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4.5 out of 5 stars
Think and Grow Rich: The Original Classic
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127 of 132 people found the following review helpful
on 1 June 2005
I have owned this book for years, but I recently have discovered another, newer version that is far superior. It is "Think and Grow Rich!: The Original Version, Restored and Revised" published by Aventine Press. For one thing it is a bigger book, both in size and in pages (412). It turns out that the book that this review is about is an abridged version of the original, something I never knew in all the times I have read it over the years. This smaller version, while good, contains nothing like the additional information in the "Restored and Revised" version, which I heard 2002 World Snooker Champion Peter Ebdon speaking about. There is just a wealth of fascinating facts and information in the back of the book. In the older book (the rather plain, smaller "Think and Grow Rich" this review concerns), the print is difficult to read, there is little space for jotting notes. The newer revised version reads better and by comparison is a far more useful learning instrument. Napoleon Hill's work is probably the most important ever done, anywhere in the world, in the motivational and self-improvement field. Whichever version you read, it will change your life forever, for the better.
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112 of 118 people found the following review helpful
on 6 May 2012
I cannot completely explain what this book has done for me, or how it has done it, but I'll have a go.

After you've read this I seriously recommend reading `Why People Fail' by Siimon Reynolds.

I'm a student and since reading this book, I have done the following:

-Gained 10lbs of muscle and lost 10lbs of fat.
-Learned everything I need to know about health, exercise and nutrition.
-Started waking up at 6am and arriving at my studio an hour early.
-Started meditating.
-Started visualising myself being successful every morning.
-Started stretching every morning.
-Started studying in depth; success, self actualisation, self improvement, psychology, philosophy, behavioural economics, social dynamics...essentially, anything that is about what makes people tick and what it means to be human.
-Learned to speed read and have gone from reading 150 words a minute to 600 words a minute.
-Learned about etiquette, fine dining and table manners.
-Stopped spending money on things I don't need.
-Saved £2000 for when I graduate and look for a job.
-Improved my cooking abilities.
-Stopped watching TV.
-Started reading at least 1 new book a week.
-Stopped being late to work and social events.
-Gone from sleeping 8-9 hours a night to 6 hours a night by learning about how to improve quality of sleep.
-Improved my self-confidence and my social skills.
-Improved my public speaking.
-Made dozens of contacts in the industry I intend to work in.
-Have contacted, shared my work with and become friendly with the most famous, respected and knowledgeable people in my industry.
-Figured out who I am, what I want and how and when I'm going to get it.
-Pursued my hobbies.
-Started taking risks in my work and my day-to-day life.
-Had my dissertation referenced in a book by a leading author.
-Started making daily, weekly and monthly to do lists that I actually do.
-Started listening to classical music.
-Have created some of the best work and written some of the best content of my life.
-Figured out what I was looking for in life, new friends and girlfriends.

The list really does go on. The reason I list these things is because it's the fastest, and the least corny or cliché way to communicate what this book does for you.

If you read and listen to it, believe it, understand it and actually follow the advice implemented on a daily basis, after a while, you just start doing things that you can't completely explain.

The only concept/theory I know of that comes close to explain the power of books like 'Think and Grow Rich' and 'Why People Fail' is about the brains RAS.

RAS stands for reticular activation system. (Covered in Reynolds' why people fail)

The simplest explanation of RAS I've ever read is 'Until you care about something, you don't notice it.'

For example; you go to a friend's house and they have a brand new car. You've not seen it anywhere else and it's from a manufacturer you've never heard of. Soon afterwards, you will start to see these cars everywhere. And it's because these cars now have value in your mind.

Another example is this: (Taken from Why People Fail)

"Take 15 seconds to look around the room at everything that is black in colour. Do that now before reading the next step.

Now without looking around the room again, see how many objects you can remember that are blue, white, brown."

Hard, isn't it? It's because I told you to look for black, so black has value. Blue, white and brown do not, however. The weirdest thing is that you still looked at all the blue, white and brown objects in the room, but they didn't have value and so you didn't process them.

"RAS works like this: because there are billions of pieces of information in the world, your brain has to choose which of them are useful and which aren't. For instance, if you're a keen tennis player your RAS will pick out articles in the newspaper about tennis, notice advertisements for tennis matches, or spot tennis shows on TV, even out of the corner of your eye. Because you've programmed your brain's RAS that tennis is important to you, it dutifully goes to work to bring you tennis related data. But imagine if you had no clear purpose for your life, your job, or your week. How could the RAS help you spot opportunities and see stuff of relevance for you? It couldn't."

