Napoleon Hill studied some of the most affluent men and women of his day, and created his famous formula for moneymaking: “You can learn to acquire vast amounts of wealth by learning to think like the men and women who have already achieved wealth and success”.
“My search lead me to the study of the spiritual forces with which all of us are blessed. And it was in this field that I came upon a clue which has enabled me to help millions of people to find their earthly destinies. I want to describe my discovery in the simplest terms possible, because it will reveal to you why it is true that whatever the mind can conceive and believe the mind can achieve, regardless of how many times you have failed in the past or how lofty your aims and hopes may be.
I got my first fleeting glimpse of the profound law which provided the means by which we may choose our own purpose in life and obtain it while I was being coached by Andrew Carnegie during the organization of the Science of Success Philosophy. I had just finished telling Mr. Carnegie that I feared that he had chosen the wrong person to give the world the first practical philosophy of personal success, because of my youth, my lack of education and my lack of finances. Well, at this point Mr. Carnegie delivered a lecture that I shall never forget because it changed my entire life and paved my way for my helping to change the lives of millions of people, some of them not yet born.
“Let me call your attention to a great power which is under your control,” said Mr. Carnegie, “the power which is greater than poverty, greater than the lack of education, greater than all of your fears and superstitions combined. It is the power to take possession of your own mind and direct it toward whatever end you may desire. “This profound power,” Mr. Carnegie continued, “is the gift of the Creator, and it must of been considered the greatest of all of his gifts to man, because it is the only thing over which man has the complete and unchallengeable right of control and direction.”
“When you speak of your poverty and your lack of education,” Mr. Carnegie explained, “you are simply directing your mind power to attract these undesirable circumstances. Because it is true that whatever your mind feeds upon, your mind attracts to you. Now you see why it is important that you recognize that all success begins with definiteness of purpose, with a clear picture in your mind of precisely what you want from life.”
Then, Mr. Carnegie continued his speech with a description of a great universal truth which made such an impact upon my mind that I began then and there to give myself a new outlook on life and I set up for myself a goal so far above my previous achievements, that it shocked my friends and relatives when they heard about it.
“Everyone,” said Mr. Carnegie, “comes to the earth plane blessed with the priviledge of controlling his mind power and directing it towards whatever ends he may choose. But,” he continued, “everyone brings over with him at birth the equivalent of two sealed envelopes, one of which is clearly labeled: The Riches you may enjoy if you take possession of your own mind and direct it to ends of your own choice. And the other is labelled: The Penalties you must pay if you neglect to take possession your mind and direct it.”
“And now, let me reveal to you,” said Mr. Carnegie, “the contents of those two sealed envelopes. In the one labeled Riches is this list of blessings:
1) Sound health.
2) Peace of mind.
3) A labor of love of your own choice.
4) Freedom from fear and worry.
5) A positive mental attitude.
6) Material riches of your own choice and quantity.”
“In the sealed envelope labeled Penalties,” Mr. Carnegie continued, “is this list of the prices one must pay for neglecting to take possession of one’s own mind:
1) Ill health.
2) Fear and worry.
3) Indecision and doubt.
4) Frustration and discouragement through out life.
5) Poverty and want.
6) And a whole flock of evils consisting of envy, greed, jealousy, anger, hatred and superstition.”