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Books: The Power of Concentration

Everyone has two natures. One wants us to advance and the other

wants to pull us back. The one that we cultivate and concentrate

on decides what we are at the end. Both natures are trying to

gain control. The will alone decides the issue. A man by one

supreme effort of the will may change his whole career and almost

accomplish miracles. You may be that man. You can be if you Will

to be, for Will can find a way or make

I could easily fill a book, of cases where men plodding along in

a matter-of-fact way, were all at once aroused and as if

awakening from a slumber they developed the possibilities within

them and from that time on were different persons. You alone can

decide when the turning point will come. It is a matter of choice

whether we allow our diviner self to control us or whether we

will be controlled by the brute within us. No man has to do

anything he does not want to do. He is therefore the director of

his life if he wills to be. What we are to do, is the result of

our training. We are like putty, and can be completely controlled

by our will power.

Habit is a matter of acquirement. You hear people say: "He comes

by this or that naturally, a chip off the old block," meaning

that he is only doing what his parents did. This is quite often

the case, but there is no reason for it, for a person can break a

habit just the moment he masters the "I will." A man may have

been a "good-for-nothing" all his life up to this very minute,

but from this time on he begins to amount to something. Even old

men have suddenly changed and accomplished wonders. "I lost my

opportunity," says one. That may be true, but by sheer force of

will, we can find a way to bring us another opportunity. There is

no truth in the saying that opportunity knocks at our door but

once in a lifetime. The fact is, opportunity never seeks us; we

must seek it. What usually turns out to be one man's opportunity,

was another man's loss. In this day one man's brain is matched

against another's. It is often the quickness of brain action that

determines the result. One man thinks "I will do it," but while

he procrastinates the other goes ahead and does the work. They

both have the same opportunity. The one will complain of his lost

chance. But it should teach him a lesson, and it will, if he is

seeking the path that leads to success.

Many persons read good books, but say they do not get much good

out of them. They do not realize that all any book or any lesson

course can do is to awaken them to their possibilities; to

stimulate them to use their will power. You may teach a person

from now until doom's day, but that person will only know what he

learns himself. "You can lead him to the fountain, but you can't

make him drink."

One of the most beneficial practices I know of is that of looking

for the good in everyone and everything, for there is good in all

things. We encourage a person by seeing his good qualities and we

also help ourselves by looking for them. We gain their good

wishes, a most valuable asset sometimes. We get back what we give

out. The time comes when most all of us need encouragement; need

buoying up. So form the habit of encouraging others, and you will

find it a wonderful tonic for both those encouraged and yourself,

for you will get back encouraging and uplifting thoughts.

Life furnishes us the opportunity to improve. But whether we do

it or not depends upon how near we live up to what is expected of

us. The first of each month, a person should sit down and examine

the progress he has made. If he has not come up to "expectations"

he should discover the reason, and by extra exertion measure up

to what is demanded next time. Every time that we fall behind

what we planned to do, we lose just so much for that time is gone

forever. We may find a reason for doing it, but most excuses are

poor substitutes for action. Most things are possible. Ours may

be a hard task, but the harder the task, the greater the reward.

It is the difficult things that really develop us, anything that

requires only a small effort, utilizes very few of our faculties,

and yields a scanty harvest of achievement. So do not shrink from

a hard task, for to accomplish one of these will often bring us

more good than a dozen lesser triumphs.

I know that every man that is willing to pay the price can be a

success. The price is not in money, but in effort. The first

essential quality for success is the desire to do--to be

something. The next thing is to learn how to do it; the next to

carry it into execution. The man that is the best able to

accomplish anything is the one with a broad mind; the man that

has acquired knowledge, that may, it is true, be foreign to this

particular case, but is, nevertheless, of some value in all

cases. So the man that wants to be successful must be liberal; he

must acquire all the knowledge that he can; he must be well

posted not only in one branch of his business but in every part

of it. Such a man achieves success.

The secret of success is to try always to improve yourself no

matter where you are or what your position. Learn all you can.

