My first job at 14 years old was at a grocery store in Ohio. During this time I remember one of my older co-workers recommending that I read a book called “Think And Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill. Unfortunately at that point in my life I didn’t take the advice, but the title stuck with me through the years. Throughout the journey of my life a few others had recommended it, but for some reason I never took action on starting this book, until last month on my 36th birthday.
I’m not sure why I hadn’t started reading “Think And Grow Rich” until just recently – I read many books and I was definitely interested in reading it, however it just didn’t happen.The timing wasn’t purposeful, as far as I am aware, I literally just started reading it when I had a few moments to myself. I just finished the second chapter and one of the underlying themes is that sometimes one must be ready to receive knowledge, perhaps this is the case.
A Burning Desire
Napoleon Hill discusses the concept of the burning desire which he describes as follows:
“A long while ago, a great warrior had to make a decision which ensured his success on the battlefield. He was about to send his armies against a powerful foe, whose men outnumbered his own. He loaded his soldiers into boats, sailed to the enemy’s country, unloaded soldiers and equipment, then gave the order to burn the ships that had carried them. Addressing his men before the first battle, he said, ‘you see the boats going up in smoke. That means that we cannot leave these shores alive unless we win! We now have no choice – we win or we perish! They won. Every person who wins in any undertaking must be willing to burn his ships and cut all sources of retreat. Only by so doing can one be sure of maintaining that state of mind known as a burning desire to win, essential to success.”
Without burning the ships the temptation to go back is just too great. I had this experience when leaving a corporate career while starting down the entrepreneurial path. This is why entrepreneurship is a full-time job and not a part-time endeavor.
The burning desire, backed by faith is what fuels the entrepreneur to success. In order to achieve success, one must wholeheartedly believe they will achieve success and literally picture what success looks like. This belief or faith, coupled with a singular focused burning desire is what leads to success. I will achieve success because I will sacrifice anything to achieve this objective – this is the essence of the burning desire.
A Process For Success
In terms of wealth creation, the burning desire must be channeled through the following process:
1.Fix in your mind the exact amount of money you desire. It is not sufficient merely to say, “I want plenty of money.” Be definite as to the amount.
2. Determine exactly what you intend to give in return for the money you desire (there is no such reality as “something for nothing.”
3. Establish a definite date when you intend to possess the money you desire.
4. Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire, and begin at once, whether you are ready or not, to put this plan into action.
5. Write out a clear, concise statement of the amount of money you intend to acquire. Name the time limit for its acquisition. State what you intend to give in return for the money, and describe clearly the plan through which you intend to accumulate it.
6. Read your written statement aloud, twice daily, once just before retiring at night, and once after rising in the morning. AS YOUR READ, SEE AND FEEL AND BELIEVE YOURSELF ALREADY IN POSSESSION OF THE MONEY.
According to the author, the most successful businessmen of his time had used this process to achieve success. At a minimum following such a routine would serve to focus an individual like a laser beam on their goal.
Personally I have a goal of building a $100 million dollar business within ten years. I am interested in applying the burning desire to fulfillment of this goal and plan on stepping through this process with my management team. There are some steps we have taken, such as outlining a vision and preliminary forecast to achieve the $100 million annual revenue figure over ten years. The next step is to commit these six steps to writing and step through them in a systematic manner.
The following resources were used for this article:
1. J.R. Sedivy. Vision
2. J.R. Sedivy. Why $100 Million?
3. Napoleon Hill. Think And Grow Rich: