and purpose? If not, what can you do to believe in yourself more?

DEFINITENESS OF PLANS. Organized plans, even though they may be weak and entirely impractical, encourage persistence. I believe one of the main reasons why people don’t achieve their purpose is due to not writing out the process to accomplish it. 

How can you break your goal down to actionable tasks to make them easier to accomplish?

ACCURATE KNOWLEDGE. Knowing that one’s plans are sound, based upon experience or observation, encourages persistence; “guessing” instead of “knowing” destroys persistence.

What can you do daily to increase your knowledge to help you achieve your purpose?

CO-OPERATION. Sympathy, understanding, and harmonious cooperation with others tend to develop persistence. Although this can also sabotage your plans due to criticism, you need to carefully choose who you share your purpose with.

Who will encourage and help you accomplish your desire or purpose? Who will laugh and criticize you?

WILL-POWER. The habit of concentrating one’s thoughts upon the building of plans for the attainment of a definite purpose, leads to persistence.

What actions can you schedule daily/weekly/monthly to increase your will-power?

HABIT. Persistence is the direct result of habit. The mind absorbs and becomes a part of the daily experiences upon which it feeds. Everyone’s life revolves around habits, even to the extent of not even realizing that we do them.

What is one habit you can change that will help you develop the persistence to accomplish your goals to achieve your desire?

These steps sound easy enough but unfortunately, like most easy things in life, they’re the hardest to implement. If you consistently struggle to achieve your desires then you need to examine what symptoms that cause you lack of persistence and then overcome them.

SYMPTOMS OF LACK OF PERSISTENCE

Here you will find the real enemies which stand between you and noteworthy achievement. Here you will find not only the “symptoms” indicating weakness of PERSISTENCE, but also the deeply seated subconscious causes of this weakness. Study the list carefully, and face yourself squarely IF YOU REALLY WISH TO KNOW WHO YOU ARE, AND WHAT YOU ARE CAPABLE OF DOING. These are the weaknesses which must be mastered by all who accumulate riches.

1. Failure to recognize and to clearly define exactly what one wants.

WHAT IS YOU DEFINITE PURPOSE? If you don’t know, don’t feel bad, the majority of people don’t. When I ask people what their goals are they either don’t know or don’t want to share them, probably due to the fear of criticism.

2. Procrastination, with or without cause. (Usually backed up with a formidable array of alibis and excuses).

WHAT DO YOU NEED TO START DOING TODAY? Do you procrastinate because you doubt yourself? If that’s the case then you need to start with the next symptom to the lack of persistence.

3. Lack of interest in acquiring specialized knowledge.

YOU CANNOT CHANGE WHAT YOU THINK TILL YOU CHANGE WHAT YOU STUDY. Is your purpose to live a long and healthy life? Do you want to become a realtor? The first step in achieving any goal or purpose is to know why it’s important and how to do it. You don’t achieve your purpose, or stay healthy by taking a pill. Focus daily on learning one thing that will help you achieve your purpose.

4. Indecision, the habit of “passing the buck” on all occasions, instead of facing issues squarely. (Also backed by alibis).

WHEN YOU BLAME OTHERS FOR YOUR MISTAKES YOU’LL ALWAYS MAKE MISTAKES. Once you realize that you’re responsible for the results you get, you’ll get better results.

5. The habit of relying upon alibis instead of creating definite plans for the solution of problems.

ARE YOU TIRED OF YOUR OWN EXCUSES? Look in the mirror and ask yourself, “How do I hold myself accountable?” Do you like the answer?

6. Self-satisfaction. There is but little remedy for this affliction, and no hope for those who suffer from it.

TO ACHIEVE YOUR PURPOSE YOU NEED TO DO WHAT YOU DON’T LIKE TO DO? Why do some people struggle to give up bad, life destructive habits? Temporary self-satisfaction is more of a priority then having to sacrifice something or do what’s hard to achieve your desires.

7. Indifference, usually reflected in one’s readiness to compromise on all occasions, rather than meet opposition and fight it. 

PEOPLE WHO COMPROMISE THEIR BELIEFS DEVALUE THEMSELVES. Each time you agree to do something that you disagree with, do you lessen your values? It’s alright to compromise on certain things, but not when it comes to achieving your ultimate purpose.

