Johnny Ray Cabuyao, Laguna, Philippines
Will-power and desire, when properly combined, make an irresistible pair. Proverbs 25:28 tells us “Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks will-power.” If I do not have will-power, I will be defenseless. Will-power is defined as the control exerted to do something or restrain impulses. Will-power is the motivation to exercise will. A person with strong will-power will assert decisions even in the face of strong opposition or other contradictory indicators. A person with weak will-power will give in easily. Getting what you or I want takes will-power, whether it means me doing something or others doing things for me. To succeed, this means first I must know what I want (define my desire). Then I must be determined to get it, even in the face of extreme difficulties.
If you are following this book with the intention of applying the knowledge it conveys, your first test as to your persistence will come when you begin to follow the six steps described in the second chapter. This shows me if I am truly teachable or not if I am following through on things. I do these steps, so it is encouraging to step outside of myself and see that I am teachable. Here are the six steps, personalized.
Step One. Fix in my mind the exact amount of money I desire. Be definite as to the amount.
Step Two. Determine exactly what I intend to give in return for the money I desire.
Step Three. Establish a definite date when I intend to possess the money I desire.
Step Four. Create a definite plan for carrying out my desire, and begin at once, whether I am ready or not, to put this plan into action.
Step Five. Write out a clear, concise statement of the amount of money I intend to acquire, name the time limit for its acquisition, state what I intend to give in return for the money, and describe clearly the plan through which I intend to accumulate it.
Step Six. Read my written statement aloud, twice daily, once just before retiring at night, and once after arising in the morning. As I read - see and feel and believe myself already in possession of the money.
It is notable that Napoleon Hill says that we are to test our persistence. How badly do we want it? We can say we want something really bad, however, if we are not taking the actions to achieve it, it’s empty words. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Luke 11:9-10) and also “If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength!” (Proverbs 24:10) - persistence reveals how strong my will-power is and how great my focus and strength truly are. The author is checking me up at this point, because lack of persistence is one of the major causes of failure. Moreover, experience with thousands of people has proved that lack of persistence is a weakness common to the majority of men. It is a weakness which may be overcome by effort.
With PERSISTENCE you will win. This deserves to be said several times over. With power. WITH PERSISTENCE YOU WILL WIN. WITH PERSISTENCE WILL COME SUCCESS. Persistence is action and destroys doubt and builds your faith. Without persistence, you build up procrastination, which kills your business, relationships, and you. With persistence, our music will not die within us.
Self-satisfaction. There is but little remedy for this affliction, and no hope for those who suffer from it. Self-satisfaction is excessive satisfaction of oneself. It could be in their achievements. It is a smug complacency. It is a mind filled with self-approval and pride. When someone is this way, their mind sees themselves as superior to others. Cambridge states that these people do not accept criticism of themselves. To identify this person on the four colors, this is clearly a red. The ego is supremely large and it just doesn’t seem that they are teachable, which is why “there is no hope for those who suffer from it.”
HOW TO DEVELOP PERSISTENCE
There are four simple steps which lead to the habit of PERSISTENCE. They call for no great amount of intelligence, no particular amount of education, and but little time or effort. The necessary steps are:—
Step One: A definite purpose backed by a burning desire for its fulfillment.
Have I defined my purpose and do I have a burning desire for its fulfillment? In other words, have I created a personal mission statement and defined my vision?
Step Two: A definite plan, expressed in continuous action.
Do I have a definite plan of action? Do I express it continuously? In other words, do I take daily action? How much action am I taking? Am I only spending 5 minutes or am I devoting real time to attain my vision (burning desire)?
Step Three: A mind closed tightly against all negative and discouraging influences, including negative suggestions of family, friends, and acquaintances.
Remember, tell the world what you intend to do, but first, show it. You eliminate these negative influences a lot when you simply keep your mouth shut. Ask yourself “If I knew I couldn’t fail, how differently would I live my life?” and use that as motivation to take persistent action.
Step Four: A friendly alliance with one or more people who will encourage you to follow through with both plan and purpose.
Step four goes into the question: how many cooks are in my kitchen? As it is written in Proverbs 15:21 - “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” The problem comes into play when there are people giving bad advice. And so, when there are too many cooks in the kitchen, it gets messy, and really things just don’t get accomplished properly. So it is okay to evaluate the “cooks in the kitchen” or “clean house,” as they say and simply ask “who has your future in mind” and eliminate those who do not have your best interest in heart. Look at it as simply a business decision. Who is renting space in your head for free that shouldn’t be in your head in the first place and evict them. Businesses will have signs in their buildings that state: Authorized Personnel Only. And that is how I am treating my mind. If you are not authorized, you are not allowed inside.