In case you need some food inspiration, while working out those self-help inspirations. Cheers!
Today was my last day at work, and I got this sweet good bye card!
“The Mastery of Procrastination”
According to Napoleon Hill’s book, Think & Grow Rich this is the 7th Step towards Riches.
It’s fitting that the chapter I’m reading today would align with the current Supreme Court Case Hollingsworth v. Perry that is being decided. The decisions of this case will either confirm my believe that life is getting better for everyone or put it on pause… Slowly but surely, we are coming together to decide that no human should be treated less than human. Today marriage equality, tomorrow..?
One of the arguments from the Justices was, why should this be heard now?? Well, if its not now, then it’s later.. and later just means procrastination.
Whether its in regards to your personal financial freedom or in respects to the fundamental right for two consenting adults to marry the person they love—-life is a series of decisions that need to be made.
As a gay adult, I can only hope people will decide that love is love, but for now, the only decisions I can control, are those for my financial future.
Today is my last day at my “9-5” job, and if everything works out, my last day in any type of “9-5.” To make that a reality, I need to heed the advice from this chapter in Think & Grow Rich.
The first suggestion in this chapter is to “Tell the world what you intend to do, but first show it.”
Basically, Hill is advising you hold your tongue, especially when associated with your business goals. He goes on to mention that :
Analysis of several hundred people who had accumulated fortunes well beyond the million dollar mark disclosed the fact that every one of them had the habit of reaching decisions promptly and of changing these decisions slowly, if and when they were changed. People who fail to accumulate money, without exception, have the habit of reaching decisions, if at all, very slowly and of changing these decisions quickly and often.
I’m notoriously indecisive and am prone to deciding to do things on a whim. This decision attitude is going to be something I’ll have to really keep after. I knew that reading self-help books and living out the advice literally, was going to be a challenge.. Some of the habits I already posses. However, this is one I’ll have to work hard on.
So, just a bit of background info… I’ve probably convinced myself what type of profession I should pursue, and have changed it over 20 times in my life. In college, I changed my mind so much that after all the random classes and changes of major, I ended up graduating with a “General Studies” degree. Basically, I knew a little about a lot of things. Would I go back and change those decisions? No. They made me who I am today. I’m empowered by the knowledge I acquired. But, is this a habit I should hold onto?? Absolutely not.
Here’s to building up good habits…and in the meantime, Loving Life.
In Napoleon Hill’s Think & Grow Rich, the 6th step towards riches is the crystallization of desire into action by means of organized planning. Since I eventually hope to make this blog into a book someday, organization is definitely a must. This blog helps me track my experiment of literally living out self help techniques.
One of my favorite things about Think & Grow Rich, is the way the book is structured. Originally I had hesitation to start this self help challenge with this book. But honestly, I’m glad I did. A lot of the time working a “9 to 5” can come in the way for “literally” living the advice and practices found in a self help book. Hopefully by the completion of this book, I’ll be a better person and will be able to support myself financially without the “9 to 5” gig.
So back to the structure. It’s done with a step by step outlined path towards betterment. Like a rag to riches manual.
This chapter’s plan of action, calls for the formation of a “Master Mind” group. A group that will help you plan and organize for success. This group that should also be knowledgeable in your field. It is something Hill requires is done, and that you meet with your group weekly.
Time to get creative and figure out how I can make this step happen…..
Organized planning seems to be a HUGE focus. The chapter alone is twice as long as any of the other chapters.
Next major take away from this chapter is the importance of being a leader.
- Unwavering courage based upon knowledge of self, and of one’s occupation. No follower wishes to be dominated by a leader very long.
- 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.
- A keen sense of justice. Without a sense of fairness and justice, no leader can command and retain the respect of his followers.
- Definiteness of decision. The man who wavers in his decisions shows that he is not sure of himself. He cannot lead others successfully.
- Definiteness of plans The successful leader must plan his work, and work his plan. A leader who moves by guess work, without practical, definite plans, is comparable to a whip without a rudder. One of the penalties of leadership is the necessity of willingness, upon the part of the leader, t o do more than he requires of his followers.
- 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.
- 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.
- Sympathy and understanding. The successful leader must be in sympathy with his followers. Moreover, he must understand them and their problems.
- Master of detail. Successful leadership calls for mastery of details of the leader’s position.