8. The habit of blaming others for one’s mistakes, and accepting unfavorable circumstances as being unavoidable.

YOU ARE THE RESULTS OF YOUR DECISIONS AND ACTIONS. People who complain about not having enough money usually blame their employer for not paying them enough. Here’s a thought, become more valuable by increasing your knowledge, skills and abilities and people will find more value in you.

9. Weakness of desire, due to neglect in the choice of MOTIVES that impel action.

LIFE BECOMES TOO EASY. We all get comfortable when we can pay the bills and enjoy life, but is it at the cost of achieving your desire to help someone else achieve theirs?

10. Willingness, even eagerness, to quit at the first sign of defeat.

OBSTACLES TO OUR DESIRES TEST OUR PERSISTENCE. If it was easy to accomplish your goals and achieve what you desire, everyone would do it. If you quit when it gets hard you either don’t deserve to accomplish your desire or it’s not your true purpose for being born. Don’t give up on you.

11. Lack of ORGANIZED PLANS, placed in writing where they may be analyzed.

BREAK DOWN THE BIG GOALS INTO SMALLER TASKS. One reason why some people never start to achieve their desire is because it looks too hard. You need to break it down into actionable, time bound steps. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. How do you achieve your desires, one step toward it each day.

12. The habit of neglecting to move on ideas, or to grasp opportunity when it presents itself.

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. I think one of the main reasons why we fail to move on ideas is because we doubt our abilities. Sometimes you just need to jump off the cliff and build your wings on the way down.

13. WISHING instead of WILLING.

THERE’S NO GENIE TO GRANT YOU WISHES. If you wish for a million dollars you still have to at least play the lottery. Instead of the lottery take that money and spend it on your own development. It’s a better investment and you have a greater chance at earning a million dollars.

14. The habit of compromising with POVERTY instead of aiming at riches. General absence of ambition to be, to do, and to own.

POVERTY IS A CHOICE. If you’ve grown up in poverty then you have a choice, continue living your current paradigm or develop a new one. The majority of people living in poverty don’t add value to themselves. If you live in the United States then poverty is a choice, if you rely on someone or something else for your own happiness you’ll be unhappy.

15. Searching for all the short-cuts to riches, trying to GET without GIVING a fair equivalent, usually reflected in the habit of gambling, endeavoring to drive “sharp” bargains.

“IF YOU HELP ENOUGH PEOPLE GET WHAT THEY WANT THEY’LL HELP YOU GET WHAT YOU WANT.” Zig Ziglar’s tag line says it all. You have to give to get, but you have to have something worth giving. People who don’t give may feel like they have nothing to give or don’t value themselves enough to believe that they have something of value to give. Which means they haven’t found their true purpose.

16. FEAR OF CRITICISM, failure to create plans and to put them into action, because of what other people will think, do, or say. This enemy belongs at the head of the list, because it generally exists in one’s subconscious mind, where its presence is not recognized. 

PEOPLE WHO CRITICIZE ARE JEALOUS.  Unfortunately this fear stops us from even sharing our goals. I’ve done some off the wall things in my life and believe me I’ve been criticized for it. I’m willing to live with my decisions and hopefully improve because of them. People who criticize are usually those who are afraid to do what you’re doing.

Look the list over and examine each symptom for the lack of persistence and find a way to heal yourself so that you can move forward in achieving your desire.

Napoleon Hill gives us four simple steps which lead to the habit of PERSISTENCE. They call for no great amount of intelligence, no particular amount of education, and but little time or effort.

The necessary steps which lead to the habit of PERSISTENCE are;

1. A DEFINITE PURPOSE BACKED BY BURNING DESIRE FOR ITS FULFILLMENT.

2. A DEFINITE PLAN, EXPRESSED IN CONTINUOUS ACTION.

3. A MIND CLOSED TIGHTLY AGAINST ALL NEGATIVE AND DISCOURAGING INFLUENCES, including negative suggestions of relatives, friends and acquaintances.

