Concentration - the act of focusing the mind upon a given desire until ways and means for its realization have been worked out and successfully put into operation. - Napoleon Hill
Using Auto Suggestion and the Law of Habit spoken of earlier in his book, Mr. Hill says that concentration on your Definite Purpose can make it happen. Using repetition, thinking the same thoughts over and over again will cause you to come up with ways to make it possible.
Your thoughts become your words,
Words become actions
Actions become habits
Habits become character
Character becomes Destiny
Your environment creates your habits, which become a permanent part of your subconscious where it becomes your personality and influences your actions, prejudices, biases and opinions. This is environment that you live or work in. All those things that influence you through sight, hearing, smell, taste or feelings/emotions are part of your environment.
You need to master your habits rather than becoming a slave to them. Good habits are just as easy to create as bad habits. Just keep doing them over and over again. A habit is a "mental path" according to Hill. It is the way you keep doing something over and over again based on the way you think about it. The way to change them is to come up with new thought patterns.
Men's natures are alike, it is their habits that carry them far apart. - Confucius
The Rules of Procedure to form the habits you desire are laid out by Hill.
First - beginning a new habit - put force and enthusiasm into your expression. Feel what you think. Make the path as clear and deep as you can at the beginning so it can be easily seen going forward. In other words put the emotions that you want to experience from this new habit into the habit from the very beginning.
Second - Keep your attention firmly concentrated on building your new path and away from the old paths. Forget the old, concern yourself only with the new ones you are building. Again, put an emotion with the new habit. How will it feel when this is how you do this all the time?
Fourth - Resist the old paths - It will make you stronger to be persistent.
Fifth - Make sure to map out the right path to your definite purpose and go ahead without fear or doubt. Select your goals and make your path lead straight to it.
Through habit, an act repeatedly performed in the same manner has a tendency to become permanent, and eventually we come to perform the act automatically or unconsciously.
Auto suggestion is the tool to create this new habit.
Concentration is the hand that holds the tool.
Habit is the map or blueprint.
Your desired GOAL must be held in your conscious mind faithfully and persistently until it becomes a permanent habit.
Your environment must support this goal. Other parts of your environment include: books, read, associates, community, work you do, country/nation you live in, clothes you wear, songs you sing or listen to, religion, education prior to age 14. Environment is the direct relationship with who we become. If your environment is not providing you with what you want, CHANGE IT! Create in your mind an exact, clear, well developed picture of the environment needed to create your Definite Purpose and then concentrate your mind on this picture until you turn it into reality. Remember that you can only succeed if you define your Definite Purpose and then your environment must include those people who are in harmony with that Definite Purpose.
Every word spoken within your hearing, every sight that reaches your eyes, and every sense impression that you receive through any of the 5 senses influences your thought as surely as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. Thus your environment must be controlled.
And Mr. Hill goes into great detail about keeping every part of your environment concentrated on your Definite Purpose. Your clothes should be appropriate to the end result. Your mental attitude needs to be appropriate to your desired outcome. And he says that the magic key to this success is Concentration. It means the ability to control your attention and focus it on a given problem until you have solved it!
Think the way you wish to think. Control your thoughts and direct them to a definite end. Organize your knowledge into a plan of action that is sound and workable to reach your desired goal.
Concentrate on your Definite Purpose.
Successful concentration depends on Ambition and Desire.
Nothing was ever created that was not first created in the imagination through desire and then transformed into reality through concentration! WHEW!
As I often tell my students, You need to see it, feel it, taste it, smell it to make it happen. Look ahead 1, 3, 5 years even 10 and see yourself as _________________. See the outcome, use your imagination. As Dr. Wayne Dyer says, "You will see it when you believe it". And 2 or more people with the same Definite Purpose can do anything!
Thought is organized energy and concentrating on a single thought gives it even more energy.
Our environment is an extension of our mind. When we change our mind, our life changes. - Dr. Joe Dispenze
So Concentrate on this for a while!
What is it that you are filling yourself up with today? Because whatever you are putting in is what you are in turn putting out!
Wake up on the wrong side of the bed? Are you carrying that thru to the rest of your day? Feeling anxious about what you have to do today? Bored on the job?
Feeling compassion for all people today when reading about floods, famine or distress? How about feeling love for everyone around you? Or having hope for the future and all the great things that it will bring?
Whatever you are filling your cup with is what you will then expect in life and what you will get. So fill up your cup with Compassion, Love, Hope, Positivity, Prosperity and Kindness. Isn't that what you would really rather be having?