- Willingness to assume full responsibility. The successful leader must be willing to assume responsibility for the mistakes and the short comings of his followers. If he tries to shift this responsibility, he will not remain the leader. If one of his followers mistakes a mistake and shows himself incompetent, the leader must consider that it is he who failed.
- Cooperation. The successful leader must understand and apply the principle of cooperation effort and be able to induce his followers to do the same. Leadership calls for power, and power calls for cooperation. *Napoleon Hill, Think & Grow Rich
Napoleon Hill goes into further depth about where to apply for jobs, and how to apply so that you don’t just get a job, but you start off “in the middle of the ladder.”
Since, I’m not exactly looking for a corporate job, I won’t be going over these details.
The next point in the chapter, 30 Major Causes for Failure
Personally, I’m a huge fan of Law of attraction, meaning focus on what you want, rather than what you don’t want-and see what happens 😉
However, it is good to know what you shouldn’t want if you are in doubt about what you want.
Here’s the list 😀
How many of these are holding you back?
- Unfavorable hereditary background. There is but little, if anything, which can be done for people who are born with a deficiency in brain power. This philosophy offers but one method of bridging this weakness–through the aid of the Master Mind. Observe with profit, however, that this is the only one of the thirty causes of failure which may not be easily corrected by any individual.
- Lack of a well-defined purpose in life. There is no hope of success for the person who does not have a central purpose, or definite goal at which to aim. 98 or out every 100 of those whom I have analyzed had no such aim. Perhaps this was the major cause of their failure.
- Lack of ambition to aim above mediocrity. We offer no hope for the person who is so indifferent as not to want to get ahead in life, and who is not willing to pay the price.
- Insufficient education. This is a handicap which may be overcome with comparative ease. Experience has proven that the best-educated people are often those who are known as “self-made” or self-educated. It takes more that a college degree to make one a person of education. Any person who is educated is one who has learned to get whatever he wants in life without violating the rights of others. Education consists not so much of knowledge, but of knowledge effectively and persistently applied. Men are paid not merely for what they know, but more particularly for what they do with which they know.
- Lack of self-discipline. Discipline comes through self-control. This means that one must control all negative qualities. Before you can control conditions, you must first control yourself. Self-mastery is the hardest job you will ever tackle. If you do not conquer self, you will be conquered by self. You may see at one and the same time both your best friend and your greatest enemy, by stepping in front of a mirror.
- Ill health. NO person may enjoy outstanding success without good health. Many of the causes of ill health are subject to mastery and control. These, in the main, are: Overeating of foods not conducive to health, Wrong habits of thought, giving expression to negatives, Wrong use of, and overindulgence in sex, Lack of proper physical exercise, An inadequate supply of fresh air, due to improper breathing.
- Unfavorable environmental influences during childhood. “As the twig is bent, so shall the tree grow.” Most people who have criminal tendencies acquire them as the result of bad environment and improper associates during childhood.
- Procrastination. This is one of the most common causes of failure. “Old Man Procrastination” stands within the shadow of every human being, waiting his opportunity to spoil one’s chances of success. Most of us go through life as failures because we are waiting for the “time to be right” to start doing something worthwhile. Do not wait. The time will never be “just right.” Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.
- Lack of persistence. Most of us are good “starters” but poor “finishers” of everything we begin. Moreover, people are prone to give up at the first signs of defeat. There is no substitute for persistence. The person who makes persistence his watchword discovers that “Old Man Failure” finally becomes tired, and makes his departure. Failure cannot cope with persistence.
- Negative personality. There is no hope of success of the person who repels people through a negative personality. Success comes through the application of power, and power is attained through the cooperative efforts of other people. A negative personality will not induce cooperation.
- Lack of controlled sexual urge. Sex energy is the most powerful of all the stimuli which move people into action. Because it is the most powerful of the emotions, it must be controlled through transmutation, and converted into other channels.
- Uncontrolled desire for “something for nothing.” The gambling instinct drives millions of people to failure. Evidence of this may be found in a study of the Wall Street crash of ’29, during which millions of people tried to make money by gambling on stock margins.
- Lack of a well defined power of decision. 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. Where one is found the other may usually be found also. Kill off this pair before they completely “hog-tie” you to the treadmill of failure.
- One or more of the six basic fears. These fears have been analysed for you in a later chapter. They must be mastered before you can market your services effectively.
