The Magic Ladder To Success By Napoleon Hill

I read this book a few years ago. I have decided to serialise it in a series of posts here.
Rung #1: A Definite aim in life 

No one would think of gathering together a quantity of sand, lumber, brick, and building materials with the object of building a house without first creating a definite plan for that house, yet experience tells us that 95% of people have no such plan for building a career, which is a thousand times more important than the building of a house. 

Do not overlook the significance of the word definite, because it is the most important word in the phrase “a definite aim in life.” Without this word, the sentence represents what we all have, which is nothing more than a vague aim to succeed. 

How, when, or where we know not, or at least those of us who belong to the 95% class do not. We resemble a ship without a rudder, floundering on the ocean, running around in circles and using up energy that never carries us to shore because we do not aim toward one definite goal and carry on until we reach it. 

You are commencing now to acquire man-power through the organization, classification, and intelligent direction of knowledge, but your first step must be the choice of a definite aim or else you might as well have no power since you will not be able to guide it to a worthwhile objective.

It is necessary not only to have a definite aim in life, but you must also have a definite plan for attaining that aim. 

Therefore, place on paper a written statement of your definite aim and also a written statement, in as much detail as possible, or your plan for attaining that aim. 

There is a psychological reason for insisting that you reduce your definite your definite aim and your plan for attaining it to writing, a reason you will thoroughly understand after you have mastered the subject of auto-suggestion. 

Bear in mind that both your definite aim and your plan for attaining it may be modified from time to time. As a matter of fact, you will be an unusual person if you have the vision and the imagination to see a definite aim now that will be larger enough in its scope to satisfy your ambition a little later on.

The important thing for you to do now is to learn the significance of working always with a definite aim in view, and always a definite plan. 

The principle is one that you must make a part of the process of organizing your faculties, and you must apply it in everything you do, thus forming the habit of systematic, organized effort. 

One year from the time that you write out your first statement of your definite aim in life, you will be surprised, more than likely, at the small scope it covered, for you will then have developed greater vision and greater self confidence. 

 You will be able to accomplish more because of your belief that you can do so and because of your courage in setting a bigger task for yourself, as indicated by your definite aim. This process of education… of educing, expanding from within, drawing out your mind will enable you to think in bigger terms without becoming frightened. 

It will enable you to look upon your definite aim in life with eyes of analysis and synthesis, and to see it not only in it’s entirety but in its component parts, all of which will seem small and insignificant to you. 

Engineers move mountains from one spot to another with no difficulty whatsoever, not by trying to move the whole mountain at one shovelful, you understand, but by shovelful at a time and according to a definite plan. 

The time and the necessary money required with which to build the Panama Canal were correctly estimated years ahead, in fact before a single shovelful of dirt had been removed, because the engineers who built it had learned how to work by definite plans. 

The Canal was a success! It was a success because the men who planned and built it followed the principle that has been laid down for your guidance, as the first rung in this ladder.

 Therefore you can readily see that there is nothing new about this principle. It needs no experiment to prove its accuracy because the successful men of the past have already proved this. Make up your mind now what you wish to do in life, then formulate your plans and commence doing it.

 If you have trouble deciding what your lifework ought to be, you can secure the services of able analysts (not many of them, but there are a few) who can assist you in selecting a lifework that will be in harmony with your natural inclinations, your temperament, physical strength, training, and native ability. 

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