It has recently occurred to me that all of the great scholars, lecturers and sages were saying the exact same thing. So it is nothing new or even revolutionary what the newest New Age thinkers are saying because they are saying the exactly what has been said before. It just needs to be said in different ways so that everyone can get it.
It is that what you think you become. If you think you can you can, if you think you can't, you're right too. Whatever you put out is what you will get back. Nothing new. It's all the same and it applies to whatever you put your mind to. It doesn't matter what business you are in - whatever you put out will come back to you.
Napoleon Hill Made it 15 lessons, Jack Canfield made it into Chicken Soup, Steven Covey gave us 7 Habits, Depak Chopra gave us 20 Spiritual Laws and Rhonda Byrne told us The Secret. Wayne Dyer told us to Believe it Before We can See It, while Mike Dooley gives us Infinite Possibilities and Napoleon Hill told us to Think and Grow Rich through the Laws of Success.
It all comes back to the same thing. Heck even the Bible told us about the Golden Rule when Jesus told us to do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Confucius said do not do to other people what you do not want them to do to you. It's the Golden f****** rule! Do unto others as you would have them do to you in the same exact circumstance.
What does this mean? It means you need to think before you do anything. There is that word - THINK. You can know everything about anatomy. You can know everything about physiology. You can know everything about psychology. It all comes down to what you think. And I don't think anyone can really tell us how the mind works. All the neural pathways are indeed in everyone but I believe that our environment, our beliefs, our emotions and everything else about our particular life has an effect on our own personal "wiring".
And why do you think what you think? Because of the way you were raised, the things that were put into your head (the learned things) as you were growing up. We come out of the womb with the universal truths and universal energy and universal knowledge. But then, based on the life and family and government and religion we were born into some of the truths left us. The belief systems that were taught to us by those people and institutions bring us to where we are today. And what we think we become (Buddha). In order to change what you think you need to change some of those beliefs. And the way to do that can be extraordinarily difficult! The "old habits die hard" scenario.
Okay, so it's been a while since I talked about Infinite Possibilities. Have I given up on IP and Thoughts becoming Things? Absolutely not! The things have just started happening that have been in my thoughts. But more about that in another post.
If you got through Lesson 2 about beliefs then you are really ready for this lesson. But to recap, it is your "learned" beliefs that can sometimes get in the way of where you want to be. If you really took a look at those things I mentioned - Life, Money, Love, Success - were the beliefs you have about them yours through experience or did someone tell you that is what they were like? Remember that nothing else affects your thoughts more than your beliefs about certain things. If you think life is hard, then it becomes hard because you have convinced yourself, through your belief system, that it is hard.
So the first thing you have to change are your beliefs for it is these beliefs that influence our thoughts and then our action (or lack of action). SO in order to change our thoughts we need to change our beliefs and the way to do that is to give up on negative thoughts. AND guess what we DO get to chose what we think and believe in order to build your life based on what you want. So by starting to think and speak what you want to believe you being to create new beliefs about how your life can be.
As I have stated before, thoughts build ideas, ideas stir emotions, emotions create action, actions are the physical manifestation of the original thought. Tada! Thoughts become things!
So we are past the thoughts build ideas and now are ready for the emotions that come with those thoughts.
A Man is but the product of his thought. What he thinks, he becomes. - Mahatma GandhiNapoleon Hill says that this lesson is the most import, most interesting and most difficult lesson so far. This is the gist of the entire course and therefore the most interesting. It is the most difficult because it takes you beyond what you think you know. It is the keystone so to speak of the course.
Many of us have heard of the book or seen the movie The Secret. We try to understand that thoughts become things. But do we really?
Think of the airplane, automobile, computers and the internet. All these things began as the thoughts of the people who created the first ones!
Many of our forefathers (and mothers) created the success that was independence by their thoughts of something greater than being ruled by England.
Hill says that to think accurately you must separate facts from just information. There is a lot of information out there but how much of it is true fact. And then the facts need to be separated into two classes - the important or relevant and the unimportant or irrelevant. The facts that are important are the ones that you need, the ones that help you to grow, improve or advance. The facts that are irrelevant may still be actual fact but fall into the trivial, such as gossip, some newspaper articles and TV programs as well as the many emails and facebook comments that come across your computer screen.
