If a person or fellow entrepreneur is trying to make their dreams a reality, they do this by working, and pushing, and learning, and planning, and enduring every obstacle they face, because they know it is getting them one step closer to where they want to be.
This is the mindset the book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.
Originally published in 1937, this book stood the test of time, quickly becoming a classic that every successful entrepreneur turned to (and continues to turn to) in their time of need — myself included.
A book still so influential, that 80 years later, director Scott Cervine — who initially acquired the film rights to this book — with the help of producers Sean Donovan, Karina R. Donovan and Joel Franco, was able to make into a film for a new generation of entrepreneurs to examine.
Sean Donovan believes that this text is “evergreen.”
That this book is the backbone for just about every major fortune that has been created both in and beyond the 20th century. That it’s responsible for the successes of the likes of Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, and so many more — proving that this book and its principles are revolutionary.
In Sean’s eyes, “Every entrepreneur will face a situation in which their entire future depends on the decision they make, so one of the most important principles to rely on is faith. Having faith in themselves and knowing that they are capable of creating a better outcome, regardless of what is going on around them, is incredibly important when continuing to strive forward.”
In addition to Sean’s thoughts, the below are four more game-changing principles that stood out to me while reading Hill’s text both the first time and in subsequent readings:
1) Feel the desire for more
When does a person truly decide that they want to start a successful venture?
Do they watch a video on getting rich quick and then decide to act on its information? Are they traveling down a mountain trail when they suddenly see themselves making it big in business?
Deciding to change your life should not be an easy-come, easy-go decision.
Truth be told, a decision like this can either make your life better or worse. Because of this, give important decisions the time and attention they deserve —never act hastily.
To truly succeed, you must determine what you want, what you intend to put forward to make it happen, and keep pushing forward until your goals are met.
In short, feel the desire for more, but then act on it.
2) By mapping out a plan, goals become a reality
It’s hard to get where you want to go if you don’t have a plan of attack in place …
Makes sense, right?
Creating a goal and determining what you will do to accomplish it provides direction. Without larger, more impactful goals in place, miniature projects often take form, diverting a person’s attention away from what was most important right from the get-go.
Naturally, this accomplishes very little and will slow you down on your path to success. If you know that you are unable to complete everything that must be done, involve your network.
This means creating a team of highly-specialized individuals to carry out some of the tasks you may not be qualified for or simply aren’t capable of doing on your own. Establishing a single, well-defined purpose will keep your team motivated by helping them see the “bigger picture” behind what you’re after — hopefully, something revolutionary.
From there, consider initiating weekly meetings to help ensure proper communication and understanding between everyone involved. With goals and a plan in place, wasted effort is less likely to rear its ugly head.
3) Education does not always guarantee success
In today’s day and age, the wealth of knowledge we have at our fingertips is astonishing. From the how-to YouTube videos and blog posts to influencer autobiographies and custom-built business plans, it should be easy become successful, right?
Watching videos and reading every business or self-help book on the market will get you nowhere if you don’t apply to the knowledge you’ve learned into real-life situations.
Take what you know, and test it. If it fails, tweak things and try again.
If it still doesn’t work, find a new plan. Again, there are tons of resources at your disposal from which you can acquire new learning perspectives. The time we have to test them out, however?
Sadly, there’s not nearly enough of it — now’s the time to discover what works best for you.
4) Persist and achieve
Hand in hand with the desire to improve comes the continual need for personal motivation, especially in the face of unique challenges. It’s simple — persist and achieve; cease and fail.
Though difficult to come to grips with, failure is a necessary evil.
No matter the entrepreneurial genius you look up to most, long before he or she made it big, a lengthy history of failure is sure to be found. People fail over and over again — it’s in every successful person’s DNA.
Circling back to Hill’s text
Did most (if not all) of the items on this list seem at least somewhat familiar?
There’s a reason for it — Hill’s Think and Grow Rich largely brought them into the mainstream.
Though seemingly simple, their layers of depth can only be understood, not by by merely reading Hill’s text, but by making a conscious effort to apply them.
Intrigued? There’s no time like the present to start putting them into practice.
This post is part of our contributor series. The views expressed are the author’s own and not necessarily shared by TNW.