Welcome to the conclusion of this special three part series commemorating the 21st Century Edition of Napoleon Hill’s landmark work, “Law of Success,” which reveals 17 Principles of Success that can help take your career and life to the next level. These are proven principles based on Hill’s 25 years of research personally studying the lives of over 500 of the world’s greatest achievers.
Law of Success Part I and Part II covered the first 11 of these principles. (To read Part I and Part II, visit: http://tinyurl.com/3d3loq). Law of Success Part III will now conclude with the remaining 6 of these valuable, time-tested principles which can help you succeed in all areas of your life. Enjoy:
Principle # 12: Concentration
“Concentration is the act of focusing the mind on a given desire until ways and means for its realization have been worked out and successfully put into operation.” – Napoleon Hill
In this age of mass communications, we are beginning to face a global epidemic of mass distraction that is becoming dangerous – and in some cases lethal. (The rising pedestrian and motor vehicle driver deaths due to the host of electronic distractions is just one sad example).
The Weapons of Mass Distraction available to us are just overwhelming: email, cell phones, pagers, text messaging, video games, GPS navigational systems, video games, DVD players, TV, web cams, blackberries, faxes, ipods, and the explosion of social networking sites, just to name a few. (When used intelligently these tools can be powerful, but when used ineffectively, they become what I call, “Weapons of Mass Distraction!”
For concentration to be effective, Hill maintains that it is vitally important to keep your mind focused on ONE subject until you’ve mastered it; to focus on ONE given problem until you’ve solved that problem.
What I find helps is starting a task with a burst of energy and enthusiasm which will provide the momentum to complete the task successfully. Just watch Olympic sprinters at the start of a race and you’ll know what I mean.
Finally, in this age of sensory overload, some sensory deprivation might be in order. Hill recommends that you set some time everyday where you can enter a quiet place, close your eyes, and put your fingers in your ears, blocking all light and sound, and just repeat your chief aim and see yourself in full possession of the object of your aim.
Just practicing this simple technique everyday will help you concentrate on doing the important tasks that will eventually lead to a quantum breakthrough in your life.
Principle # 13: Cooperation
“Cooperation is the foundation of all successful leadership.” – Napoleon Hill
According to Hill, there are two forms of cooperation: 1). The cooperation between a group alliance Master Mind (which was covered in my Law of Success Part I overview) to achieve a desired end, and 2). The cooperation between the conscious and subconscious minds to draw upon creative intelligence (a theme that continues throughout this overview).
Power is developed through organized effort. And for any organized effort to be successful, the harmonious cooperation of people focused on a singular purpose is required.
Harmony is the key. And it would serve you well to study the main personality types of people before forming a team so you can bring together people who compliment each other rather than compete with each other. (“What Type Am I” by Renee Baron is a good first book to understanding personality types).
One thing in the “Law of Success” that really struck me as very powerful was an important observation that Napoleon Hill made: “A great leader is one who understands how to create a “motivating objective” that will be accepted with enthusiasm by every member of [the] group…Most people will work harder for the attainment of an ideal than they will for money.”
What is your company’s or team’s “motivating objective” or ideal? Figure that one out and the wings of cooperation will carry you and your team members to new heights!
Principle # 14: Profiting by Failure
“If you want to increase your success rate, double your failure rate.” -Thomas Watson, Sr. Founder of IBM
Profiting from failure is an overdone topic in the field of personal development so I won’t spend too much time on this principle. It’s overdone for the very reason that there’s much truth in the idea of people reaching higher levels of success by persevering and learning from failure instead of quitting. It’s no accident that John D. Rockefeller felt that perseverance is the single most important quality to achieving success.
I’ve observed over the years that success comes to leaders in almost direct proportion to the amount of adversity and failures they’ve overcome and learned from in life.
That old cliché, ‘if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again’ applies here. Of course, I’m not saying you necessarily keep on doing the same thing expecting the same results (another definition for insanity).
Seek counselors and mentors that you can trust to help evaluate the effectiveness of your plans. Explore the reasons that are limiting your success by asking them how they see you limiting yourself.
If your first plan to achieving your chief aim in life does not succeed, than change it! And keep on changing it until you’ve reached your target, just as an airplane makes thousands of adjustments and flight corrections before reaching its destination.
Principle # 15: Tolerance
“Minds are like parachutes; they work best when open.” – Lord Thomas Dewar
If we adopt a closed mind we stop acquiring knowledge. And natural law states that we are either growing or dying.
I don’t like the word ‘tolerance.’ I much rather prefer mbracing new ideas and having an insatiable curiosity for learning other people’s customs, belief systems, and unique perspectives. I look at it as an adventure!
Finding ways to harness cultural differences within teams and organizations will be the new currency in an increasingly globalized economy.
Principle # 16: The Golden Rule
Napoleon Hill recognized that the frivolous use of power from the knowledge that is being shared with you will only backfire and be destructive to self and others. Selfish pursuit of your chief aim without regard for others will eventually come back to haunt you.
We reap what we sow. What goes around comes around. Therefore, the Golden Rule is: do unto others as you’d have done unto you. Before doing anything, ask yourself if it will benefit or hurt the person involved.
It’s easy to be self-centered. To transcend self, think more of what the other person wants and feels before acting.
See the good in others. Catch people doing things right instead of always looking for the wrong. Kindness and justice toward others goes a long way in establishing successful business and personal relationships. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said: “Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great.”
Hill takes us deeper with the Golden Rule philosophy when he said, “think of others as you’d wish them to think of you.” Live this philosophy and your life will be enriched in many unforeseen ways.
Principle # 17: The Universal Law of Cosmic Habitforce
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle
The Universal Law of Cosmic Habitforce is that intangible, unseen force which is made tangible and visible in nature. Just observe nature and you will experience Cosmic Habitforce in action.
When you fix in your mind a purpose consciousness focused on your chief aim in life through repetition of thoughts and deeds, Cosmic Habitforce will take over and carry it to its logical conclusion, just as an acorn seed will always produce an oak tree through proper care and nurturing.
It takes constant vigilance, determination, and willpower to maintain that purpose consciousness, but eventually Cosmic Habitforce will always bear fruit and your life will be richly rewarded.
In closing, I’d like to point out that at the beginning of every chapter in Napoleon Hill’s “Law of Success” are the words: “You can do it if you believe you can!”
It’s that simple. I’m not saying it’s easy, but it really is that simple. Mahatma Gandhi once said, “If I believe I cannot do something, it makes me incapable of doing it. But when I believe I can, then I acquire the ability to do it even if I didn’t have it in the beginning.”
Believe in yourself! Believe you can do it and move forward this day with faith and confidence. Many blessings to you along your journey.
I hope that you’ve benefited from reading this series and I’d like to encourage you to share these important principles with your friends, family, and associates. I’d also like to highly recommend getting a copy of Napoleon Hill’s “Law of Success: 21st Century Edition” to add to your personal library.