If you’ve read anything about success, you no doubt have heard of Napoleon Hill. He wrote the famous book “Think and Grow Rich” based on his interviews in the 1940s based on interviews with Andrew Carnegie and Henry Ford to name but a few.
Here are seven keys he maintained were key to building self-confidence, a key to success. (I just sent this recently to my own young adult sons.)
Hill’s Seven Steps to Self-Confidence:
- I know that I have the ability to accomplish all that I undertake. I know that to succeed, I have only to establish this belief in myself and follow it with vigorous, aggressive action. I will establish it.(Note: Here, Hill is reinforcing the importance of believing in yourself.)
- I realize that my thoughts eventually reproduce themselves in material form and substance and become real in the physical state. Therefore, I will concentrate upon the daily task of thinking of the person I intend to be and of drawing a mental picture of this person and of transforming this picture into reality.(Note: Here, Hill says to describe in detail your “chief aim” or the life work you have selected.)
- I am studying with the firm intention of mastering the fundamental principles through which I may attract to me the desirable things of life. Through this study, I am becoming more self-reliant and more cheerful. I am developing more sympathy for my fellow man, and I am becoming stronger, both mentally and physically. I am learning to smile that smile that plays upon the heart as well as on the lips.
- I am mastering and overpowering the habit of starting something that I do not finish. From this time forward, I will first plan all that I wish to do, making a clear mental picture of it, and then I will let nothing interfere with my plans until I have developed them into realities.(Note: A simple but sometimes hard lesson to follow: make plans and don’t give up until you’ve accomplished your goal. For anyone who wants success in life, this is critical.)
- I have clearly mapped out and planned the work that I intend to follow for the ensuing five years. I have set a price upon my services for each of the five years, a price that I intend to command through strict application of the principle of efficient, satisfactory service!
- I fully realize that genuine success will come only through strict application of the “Golden Rule” principles. I will, therefore, engage in no transaction which does not benefit alike all who participate in it. I will succeed by attracting to me the forces that I wish to use. I will induce others to serve me because of my willingness to serve them. I will gain the friendship of my fellow men because of my kindness and my willingness to be a friend. I will eliminate from my mind fear by developing in its place courage. I will eliminate skepticism by developing faith. I will eliminate hatred and cynicism by developing love for humanity.(Note: Treat others as you want to be treated yourself.)
- I will learn to stand upon my feet and express myself in clear, concise, and simple language, and to speak with force and enthusiasm, in a matter that will carry conviction. I will cause others to become interested in me, because I will first become interested in them. I will eliminate selfishness and develop in its place the spirit of service.(Note: Speak with clarity and enthusiasm. Ask questions and listen. Take a genuine interest in helping others.)
Hill says you don’t have to follow the above seven points word for word. In fact, he says you can write an entirely new version if you prefer. Think of the above as a blueprint of the person you intend to be.
With this chart, you’ll have a guide for embarking on a great career and the self-confidence to do what’s necessary to be successful. For more messages about success, go here.