– Erich Fromm
We’re defined by WHAT we HAVE or WHO we ARE.
We’re defined by WHAT we HAVE or WHO we ARE.
Based on Napoleon Hill’s famed Laws of Success, Think and Grow Rich represents the distilled wisdom of distinguished men of great wealth and achievement. Andrew Carnegie’s magic formula for success was the direct inspiration for this book. Hill’s “secrets” are founded in universal law and principles.
Originally published in 1937, it has been characterized as one of the most influential books of all time in pointing the way to personal achievement.
W. Clement Stone wrote “more men and women have been motivated to achieve success because of reading Think and Grow Rich than any other book written by a living author.”
Following is a story Napoleon Hill uses to underscore a number of the key principles of Think and Grow Rich:
The following story is quoted from the book. The (parenthesis) are mine – Tom
He needed a million dollars (Specificity) to put this project across. Where was he to lay his hands on so large a sum of money? That was the question that absorbed most of this ambitious young preacher’s thoughts. He turned it over and over in his mind until it became a consuming obsession with him. Dr. Gunsaulus recognized, as do all who succeed in life, that definiteness of purpose is the starting point. He also recognized that definiteness of purpose takes on animation, life, and power when backed by a burning desire to translate that purpose into material equivalent.
In his own words:
“For nearly two years, I had been thinking but I had done nothing but think! The time had come for action!“
“I made up my mind then and there that I would get the necessary million dollars within a week. How? I was not concerned about that. The main thing of importance was the decision to get the money within a specific time, a strange feeling of assurance came over me — such as I had never before experienced. Something inside me seemed to say, “Why didn’t you reach that decision a long time ago? The money was waiting for you all the time!”
“Things began to happen in a hurry. I called the newspapers and announced that I would preach a sermon the following morning entitled ‘What I Would Do If I Had a Million Dollars’.
“I went to work on the sermon immediately. But I must tell you frankly, the task was not difficult because I had been preparing this sermon for almost two years.”
“Long before midnight, I finished writing the sermon. I went to bed and slept with a feeling of confidence, for I could see myself already in possession of a million dollars. (Visualization!)
“The next morning I rose early, went into the bathroom, read the sermon, and then knelt and asked that my sermon might come to the attention of someone who would supply the needed money. In my excitement, I walked out without my sermon and did not discover the oversight until I was in my pulpit and ready to begin delivering it.”
“It was too late to go back for my notes, and what a blessing that I couldn’t. Instead, my own subconscious mind yielded the material I needed. When I arose to begin my sermon, I closed my eyes and spoke with all my heart and soul of my dreams. I not only talked to my audience, but I fancied that I also talked to God. I told what I would with a million dollars if that amount were placed in my hands. I described the plan I had in mind for organizing a great educational institution, where young people would learn to do practical things, and at the same time, develop their minds. (The Ask!!!)
“When I finished and sat down, a man slowly arose form his seat about three rows from the rear and made his way toward the pulpit. I wondered what he was going to do. He came into the pulpit, extended his hand, and said, ‘Reverend, I liked your sermon. I believe you can do everything you said you would if you had a million dollars. To prove that I believe in you and your sermon, if you will come to my office tomorrow morning, (The Response!!!) I will give you the million dollars. My name is Philip D. Armour.”
Young Gunsaulus went to Mr. Armour’s office and the million dollars was presented to him. With the money, he founded the Armour Institute of Technology (now known as the Illinois Institute of Technology).
This is a special time and an obvious week of Gratitude and Thanksgiving.
Note: Every year I try to share a Thanksgiving message with our Tribe/Community. Some of this ‘recycled’ from previous years because of the timeless nature of these thoughts.
Three things to think about this Thanksgiving and Holiday Season:
For the first half of my life (30+ years), my understanding of wealth was the same as all my friends, business associates and the general public. ‘WEALTH’ meant you had a lot of money.
Then I found this definition and it allowed me to become one of the ‘WEALTHIEST’ people in the world.
Here’s a simple test of your ‘WEALTH.’ Write down a list of all the things that you truly VALUE. Then, put a ‘COST’ (an actual dollar figure) next to everything on the list.
Most of you will look at the list and realize that the things that you truly VALUE end up COSTING NOTHING!
Bob and Melinda Blanchard, in their wonderful entrepreneurial book Live What You Love, have a great line: “It only matters if it BREATHES.”
My own VALUE LIST is filled with simple things that are alive … family time, adventures with the grandkids, health, friends, business partners, etc. … and, some that are not … a great book, a good cup of coffee, nature, the sun, the ocean, the mountains, a boxing workout, yoga and a ride on the Harley.
Here’s the pretty obvious point: ‘WEALTH’, no matter how you define it, is not about ‘money.’ Money is just ‘worthless wampum’ in the grand scheme of life.
Clearly, we need to provide ourselves and family with food, shelter, clothing, etc. But if the accumulation of money, a higher salary or how much you can put in your bank or your portfolio is your measurement for success or happiness … I’m guessing you’ll be doing that ‘camel through the eye of the needle’ thing at the end of your life.
Robert Allen has a great quote, “If a man with many riches suddenly loses all of his money and then jumps out of a window, then, that man was never truly wealthy.”