4. A FRIENDLY ALLIANCE WITH ONE OR MORE PERSONS WHO WILL ENCOURAGE ONE TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH BOTH PLAN AND PURPOSE.

These four steps are essential for success in all walks of life. The entire purpose of the thirteen principles of the Think and Grow Rich philosophy is to enable one to take these four steps as a matter of habit.

It’s our daily habits that make who we are. If you don’t like your habits and struggle to change them then find someone who can help you, or at least hold you accountable. Some people have a trusted friend, belong to a mastermind group or hire a professional coach.

WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ACHIEVE YOUR DESIRES?

How often do you fail to complete something because you struggle to decide on how to complete it? This must be why Mr. Hill says that decision making is how you master procrastination. If you look up the definition to procrastination it reads:
Procrastination – To be slow or late about doing something that should be done: to delay doing something until a later time because you do not want to do it, because you are lazy, etc.
To be slow or late at doing something comes down to deciding to JUST DO IT. When we procrastinate we basically struggle with deciding on how to or how well we can complete the task. If we decide not to complete it we won’t have to worry about letting ourself down and we won’t have to face criticism from others.
That’s what perfectionism is really about, not finishing the project because you expect it to be perfect, so we decide to do other things instead of finishing something that could be less than perfect. If this is you, then decide that it’s alright if you make a mistake, people may judge you worse for not finishing a project then only finishing it at a 90% level.
So decide to finish.
In this chapter Mr. Hill focuses on how the United States Founding Fathers, the people who signed the Declaration of Independence. They made a decision to liberate America from England. If those 50 Americans didn’t make a decision and follow through with their decision, who knows what flag would be flying over our schools now, some say it would be a Swastika.
One reason people struggle to make decisions is because they really don’t have a process to think through the decision making process. If you Google decision making process you’ll see a number of tools/steps to us. Here are six steps of an intuitive decision-making process from the Ethics and Compliance Initiative website;
  • Step 1: Define the problem
  • Step 2: Identify available alternative solutions to the problem
  • Step 3: Evaluate the identified alternatives
  • Step 4: Make the decision
  • Step 5: Implement the decision
  • Step 6: Evaluate the decision
Looks pretty easy, doesn’t it? Then why do some of us struggle with it so much? Is it because it’s so easy that we take it for granted, it’s something we have the power to do. But most of the time it’s what Phil McGraw said, “Sometimes you make the right decision, sometimes you make the decision right.” That’s what happens when you evaluate the decision, you tweak it. You need to manage your decisions constantly so that they stay relevant with changes and increased information and knowledge.
Like all skills and abilities, we can improve our decision making skills. Harvard Business Review (HBR) June 2015 issue focuses on decision making and in the article “Leaders as Decision Architects” outlines these 5 steps to improve decisions;
Step 1: Understand how decisions are made. Human beings have two modes of processing information and making decisions:
  • System 1 is automatic, instinctive and emotional.
  • System 2 is slow, logical, and deliberate.
Step 2: Define the problem. Behavioral economics tools are most effective when:
  • Human behavior is at the core of the problem.
  • People are not acting in their own best interests.
  • The problem can be narrowly defined.
Step 3: Diagnose the underlying causes. To determine whether poor decision making is a result of insufficient motivation or of cognitive biases, ask two questions:
  • Is the problem caused by people’s failure to take any action at all?
  • Do people take action, but in a way that introduces systematic errors into the decision-making process?
Step 4: Design the solution. Use one of the three levers:
  • Trigger system one thinking by introducing changes that arouse emotions, harness bias, or simplify processes.
  • Engage system 2 thinking by using joint evaluations, creating opportunities for reflection, increasing accountability, and introducing reminders and planning prompts.
  • Bypass both systems by setting defaults and building in automatic adjustments.
Step 5: Test the solution:
  • Rigorously test the proposed solution to avoid costly mistakes.
  • Identify a target outcome that is specific and measurable.
  • Identify a range of possible solutions and then focus on one.
  • Introduce the charge in some areas of the organization (the “treatment group”) and not others (the “control group”).
Napoleon Hill points out that the educational system (at least in the 1930’s) didn’t teach or even encourage students the habit of definite decision. School is mainly made up of facts and figures, not necessarily on how to use the facts and figures to make decisions while seeking your ultimate purpose. Instead we’re lead to employment that we just follow processes, not to becoming leaders who make decisions to change and improve the process.
One of the main reasons why we don’t make decisions is because we struggle with internal barriers on making and even more likely, failing to follow through on those decisions. Making and following through with a decision takes courage, sometimes great courage and the willingness to push past the Six Basic Fears outlined in Chapter 15, “How to Outwit The Six Ghosts of Fear,” which are;
The fear of POVERTY
The fear of CRITICISM
The fear of ILL HEALTH
The fear of LOSS OF LOVE OF SOMEONE
The fear of OLD AGE
The fear of DEATH
As George S. Patton said “The time to take counsel of your fears is before you make an important battle decision. That’s the time to listen to every fear you can imagine! When you have collected all the facts and fears and made your decision, turn off all your fears and go ahead!” This doesn’t just apply to a battle that Patton was describing, it can also be the fears we face in everyday life that stops us from achieving our own personal battles.
So when you’re struggling to follow through on your decisions, which one of the fears is keeping you from moving forward? Unfortunately, those people closest to us could be the reason why we don’t follow through with our dreams. In fact Mr. Hill, in the chapter on “Organized Planning,” lists that the wrong selection of a mate in marriage and the wrong selection of business associates as two of the Thirty Causes of Failure.
Have you ever been laughed at when you told someone your dream? Have you ever laughed at someone who shared their dream with you? It takes will power, dedication and persistence to move past your fears. That’s why Napoleon Hill continues with the next chapter in Think and Grow Rich is on “Persistence.” Being persistent is how we follow through with our decisions until we achieve success, no matter how many barriers we face.
If you’re currently reading this book then take some time to reread this chapter and explore how you can increase your leadership skills to give you more soulutions.