The Law of Evidence, according to Hill, is the ability to distinguish between facts and heresay information. "The accurate thinker deals with facts, regardless of how they affect his own interests...". In other words, don't play with the facts in order to achieve your own goals without regard to others. Sometimes there will be setbacks when dealing honestly with your fellow man but the law of averages will always work to your advantage. Always be sure of your facts. The accurate thinker does not belittle others with slander or rumors.
If you find the person you know who appears to accomplish more with less effort you will have found someone who is able to arrange the facts so that he brings to his aid the Law of Increasing Returns. Important and relevant facts are the ones that work toward your Definite Purpose. The facts you search for are determined by what you want to accomplish. And the important ones will help you achieve that Goal. All others are of minor importance, relative to you Goal so don't spend time organizing these.
But creative thought is the evolution of the thinking man. Creative thought allows you to take the facts and use them creatively to achieve your Goals. This is sometimes referred to as "thinking outside the box".
This is an important Lesson...so more coming.
I'll see it when I believe it! -Wayne Dyer
So what are your thoughts about the following things?
Now consider why you think the way you do about them.
These are your beliefs about these things! You may think that what you think about them are just some observations based upon your realities about them, but in actuality they are your beliefs about them and these beliefs will create help to create your reality based on your thoughts about them. Maybe your first thought about life was that it was hard. Maybe it is only hard because you started thinking it was hard. Don't think so? Then why is life easier for some people.
When you start thinking something, no matter if you are "right" or "wrong", helpful or unhelpful, you automatically start thinking similar thoughts. AND those thoughts become the things and events of your life. It is when you understand that where you are in your present life is a direct result of your thoughts and beliefs that you understand that where you need to go first is to those thoughts and beliefs to make a change!
You know, you can't make something happen without first believing that it can happen. The belief in something comes before we make it happen. The Wright Brothers believed in flight long before their first plane actually flew! Belief is why people succeed in sports, music, business and absolutely everything else. Your life won't change until your beliefs about life change. But here's the good news, you can change your beliefs.
Most people think that their beliefs come from their life experiences but where did your life experiences come from? They come from your thoughts!
Let's take the following example: You're driving down the road and all of a sudden your gauges register that your engine is overheating. You pull to the side of the road and phone your significant other about your problem. Two conclusions are made about this episode:
This may not be the best example, but it is an example of how thoughts play into the lives of many people, causing them stress and anxiety in their lives. But people don't see the connection between their beliefs, their thoughts and their experiences. If you look back at things that have happened in your life you might just begin to see the proof that your beliefs and thoughts about something is what made it happen in just such a way.
As I have stated in other posts it is your thoughts that create your reality and now we can add into that mix the belief in something that creates the thoughts. "To master your thoughts, and therefore your life and destiny, you must first master your beliefs." You get to choose what you think and believe and by choosing you build your life.
If you think about 2 positive thoughts and 2 negative thoughts what do these thoughts reveal about your underlying beliefs. If you change these beliefs you can change your thoughts and therefore your life.
Let's break this down into the conscious and sub-conscious mind.
The conscious mind, based on free will - the ability to think whatever we want, can accept or reject thoughts. What this means is that when a negative thought starts you have the ability to reject the negative and turn it into a positive. This is the part of your mind where you are consistently thinking about things. And whatever you consistently think about ultimately gets stored in the sub-conscious mind.
The sub-conscious mind if filled with conditioned or fixed thoughts. These are the things that your conscious mind has thought about for so long that they are now stored and are left to function in every cell of the body. These become habits and they are not able to be rejected unless changed by the conscious mind. This is where the free will comes in again! You can change your thoughts but first you must change your beliefs.
Choose new thoughts, words and behaviors and your life experiences and then your beliefs will change to mirror those changes. There are 3 steps for installing new beliefs. 1. Choose beliefs that serve your life. 2. Claim these beliefs through your thoughts and words. 3. Act as if these beliefs are true every day.
1. Create a list of belief that you'd like to possess. Beliefs about life, yourself, your body, money, love, other people and being successful.
2. After you know what you want to believe, then start thinking and speaking as if you already believed it. I love my life, life is good. I am happy, healthy and prosperous. I am the perfect size. I have abundance. See how it works?
3. Act as if these beliefs are true every day. Live your new beliefs! Act as if they were yours by behaving in ways that reinforce them. Think about them when you get out of bed, when you choose your food, what you will wear or where you will go, who you will be friends with and in every decision that you make.
And remember - sometimes when things are falling apart, they are actually falling into place.