Essentially, going through life without ever deciding, or even thinking about what you want, or how you might get it, is like navigating your way through the woods without a map. Exploring, getting lost, taking turns only to find they don't go anywhere is fun, but not for long. Eventually you're going to want to get out of the woods, and you're going to wish you had a map.

And at the end of the day, until you know how you personally define success, how can you ever truly be successful?

Is success lots of money? Or being happy in your career? Is it being the best at your job? Or being a great parent? These are the choices you have to make. Or have made for you.

The books philosophy is echoed in the sermon `How Bad Do You Want It?' by Eric Thomas.

If you care, really care, more than you care about 'being cool, or being popular or going to a party' about being successful, you will be.

It's not magic. It is your RAS organizing your thoughts, words and actions.

There is a quote:

"Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words.
Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions.
Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits.
Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character.
Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny."

If you are a negative, pessimistic or self - limiting person, your RAS will work just as well. If you genuinely think you're a loser or that you're a failure, your RAS will bring you plenty of evidence to prove it.

`Think and Grow Rich' is of course, not a magic bullet. I think deep down we all know there's no such thing. In my eyes, there's no better way to succeed than just to get on with it.

But, you also have to believe in yourself. Not self-help, love yourself, you are beautiful type stuff (although that has value too.)

You have to truly believe that you are capable of doing the things you want to do and being the person you want to be.

Then work both hard and smart.

Can following the principles of books like `Think and Grow Rich' and `The Secret' re-arrange the universe to deliver to you that which you desire if you make no effort to attain it? I think not.

But can repeating your goals and how you're going to achieve them aloud every day prime and motivate you to achieve them? I can believe that.

Whilst this review may seem a tad over zealous in regards to attributing my achievements solely to 'Think and Grow Rich'... perhaps ignoring the hard work I've put in. I truly believe that the book has helped me to develop, and maintain; the grit necessary to get me where I want to be.

Everyone wants to believe in something and have that belief confirmed.

So...I affirm my goals every morning and like to believe that doing so helps me, even if only in some small way... to achieve them.

Is it just the book? No way. Do I think it helps? Definitely.

It really is a fantastic, inspiring book. Whether you walk away thinking it's principles work, or not.
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73 of 77 people found the following review helpful
on 16 July 2009
I first became aware of this book whilst listening to the audio-book of 'Millionaire Upgrade' by Richard Parkes Cordock. I was reluctant to purchase it however because of the poor reviews of the paperback version, which claimed that the text was of poor quality, amongst other things.

The first thing I will state is that this book is of the finest quality, you need not worry about its tangible condition, or indeed the quality of the information itself. The book contains an introduction by Tom Butler-Bowden (whose book 50 Self-Help Classics I intend to buy), which was very helpful, and it also contains the original text of 'Think And Grow Rich', which went out of copyright. It is pointed out that Napoleon Hill produced a revised, copyrighted edition, in 1960, however 'it is an abridgement which cuts out some of the interesting details in the original...'

As for the book itself and its content, I believe it to be the most important book I have ever read. I've read a few self-help books but none have touched me in the way that this has. As a Graduate, currently working in a minimum wage job, I feel like my life has lost its direction a bit and that I've been wandering aimlessly, but after reading the principles, in 'Think And Grow Rich', I believe that I can go now get my life back on track and I can make some positive plans for the future.

This won't happen overnight nor after reading the book only once, it will require daily application and persistence, and I suspect that my copy of 'Think And Grow Rich' will some become dog-eared from repetitive use! It's going to become my new handbook to living.

Having read other self-help books, I was already familiar with some of the principles, such as 'persistence' however there was quite alot of new material in 'Think And Grow Rich' which I was previously unfamiliar with. The Chapter on 'The Mystery of Sex Transmutation' was particularly interesting, as were the Chapters on 'Auto-Suggestion' and 'How to Outwit the Six Ghosts of Fear.'

The Author is clearly qualified having spent over 20 years of his life researching successful people and his work is endorsed by many distinguished figures such as Theodore Roosevelt, Thomas Edison and many many others.