We left off last month with areas leadership was needed when Think and Grow Rich was published in 1937. Unfortunately, some of those areas are the ones that need the most leadership today. But we need to include professional sports to the list, you just don’t see as many sports icons like we did in the past. (Fertile Fields in Which New Leadership is required). Although there are more streams of media today that seems to feed off the negative stories. Sports figures are human and all humans have flaws, the more popular you become the larger the chance for those flaws to become public. On the other side everyone has the ability to help others, some chose to, others don’t, and eventually if you do you may get recognized.

The rest of the chapter on Organized Planning outlines what a person needs to do to look for a job and how to effectively market yourself to get the job you want. But with everything you need to evaluate yourself first in order to see where your strengths and weaknesses are and what gaps you need to fill in order to become more marketable.

There are a number of reasons why we struggle to achieve success and Mr. Hill lays out 30 reasons for failure.

1. UNFAVORABLE HEREDITARY BACKGROUND.
2. LACK OF A WELL-DEFINED PURPOSE IN LIFE.
3. LACK OF AMBITION TO AIM ABOVE MEDIOCRITY.
4. INSUFFICIENT EDUCATION.
5. LACK OF SELF-DISCIPLINE.
6. ILL HEALTH.
7. UNFAVORABLE ENVIRONMENTAL INFLUENCES DURING CHILDHOOD.
8. PROCRASTINATION.
9. LACK OF PERSISTENCE.
10. NEGATIVE PERSONALITY.
11. LACK OF CONTROLLED SEXUAL URGE.
12. UNCONTROLLED DESIRE FOR “SOMETHING FOR NOTHING.”
13. LACK OF A WELL DEFINED POWER OF DECISION.
14. ONE OR MORE OF THE 6 BASIC FEARS.
15. WRONG SELECTION OF A MATE IN MARRIAGE.
16. OVER-CAUTION.
17. WRONG SELECTION OF ASSOCIATES IN BUSINESS.
18. SUPERSTITION AND PREJUDICE.
19. WRONG SELECTION OF A VOCATION.
20. LACK OF CONCENTRATION OF EFFORT.
21. THE HABIT OF INDISCRIMINATE SPENDING.
22. LACK OF ENTHUSIASM.
23. INTOLERANCE.
24. INTEMPERANCE.
25. INABILITY TO COOPERATE WITH OTHERS.
26. POSSESSION OF POWER THAT WAS NOT ACQUIRED THROUGH SELF EFFORT.
27. INTENTIONAL DISHONESTY.
28. EGOTISM AND VANITY.
29. GUESSING INSTEAD OF THINKING.
30. LACK OF CAPITAL.
(Here is an expanded version of the Thirty Causes of Failure)

When you look over this list of possible failures, which ones do you or have you struggled with? Identify what failures you experienced, write them down and then write down what you did to overcome it or what you need or could’ve done to overcome it. The response to your failures can be vital when marketing yourself to a prospective employer.