Don't see how little you can do, but how much you can do. Such a

man will always be in demand, for he establishes the reputation

of being a hustler. There is always room for him because

progressive firms never let a hustler leave their employment if

they can help it.

The man that reaches the top is the gritty, plucky, hard worker

and never the timid, uncertain, slow worker. An untried man is

seldom put in a position of responsibility and power. The man

selected is one that has done something, achieved results in some

line, or taken the lead in his department. He is placed there

because of his reputation of putting vigor and virility into his

efforts, and because he has previously shown that he has pluck

and determination.

The man that is chosen at the crucial time is not usually a

genius; he does not possess any more talent than others, but he

has learned that results can only be produced by untiring

concentrated effort. That "miracles," in business do not just

"happen." He knows that the only way they will happen is by

sticking to a proposition and seeing it through. That is the only

secret of why some succeed and others fail. The successful man

gets used to seeing things accomplished and always feels sure of

success. The man that is a failure gets used to seeing failure,

expects it and attracts it to him.

It is my opinion that with the right kind of training every man

could be a success. It is really a shame that so many men and

women, rich in ability and talent, are allowed to go to waste, so

to speak. Some day I hope to see a millionaire philanthropist

start a school for the training of failures. I am sure he could

not put his money to a better use. In a year's time the science

of practical psychology could do wonders for him. He could have

agencies on the lookout for men that had lost their grip on

themselves; that had through indisposition weakened their will;

that through some sorrow or misfortune had become discouraged. At

first all they need is a little help to get them back on their

feet, but usually they get a knock downwards instead. The result

is that their latent powers never develop and both they and the

world are the losers. I trust that in the near future, someone

will heed the opportunity of using some of his millions in

arousing men that have begun to falter. All they need to be shown

is that there is within them an omnipotent source that is ready

to aid them, providing they will make use of it. Their minds only

have to be turned from despair to hope to make them regain their


When a man loses his grip today, he must win his redemption by

his own will. He will get little encouragement or advice of an

inspiring nature. He must usually regain the right road alone. He

must stop dissipating his energies and turn his attention to

building a useful career. Today we must conquer our weakening

tendencies alone. Don't expect anyone to help you. Just take one

big brace, make firm resolutions, and resolve to conquer your

weaknesses and vices. Really none can do this for you. They can

encourage you; that is all.

I can think of nothing, but lack of health, that should interfere

with one becoming successful. There is no other handicap that you

should not be able to overcome. To overcome a handicap, all that

it is necessary to do is to use more determination and grit and


The man with grit and will, may be poor today and wealthy in a

few years; will power is a better asset than money; Will will

carry you over chasms of failure, if you but give it the chance.

The men that have risen to the highest positions have usually had

to gain their victories against big odds. Think of the hardships

many of our inventors have gone through before they became a

success. Usually they have been very much misunderstood by

relatives and friends. Very often they did not have the bare

necessities of life, yet, by sheer determination and resolute

courage, they managed to exist somehow until they perfected their

inventions, which afterwards greatly helped in bettering the

condition of others.

Everyone really wants to do something, but there are few that

will put forward the needed effort to make the necessary

sacrifice to secure it. There is only one way to accomplish

anything and that is to go ahead and do it. A man may accomplish

almost anything today, if he just sets his heart on doing it and

lets nothing interfere with his progress. Obstacles are quickly

overcome by the man that sets out to accomplish his heart's

desire. The "bigger" the man, the smaller the obstacle appears.

The "smaller" the man the greater the obstacle appears. Always

look at the advantage you gain by overcoming obstacles, and it

will give you the needed courage for their conquest.

Do not expect that you will always have easy sailing. Parts of

your journey are likely to be rough. Don't let the rough places

put you out of commission. Keep on with the journey. Just the way

you weather the storm shows what material you are made of. Never

sit down and complain of the rough places, but think how nice the

pleasant stretches were. View with delight the smooth plains that

are in front of you.

Do not let a setback stop you. Think of it as a mere incident

that has to be overcome before you can reach your goal.