- Wrong selection of a mate in marriage. This a most common cause of failure. The relationship of marriage brings people intimately into contact. Unless this relationship is harmonious, failure is likely to follow. Moreover, it will be a form of failure that is marked by misery and unhappiness, destroying all signs of ambition.
- Overcaution. The person who takes no chances, generally has to take whatever is left when others are through choosing. Overcaution is as bad as under-caution. Both are extremes to be guarded against. Life itself is filled white the element of chance.
- Wrong selection of associates in business. This is one of the most common causes of failure in business. In marketing personal services, one should use great care to select an employer who will be an inspiration, and who is, himself, intelligent and successful. We emulate those with whom we associate most closely. Pick an employer who is worth emulating.
- Superstition and prejudice. Superstition is a form of fear. It is also a sign of ignorance. Men who succeed keep open minds and are afraid of nothing.
- Wrong selection of a vocation. No man can succeed in a line of endeavor which he does not like. The most essential step in the marketing of personal services is that of selecting an occupation into which you can throw yourself wholeheartedly.
- Lack of concentration of effort. The “jack-of-all-trades” seldom is good at any. Concentrate all of your efforts on the definite chief aim.
- The habit of indiscriminate spending. The spendthrift cannot succeed, mainly because he stands eternally in fear of poverty. From the habit of systematic saving by putting aside a definite percentage of your income. Money in the bank gives one a very safe foundation of courage when bargaining for the sale of personal services. Without money, one must take what one is offered, and be glad to get it.
- Lack of enthusiasm. Without enthusiasm one cannot be convincing. Moreover, enthusiasm is contagious, and the person who has it, under control, is generally welcome in any group of people.
- Intolerance. The person with a “closed” mind on any subject seldom gets ahead. Intolerance means that one has stopped acquiring knowledge. The most damaging forms of intolerance are those connected with religious, racial, and political difference of opinion.
- Intemperance. The most damaging forms of intemperance are connected with eating, strong drink, and sexual activities. Overindulgence in any of these is fatal to success.
- Inability to cooperate with others. more people lose their positions and their big opportunities in life because of this fault than for all other reasons combined. It is a fault which no well-informed businessman or leader will tolerate.
- Possession of power that was not acquired through self-effort. (Sons and daughters of wealthy men, and others who inherit money which they did not earn.) Power in the hands of one who did not acquire it gradually is often fatal in success. Quick riches are more dangerous than poverty.
- Intentional dishonesty. There is no substitute for honesty. One may be temporarily dishonest by force of circumstances over which one has no control, without permanent damage. But, there is no hope for the person who is dishonest by choice. Sooner or later, his deeds will catch up with him, and he will pay by loss of reputation, and perhaps even loss of liberty.
- Egotism and vanity. These qualities serve as red lights which warn others to keep away. They are fatal to success.
- Guessing instead of thinking. Most people are too indifferent or lazy to acquire facts with which to think accurately. They prefer to act on “opinions” created by guesswork or snap judgement.
- Lack of capital. This is a common cause of failure among those who start out in business for the first time without sufficient reserve of capital to absorb the shock of their mistakes, and to carry them over until they have established a reputation.
And there you have it. The ultimate on how to be the most legit person EVER.
I know I’m personally guilty of several of these… A goal of doing this blog/experiment, is to apply these techniques as literally as I can, and see what happens in the long run…
Here’s to a year of being too legit to quit 😉
I’m still keeping up with the check list of self help success provided by Napoleon Hill in Think & Grow Rich. It’s a great feeling to hold yourself accountable. Will power is just like anything else we do in our lives. We need to practice it, foster its growth, and take time to reflect upon it.
In chapter 6 of Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill is about IMAGINATION.
He calls imagination, “the workshop of the mind.” That, “Man’s only limitation,within reason, lies in his development and use of his imagination.”
Napoleon Hill divides imagination into two categories: Synthetic Imagination, and Creative Imagination. The first is where you create something from existing ideas. The latter, is more about intuition and out of nowhere inspiration.
What’s really fun about this chapter, is reading about Hill’s thoughts about inter-connectivity, energy, and the universe. For a book written in 1937, these are some pretty “new age” thoughts.
The takeaway from this chapter is to stay open, imagine in your mind your future situation, and listen to the ques on how to make that happen.
Until next chapter