Chapter seven on Organized Planning also covers when and how to apply for a position. It’s interesting to read the different forms of media that could be used back in 1937 to promote yourself. Mr. Hill would’ve been amazed at the variety of methods available on the internet to promote yourself and spread your message, not to mention the ability to research topics compared to what needed to be done in a library during his time.

The “How” to apply for a position is covered at great depths, from the format of your resume, or “brief” as he calls it, and the steps to get the job you desire. The biggest takeaway from this section is to forget “what the organization can do for you?” but “how can your talents help the prospected organization succeed?”

Napoleon outlines how you need to adopt his QQS formula as a habit. QSS stands for, Quality of service, Quantity of service, and Spirit of service.

Let us analyze the formula to make sure we understand exactly what it means.

QUALITY of service shall be construed to mean the performance of 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 shall be understood as 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 greater skill is developed through practice and experience. Emphasis is again placed on the word HABIT.

SPIRIT of service shall be construed to mean the HABIT of agreeable, harmonious conduct which will induce cooperation from associates and fellow employees.

Adequacy of QUALITY and QUANTITY of service is not sufficient to maintain a permanent market for your services. The conduct, or the SPIRIT in which you deliver service, is a strong determining factor in connection with both the price you receive, and the duration of employment.

You can only imagine how valuable you’ll become to others if you follow this formula. But first you need to focus on adding value to yourself before people can value you. First you need to find the gaps in your performance through evaluating yourself.

One of the ways to really examine yourself is to answer the 28 questions in the self-analysis questionnaire.This personal inventory, if answered truthfully, will raise your awareness level and help you identify your performance gaps. Whether you act upon them or not has been a struggle for mankind sign the beginning of time.

This chapter on Organized Planning continues to outline ways to find opportunities to accumulate riches by analyzing markets and how to market yourself. It’s the longest chapter in Think and Grow Rich and I think if Mr. Hill would’ve come out with a second edition he would’ve shortened or split this chapter up.

If you’re currently reading this book then take some time to reread this chapter and explore how you can increase your leadership skills to give you more soulutions.

SELF ANALYSIS QUESTIONNAIRE
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

1. Have I attained the goal which I established as my objective for this year? (You should work with a definite for this year? (You should work with a definite yearly objective to be attained as a part of your major life objective.)
2. Have I delivered service of the best possible QUALITY of which I was capable, or could I have improved any part of this service?
3. Have I delivered service in the greatest possible QUANTITY of which I was capable?
4. Has the spirit of my conduct been harmonious and cooperative at all times?
5. Have I permitted the habit of procrastination to decrease my efficiency, and if so, to what extent?
6. Have I improved my PERSONALITY? and if so, in what ways?
7. Have I been persistent in following my plans through completion?
8. Have I reached decisions PROMPTLY and DEFINITELY on all occasions?
9. Have I permitted any one or more of the six basic fears to decrease my efficiency?
10. Have I been either “over-cautious” or “under-cautious”?
11. Has my relationships with associates in work been pleasant or unpleasant? If it has been unpleasant, has it been partly or wholly mine?
12. Have I dissipated any of my energy through lack of CONCENTRATION of effort?
13. Have I been open-minded and tolerant in connection with all subjects?
14. In what way have I improved my way to render service?
15. Have I been intemperate (excessive) in any of my habits?
16. Have I expressed, either openly or secretly, any form of EGOTISM?
17. Has my conduct towards others been in such that it has induced them to respect me?
18. Have my opinions and DECISIONS been based on guesswork, or accuracy of analysis and THOUGHT?
19. Have I followed the habit of budgeting my time, and expenses, and income? and have I been conservative in the budgets?
20. How much time have I devoted to unprofitable effort which I might have used to better advantage?
21. How many I REBUDGET my time, and change my habits so I will become more efficient this coming year?
22. Have I been guilty of conduct which was not approved my conscience?
23. In what ways have I rendered MORE SERVICE and BETTER SERVICE that I was paid to render?
24. Have I been unfair to anyone, and if so, in what way?
25. If I had been the purchaser of my own services for the year, would I have been satisfied with my purchase?
26. Am I in the right vocation, and if not, why not?
27. Has the purchaser of my services been satisfied with my service, if not, why?
28. What is my present rating on the fundamental principles of success? (Make this rating fairly, and frankly, and have it checked by someone who is courageous enough to do it accurately.)

