It was 1937 and we were in the midst of The Great Depression. Americans were broke and many were homeless and going hungry. Imagine an author saying that someone’s economic status had to do with their mental attitude. I imagine what prevented Napoleon Hill from being ridden out of a town on a rail was that his ideas about creating wealth were inspired and mentored by the richest industrialist in the world, Andrew Carnegie. In the past 75 years, the book has been constantly in print in many languages and has sold tens of millions of copies. It almost singlehandedly spawned the self-help book and motivational business.
I like to wait until about a week before my newest audio for the Moneylove Club gets recorded to come up with the theme, and I like to come up with some new idea or format for each edition. It was just by accident that I came upon some quotes by Napoleon Hill, and then realized that Think And Grow Rich was published in 1937, so this was its 75th anniversary. What better subject to talk about than some of Napoleon Hill’s wealth creation ideas with my own comments and suggestions on how to apply them to today’s economy.
I always like to read the first sentence in a book I am about to read or study. In the case of Think And Grow Rich, the first sentence really sets the tone for the whole book, and just by itself could constitute an entire prosperity seminar. Read it a few times and see if you don’t agree:
“Truly thoughts are things, and powerful things at that, when they are mixed with definiteness of purpose, persistence, and a burning desire for their translation into riches or other material objects.”
I enjoy speculating on what might have happened if certain circumstances had occurred in a slightly different or even opposite way from how they actually happened. I wonder what impact it would have had if Andrew Carnegie hadn’t built those nearly 3000 libraries, where millions of children over the years, many of them before the invention of television or computers, gained knowledge and imagination and inspiration roaming those buildings. And what impact would it have had if the millions of people who read Think And Grow Rich actually put the ideas and strategies into practice in their lives, so that a huge wave of prosperity consciousness swept over the nation and across the world.
What if the above opening sentence from the book became a universal mantra that every man, woman, and child said and believed as they woke up every morning? Of course, we could speculate on and on–but one action rooted in the physical world and the present moment would be for you to start memorizing that sentence and sharing it with others and repeating it over and over again to yourself. And you don’t have to speculate–you’ll actually be there to see the results.