In an old ODE magazine (which has now been renamed the OPTIMIST), there was an entire issue around this idea of ‘money’. One of the best lines was a simple statement: “It’s not about MONEY. It’s what you DO with your money.”
Special Note: I’m an entrepreneur. I’m all about financial freedom. I want to be able to take care of my family, travel, live on the farm and much more. I just don’t believe that money is the scorecard or measurement of wealth or success.
The Thanksgiving and holiday season is a great opportunity to think of WEALTH as an ABUNDANCE OF THINGS THAT YOU VALUE… and enjoy your ‘WEALTH’.
I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately on this whole idea of ‘Gratitude’. Mindfulness. Meaning. Purpose. And more. It is particularly powerful in the mind-body relation, especially keeping some kind of gratitude journal.
Take a little bit of time each day to remind yourself of the good things and the things for which you are most grateful.
I’ve had the privilege of watching thousands of people experience serious ‘giving‘. I’ve also watched many of these people literally move from success to significance. While I don’t exactly understand how it works, I know that giving brings much more happiness than receiving.
There’s a great line from a country song:
“It’s not what you take with you … when you leave the world behind.”
“It’s what you leave behind you … when you leave this world behind you.”
I believe all of three of these thoughts help us make a life, not a living. There’s no better time of the year than now to share with others.
From all of us at For Impact and The Suddes Group, we wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving and great holiday season.
Special Note: Every year I share these 3 stories that you may want to share with your children/grandchildren or family. THE HAPPY PRINCE is a great story/fable. THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD are seen through the eyes of a child. The third is a very powerful parable about giving called the SEA OF GALILEE.
Life and work are hectic. Here is a simple reminder to LIVE and BE.
We are human BE-ings, not human DO-ings.
Seems like we’re always encouraging you to Take Action, Just Ask, Just Visit, Just DO Something…
But, it’s also important to just BE:
BE present during your present–ations.
BE in the moment, with family, friends, associates.
BE yourself, authentic in every way.
BE an entrepreneur, at least in spirit.
(From the book The Way of Adventure by Jeff Salz)
Discovery is never THE goal for a visit.
When I hear, “It’s just a discovery visit” or, “We’re only meeting to do discovery,” I cringe. To me this is like saying, “We’re just getting together to be authentic.”
Discovery is part of our presentation framework. It’s something we do (ALWAYS).
It’s not THE goal.
To be clear, often we visit and do discovery – with no ask. But that’s not the goal. The goal is to maximize the relationship at this given moment! The goal is to engage around our impact with such passion, energy and enthusiasm that the person says, “Wow!!! GREAT!!! HOW CAN I HELP?!?!”
You would never reply, “It’s great that you want to help! Thank you! But today I am only here to do discovery. Yes, there are lives we could be saving, changing or impacting with your immediate help but, you see… I’m only here to do discovery!”
“It’s just a discovery visit” is incompatible with the For Impact Point of View: we shouldn’t be doing this work (the programs, the fundraising… any of it) if we aren’t having an IMPACT, if we aren’t changing, saving or impacting lives.
Last week we were with the New Jersey AFP at its annual Conference on Philanthropy. The conference theme was STORY – something we at The Suddes Group are pretty passionate about!
My basic message:
My thanks and kudos to the NJ AFP leadership. We speak at conferences all over the world and this was one of the best programmed and organized gatherings I can remember.
I was reading an article about #1 Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney – He’s a good, young coach full of pithy aphorisms.
I never thought I would be quoting a Clemson coach (!) but want to credit him with B.Y.O.E.
“B.Y.O.E. BRING YOUR OWN ENTHUSIASM.” Suddes
Think about this! If you don’t bring it, no one else will.
B.Y.O.E. at your board meetings.
B.Y.O.E. at all your visits and presentations.
B.Y.O.E. with your team/staff.
Again, if you don’t bring it, who will?
Here’s a simple question: Would Apple or Microsoft or Starbucks (or any other company) ask ‘VOLUNTEERS’ to do their ‘SALES’?
Just the idea of the word ‘SOLICITATION’ (the implication of which I cannot go into in a PG-13 document), should be enough to make you give up on this 1950’s “Peer-To-Peer Solicitation” model!
Instead, a PROFESSIONAL PRESENTATION involves PROFESSIONAL STAFF engaged in CONVERSATION and DIALOGUE with a goal of MAXIMIZING THE RELATIONSHIP! It’s a PROFESSIONAL PERFORMANCE with PROFESSIONAL FOLLOW-UP.
Note: In the Old Model, a typical ‘ask’ by a peer (to a peer) goes “I have your (3 x 5) card. Can you give something? Just send it in.” WOW! Clear. Concise. Compelling. (NOT!)
Here are 7 pretty solid reasons not to use VOLUNTEERS to make SOLO SOLICITATIONS:
Volunteer Leaders, Board Members and Current Investors are all a huge part of the TEAM SELLING process. GREAT VOLUNTEER LEADERS and GREAT BOARD MEMBERS are literally worth their weight in gold. They should be used before, during and after the VISIT but, they should never be used ALONE!
*Interesting: The word ‘voluntary’ is defined as: ‘organ solo played in church before, during or after a service.’