 

 

Organized planning is when your desires start to take shape to become a reality. At this stage people take their desire seriously and start to pursue it by developing a plan to do so. One of the keys to doing this, as Napoleon Hill stresses, is to build your mastermind alliance. You cannot accomplish your ultimate desire by yourself. True success always involves other people and a structured way to do this is by forming a mastermind group.

Everyone will agree that two heads are better than one. Well, most people would agree, I know a few that wouldn’t but that’s their loss, you don’t want folks like that in your mastermind group. The group won’t reach its full potential unless there is harmony where everyone can freely share their thoughts and ideas.

I believe that it takes strong leadership skills to accomplish your desires. Skills that bring people together to work towards a single objective are the skills that help leaders achieve their desires.

Mr. Hill dissects leadership in this chapter and breaks down the 11 attributes of leadership that are necessary to effectively organize your mastermind group and make plans to achieve your desires (goals).

11 Major Attributes of Leadership – Napoleon Hill

1. UNWAVERING COURAGE based upon knowledge of self, and of one’s occupation. No follower wishes to be dominated by a leader who lacks self-confidence and courage. No intelligent follower will be dominated by such a leader very long.

2. SELF-CONTROL. The man who cannot control himself, can never control others. Self-control sets a mighty example for one’s followers, which the more intelligent will emulate.

3. A KEEN SENSE OF JUSTICE. Without a sense of fairness and justice, no leader can command and retain the respect of his followers.

4. DEFINITENESS OF DECISION. The man who wavers in his decisions, shows that he is not sure of himself. He cannot lead others successfully.

5. DEFINITENESS OF PLANS. The successful leader must plan his work, and work his plan. A leader who moves by guesswork, without practical, definite plans, is comparable to a ship without a rudder. Sooner or later he will land on the rocks.

6. THE HABIT OF DOING MORE THAN PAID FOR. One of the penalties of leadership is the necessity of willingness, upon the part of the leader, to do more than he requires of his followers.

7. A PLEASING PERSONALITY. No slovenly, careless person can become a successful leader. Leadership calls for respect. Followers will not respect a leader who does not grade high on all of the factors of a Pleasing Personality.

8. SYMPATHY AND UNDERSTANDING. The successful leader must be in sympathy with his followers. Moreover, he must understand them and their problems.

9. MASTERY OF DETAIL. Successful leadership calls for mastery of details of the leader’s position.

10. WILLINGNESS TO ASSUME FULL RESPONSIBILITY. The successful leader must be willing to assume responsibility for the mistakes and the shortcomings of his followers. If he tries to shift this responsibility, he will not remain the leader. If one of his followers makes a mistake, and shows himself incompetent, the leader must consider that it is he who failed.

11. COOPERATION. The successful leader must understand, and apply the principle of cooperative effort and be able to induce his followers to do the same. Leadership calls for POWER, and power calls for COOPERATION.

Napoleon goes on to describe two different forms of leadership and which one should be used to gain the most followers, “The first, and by far the most effective is LEADERSHIP BY CONSENT of, and with the sympathy of the followers. The second is LEADERSHIP BY FORCE, without the consent and sympathy of the followers.” It’s hard to believe that this was written in 1937 and people today still try to lead by force.

Napoleon Hill address different failures in Think and Grow Rich and the following is what he wrote about in the 1930’s. How many of these failures do you see in the news, your organization, or within yourself?