"Happy, successful and wealthy people are proof that you don't have to be blessed, spiritual and perfect, you just have to dream and believe in those dreams." - Mike Dooley
What Napoleon Hill is talking about here is a personality that attracts, not how attractive you are. What he is saying is that your personality is everything about you. Your clothes, face, voice, thoughts, character all go into making you who you are.
First impressions are indeed based on appearance. We can never get past this. The handshake you give. The eye contact that you make with a prospective client, student, customer, employer, employee, friend, roommate, lover, etc. Your body vitality or magnetism or charisma, whatever you call it, is also a part of who you are and the personality that you exude when first meeting someone.
Be genuinely interested in your clients, customer or even co-workers. NO cheap flattery just to make an impression or get ahead. Take an interest in other people and their work, business or profession. Remember again the Golden Rule - if you want people to be interested in you then you need to take an interest in other people.
To develop an attractive personality select those whose character (or qualities) you respect and with to emulate. Imagine yourself with their character and qualities and then visualize yourself becoming like this person.
Each day, find at least one person to praise about something, but be genuine. Get into the habit of looking for and finding the good qualities in others. By finding something good about someone you help them to possibly see the good things in you also.
Using affirmation, speak the affirmation that states the desired qualities you have to develop an attractive personality. This speaking sets into motion the Universal vibration through which these qualities will begin to develop in your subconscious.
One of the best qualities to develop, according to Hill, to have an attractive personality is the ability to speak. (Note to self to watch The King's Speech.) Speech and the way that you express yourself also expresses your personality. Fluency of speech is the ability to speak correctly and is something to be developed.
Another aspect of our personality is the way that we dress and in order to obtain our definite purpose, we need to dress "as if". Now, I'm not saying go out and buy expensive items but at the very least you can "dress of success" at the level that you can afford. My daughters and I make a habit of shopping the sales racks in retail stores and also go to the Salvation Army and Goodwill or consignment stores. You would be amazed at the number of name brand or designer clothes that can be had at these places for just a fraction of their original cost. And it very good condition.
Now I am not saying that certain brands or better than others or that you need to dress against your personality. What I am saying is that in many cases in order to achieve your definite purpose, you may need to make some concessions to first get to that place. Many time once you get there and have made your mark, you will be able to bring your own personality to that place. I also find it hard for someone who does not have the existing personality for a certain profession to change completely for a new profession. But then again, if you want something bad enough.
Napoleon Hill summarized the following as the chief factors of an attractive personality:
Interest yourself in others and speak to them of their good qualities
Develop the ability to speak with force and conviction in both conversation and public speaking.
Clothe yourself in a style become to you and the work you do.
Develop a positive character
Learn how to shake hands to express warmth of feeling and enthusiasm
Attract other people to you by first attracting yourself to them
Remember that your only limitation, within reason, is the one you set up in your own mind.
You will develop the art of being agreeable - you will end up doing business with people you like.
Napoleon Hill actually talks about it as the habit of performing more serivce than paid for.
What he means is the habit of going above an beyond. Doing more than your actual job description and doing your job better than expected allows you to build a reputation as a good employee. He calls it the Law of Increasing Returns.
In my garden I always reap more than I sow. Every individual seed or seedling will produce more vegetables than that original see came from. Of the hundereds of seeds in a tomato each seedling will produce hundreds more.
That is what is represented by this Law. When Henry Ford set his $5/day minimum wage this was more wages than the average person was getting in a factory at that time. But he got more service and better service from his employees because of it. (Amazing to think that today we are starting to set minimum hourly wages at 3 times that amount.)
An example for today are stores that have return policies on goods with no questions asked. This type of thing spreads Goodwill that brings in more clients or customers.
The concept is to make yourself so useful to your employer or customers/clients so they wouldn't think of anyone else for the job or service. Sometimes you just need to do things without expecting payment. This is not the "that's not my job..." mentality.
"Render service to at least one person everyday, for which you neither expect or accept monetary pay." Napoleon Hill
Take the initiative, follow it with agressive action and do more than you are paid for. You need no ones permission to do this. Hand out a free coupon/gift that gives your client/customer one thing, but then offer an upgrade for something even better and see what you results are!
In Lesson 7, Napoleon Hill talks about self-control. He states that lack of self control can lead to the loss of the power needed to achieve your definite purpose. In other words, loss of self control can defeat you. The enthusiasm that you have for a project must balance with the self-control needed to rush too fast into things or the desire to proceed in the face of danger or without regard to others.
If a part of your definite purpose is to be in charge of others then you need to understand that you cannot control others if you cannot control yourself. Sometime we need to wear mental ear muffs. The old adage of just letting things roll off of you rather than to respond.