Causes of Failure in Leadership

Any one of these faults is sufficient to induce failure. Study the list carefully if you aspire to be a leader, and make sure you are free of these faults.

1. Inability to organize details. The successful leader must be the master of all details connected with his position. That means, of course, that he must acquire the habit of relegating details to capable lieutenants.

2. Unwillingness to render humble service. “The greatest among ye shall be the servant of all” is a truth which all able leaders observe and respect.

3. Expectation of pay for what they “know” instead of what they do with what they know. The world does not pay people for what they know. It pays them for what they do.

4. Fear of competition from followers. Leaders who fear that one of their followers may take their position is practically sure to realize that fear sooner or later.

5. Lack of imagination. Without imagination, the leader is incapable of meeting emergencies.

6. Selfishness. The really great leader claims none of the honors.

7. Intemperance. Intemperance in any of its forms destroys endurance and the vitality of all who indulge in it.

8. Disloyalty. Disloyalty marks one as being less than the dust of the earth.

9. Emphasis on the “authority” of leadership. If a leader is a real leader, he will have no need to advertise that fact except by his conduct — his sympathy, understanding, fairness, and a demonstration that he knows his job.”

10. Emphasis of title. The people who make too much over their title generally have little else to emphasize.

If you can identify leadership failures you will start to see trends on where they are happening. Every time you turn on the news you see an example of someone failing as a leader. Napoleon Hill identified a number of areas back in 1937 that needed what he referred to as LEADERSHIP BY CONSENT.

Fertile fields in which new leadership is required (1937)

“There are a few fertile fields in which there has been a decline of leadership, and in which the new type of leader may find an abundance of opportunity.

First – In the field of politics, there is a most insistent demand for new leaders; a demand which indicates nothing less than an emergency. The majority of politicians have, seemingly, become high-grade legalized racketeers. They have increased taxes and debauched the machinery of industry and business until the people can no longer stand the burden.

Second – the Banking business is undergoing a reform. The leaders in this field have almost entirely lost the confidence of the public. Already the bankers have sensed the need of reform, and they have begun it.

Third – Industry calls for new leaders. The old type of leaders thoughts and moved in terms of dividends instead of thinking and moving in terms of human equations! The future leader in industry, to endure, must regard himself as a quasi-public official whose duty it is to manage his trust in such as a way that it will work hardship on no individual, or group of individuals. Exploitation of working men is a thing of the past. Let that man who aspires to leadership in the field of business, industry and labor remembers this.

Fourth – The religious leader of the future will be forced to give more attention to the temporal needs of his followers, in the solution of their economic and personal problems of the present, and less attention to the dead past and the yet unborn future.

Fifth – In the professions of law, medicine, and education, a new brand of leadership, and to some extent, new leaders will become a necessity. This is especially true in the field of education. The leader is that field must, in the future, find ways and means of teaching people how to apply the knowledge they receive in school. He must deal more with practice and less with theory.

Sixth – New leaders will be required in the field of Journalism. Newspapers of the future, to be conducted successfully, must be divorced from ‘special privilege’ and relieved from the subsidy of advertising. They must cease to be organs of propaganda for the interests which patronize their advertising columns. The type of newspaper which publishes scandal and lewd pictures will eventually go the way of all forces which debauch the human mind.

These are but a few of the fields in which opportunity for new leaders and a new brand of leadership are now available.”

Think and Grow Rich was published after the great depression, so we can understand that the fields which needed new leadership back then is relevant today, or at least in my opinion. This, of course, doesn’t apply to everyone in those fields, it’s usually a few that make the many look bad.

I was beginning to feel the stress in my back. Hours of toil, hunched over this old typewriter, while my fingers play that off beat tune that every writer is familiar with. The clack clack clack of the keys are lost in my ears and are replaced with the words in my mind. After all, my hands are an extension of my thoughts by which I communicate ideas.

The audible change in the tide as it rises closer to my home alerts me of the late hour. The warm evening air brings the chill off the ocean as it runs over the waves and perfumes this room with its essence. The surrounding San Juan jungle comes alive with the calls and cries of nocturnal beasts and island natives, as a red gibbous moon climbs toward the zenith. Voodoo is in the air tonight and the only thing keeping the weirdness away are these four walls. Our house is but a cinderblock, constructed of concrete and tin, precariously set alongside the Atlantic shoreline.

Like the wavering flames of the candles by which I write, my concentration becomes unsteady as I slap away the sharp pricking bite of a mimi. Little devils, tinier than a normal mosquito, that come in the afternoon to bother the locals and terrorize the tourists. It’s late, but I only have a few hundred words to go. I must get it out. Out of my mind and on to this cheap stationery so I may earn this week’s cache of food and rum.

Do you have an imagination? No this isn’t a trick question. While you ponder on that, let me ask this; have you ever heard someone, maybe yourself, say that they don’t have a very good imagination? Why is that? Why is it so easy for children to escape to an imagined dreamscape, while adults struggle to comprehend the logic behind today’s youth?

Okay, okay, enough with the questions. The truth is there is no right or wrong answer to those questions, I ask them to prompt those gears in your brain to start turning and creating answers you can only create through your own specialized knowledge. I also ask these questions to kick start some creative thinking, just in case the intro was not successful. The opening is an excerpt from an exercise I use to juice up my imagination before I begin to write seriously. In this example I was reading a section of a biography of Hunter S. Thompson. In this section Hunter was living in San Juan. Reading about his location and situation stirred something within me and compelled me to conjure up, through his perspective, what life must have been like.

If at any point you were able to feel the San Juan breeze, or hear the Atlantic oceans crescendo on the shore, you utilized your imagination. If by chance you are one of the population that believes you don’t have a strong imagination, let me say this; the imagination, or creativity that you have within is like a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it will become. So if you believe your sense of wonder has atrophied, it is your fault and your fault alone. As Mr. Hill states in his chapter on Imagination,

“Your imaginative faculty may have become weak through inaction. It can be revived and made alert through use.”

A primary focus that I found most intriguing was Napoleon’s dissection of our imagination into two categories; synthetic and creative imagination. Though constructed from the same ability, each one originates from different paths of inspiration.

According to Mr. Hill, the synthetic imagination is the faculty were we “arrange old concepts, ideas or plans into new combinations.” He then goes on to explain that through the use of the creative imagination, “the finite mind of humankind has direct communication with Infinite Intelligence. It is the faculty through which ‘hunches’ and ‘inspirations’ are received.” Now, though I appreciate this philosophy, I would like to synthetically take a stab at creatively explaining how I believe we can truly activate our imagination and use it.

Instead of a notion of two forms of imagination, I believe that there are levels of imagination by which we are able to function. First is that prescribed “hunch” or “inspiration” or that creative imagination that sparks the thought process which inevitably becomes an idea. Once our idea becomes concrete or takes form as a desire, we utilize our experience, education and observations to synthetically imagine how to transform our dreams into reality.

Someone who I envisioned while preparing for this month’s theme was, as I mentioned earlier, Hunter S. Thompson. Though most people are only aware of Thompson’s persona as a drug addled drunk, made popular by his book, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, few have been exposed to his other works and his style known as Gonzo journalism. Hunter saw the world differently than most folks, and wasn’t afraid to show it. As a nation watched the ’72 presidential campaign unfold and read about honorable politicians masquerade across the states, Thompson believed, “With the truth so dull and depressing, the only working alternative is wild bursts of madness and filigree.” So that’s what he wrote about.

All in all, our imagination is unique to each and every one of us. Whether we use it or not isn’t important, it’s how we use it. Some are intimidated by their own thoughts and therefore chose to not share them with the world. This is a shame. I had a friend once, who told me,

“Your imagination is what you are, not who you are.”

Now I am not sure what he exactly meant by that, but my only reasoning behind his statement is, your dreams are trying to tell you something, your inspirations are yelling at you to do something. Don’t listen to who others think you should be. Be yourself and listen to what those dreams say about you. Sometimes the quickest way to discovering who we are is stopping, being still and allowing your mind to drift off to where ever it wants to go.

“The Edge… there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over.”
~ Hunter S. Thompson

This article is written by David Leingang.