Hill says that Imagination + a definite plan + self-confidence + action directed through self-control is the way to get to your success.
The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts. Marcus Aurelius
You have a tremendous advantage over the man who does you an injury; you have it within your power to forgive him while he has no such advantage over you. N. Hill
In other words, don't strike back.
Get angry, write it down, throw it out! Get it out of your system and don't hold on to it!
One of my client's once gave me a gift. He called it a God box. It looks like a bank with a slot at the top to put in coins, however it has no way of opening it so whatever you put in it stays in it, never to be seen again. It is the old forgive and forget or as I like to say, "let go, Let God". Now I don't care what your perception of God is, all I am saying is to let go of those things that anger, frustration or worry you. And as you forget about them they will be released. You have control over your thoughts and you can select which thoughts you let in AND the ones you let go!
Self-control = thought control.
Using auto-suggestion and positive, constructive thoughts in harmony with your definite purpose to transform those thoughts into physical reality. Deliberately choosing your thoughts is self-control at its highest level. Thought is the most highly organized function of the mind and we consciously control it.
Have you ever had to change your tone of voice in order to hide your true feelings. For example, have you ever been in an argument with someone and the phone rings? Have you answered the phone and the person on the other end had no idea you were in the middle of a heated argument? Then you know how easy it is - WHEN YOU WANT TO DO IT.
This is Desire! You have the power to think and the power to control your thoughts and direct them.
Enthusiasm - A state of mind that inspires and arouses one to put action into the task at hand.
Have you ever been around anyone who was enthusiastic? Their enthusiasm is contagious and affects everyone with whom they come in contact. These kind of people and "infect" people so easily that afterwards people that were "infected" will say "How did you ever talk me into that?"
By mixing enthusiasm with your work, you will never be bored and the work will not seem hard. The old saying "If you love your job, you will never work a day in your life", comes to mind. Enthusiasm about a task also enables you to perform more work in a given time without becoming tired.
Even if you are currently in a job that you do not enjoy, due to other circumstances, you can still continue to plan and work on ways to achieve your definite purpose that you have set for yourself in life. As you develop enthusiasm about your definite purpose (your long range goal), no matter if you are in position to achieve it at this time, you are still setting the stage for that end result.
Enthusiasm is the sparkle in your eyes, the swing in your gait, the grip of your hand, the irresistible surge of will, and energy to execute your ideas. - Henry Ford
By being enthusiastic, you may pass that enthusiasm to those around you. By doing this and along with the doing, be enthusiastic in your speech and thoughts you are passing the suggestion of enthusiasm to others. What this means is that the way you speak when you are enthusiastic is very different from the way you speak if you are bored when doing a job. Imagine how that translates to the people you are around! Especially if any part of your job includes sales! Being enthusiastic about a product or service you are trying to sell put a very different suggestion into the mind of those to whom you are trying to sell.
SO the action of enthusiasm must be followed with words of enthusiasm in order for it to be able to apply the principle of suggestion. The other part of suggestion has to do with your thoughts, as most things usually do in this book and in many others out there, including The Secret. If your thoughts, your words and your actions are in harmony, you are bound to influence those around you.
Now you may say that you are not in the selling business and that is not part of your definite purpose, but I say that we are all in the selling business when it comes to our definite purpose. You may have to "sell" a significant other on the idea you are presenting, maybe you have to "sell" your current employer on an idea that will get you to where you see yourself in the company, etc. In order to get to your definite purpose you sometimes even have to "sell" yourself on the idea that it is even possible. Being enthusiastic about it is one of the principles that will get you there!
Now I must warn you that as it is with all thoughts, actions and words. Negative ones will come to pass just as readily as positive ones. So doing, saying or thinking things that are negative in an enthusiastic way will bring about the same result!
Every production of genius must be the production of enthusiasm. Disraeli
The human mind is a very marvelous piece of equipment! Much more complicated that any computer. Everything that enters the brain is recorded, whether positive or negative in our unconscious. When it comes from the unconscious into the conscious all the memories that are associated with that thought also come into play. Therefore the old saying "like attracts like" comes into play here through the principle of auto suggestion. The principle of suggestion to others as well as your own auto suggestion should always be associated with positive experiences and with the principle of enthusiasm. Believe in yourself and the definite purpose you have set for yourself.
Paula J. Kaprocki, LMT, BS, CPC
Life Coach, Massage Therapist, Infinite Possibilities Trainer, Author