One thing I found particularly interesting about the book, is that it was written at a time or not longer after, the Great Depression caused by the Wall Street Crash of 1929. Considering the recession we currently face, the book provides alot of hope: 'The "depression" was a blessing in disguise. It reduced the whole world to a new starting point that gives every one a new opportunity.'

It is cited as the Greatest Motivational Book of all time, on the back cover, and I would have to agree that it is certainly the most motivational I have ever read. The author's enthusiasm leaps out of the pages and you can't help but be inspired. The book requires alot of self-analysis and asks many probing questions, which really makes you think. I've read the book from cover to cover to get a feel for it but it's one I will be returning to again and again and studying in-depth.

I shall conclude my review as the Ralston Society conclude the book: 'No matter whether you are rich or poor-you have one asset as great as the richest man living-and that is time. But with each setting sun you become one day older; and have one day less in which to attain the success and wealth you desire....' Why wait any longer? The investment of money in this book is well worth it, but remember that you also have to invest much time and committment, in applying the principles to your life as well.
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116 of 126 people found the following review helpful
on 21 May 2008
Great book - but please do NOT get this version!

All it is, is a printed pdf file with a cover on it.

There are no lines between paragraphs, its printed on 7.5" wide paper and the text runs from edge to edge with hardly any margin at all.

I sent mine back as soon as I received it. It is unreadable.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on 12 June 1999
In 1990, I returned home (Orlando,Fl) after a crashing business failure in Hawaii. I had read Think & Grow Rich many years before along with other mind books including "You can if you Think you can" by Norman Vincent Peale. Frustrated, I decided to go back to my "roots" and dug out the old dog eared copy of "Think and Grow Rich" that I had packed away and began to read and most importantly apply the techniques. Within weeks, I found a new opportunity and within months, my income had grown to a personal high. I really can't say enough about Think and Grow Rich, except read it and apply the principles. The other book that came into my life at the same time I began to reread Think and Grow Rich was "More Wealth without Risk" by Charles Givens and oh yes, I also reread You can if you Think you can by Dr. Peale. I highly endorse all three books for anyone serious about success.
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48 of 53 people found the following review helpful
...the teacher will appear. Napoleon Hill encourages readers to go through this book at least three times. Solid advice, for there is a lot to chew on here.
First, you must know what it is that you want. As the publisher notes, "The riches within your grasp cannot always be measured in money." Get a clear picture of your definition of riches. Second, you must keep an eye open for opportunity, and be prepared to apply this material to transform thought into rewards.
20 years of research are crammed into these pages. You will learn six steps to stimulate your subconscious mind to turn desire into gold, a five step self-confidence formula, the 31 major causes of failure, how to train yourself to be persistent, how to multiply your brain power through a Master Mind group, the power of sex transmutation, the secret of effective prayer, and how to identify and conquer fear.
Do not aim to understand and apply all of these concepts in one trip through the book. Some of the ideas presented here take a while to absorb. Treat it like a buffet, sampling some of the familiar and comfortable in the first wave, while trying some of the new ideas as well. Look to understand and apply more with each read. As you progress, you will see evidence of the truth behind each chapter.
Henry Ford said, "Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is the probable reason so few engage in it." This is not always an easy read. The concepts aren't trendy and easy to apply, so some are likely to dismiss them. But if you take the time to study this book, apply the principles and really start *thinking* right, you will grow rich(...)
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on 19 June 2008
I wish I had read the previous review. It's so unreadable I have just left my copy in the holiday cottage bookcase in case someone has the ability to read the unreadable. I am sure there is a better edition out there.
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43 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on 14 August 1998
Review by Robert T. Koveleskie, Pennsylvania, Founder of  
Don't let the title Think and Grow Rich fool you. It's not only about money--far from it!  It's more importantly about getting along in life with a balanced perspective of economics and people. If you buy no other book in this collection, buy one copy of Think and Grow Rich, and then read it often. After reading it I know it will absolutely change your life--it did mine--and you will begin to "think and grow rich" in many ways!   Growing up on a Pennsylvania farm I had a limited exposure to the world and so badly needed a vision. I don't recall how I got Think and Grow Rich into my hands, but I thank Napoleon Hill that I did. After reading this book my life began to change dramatically. I became impassioned with a desire to succeed. I started working on a long-term education program. After working my way through college, eventually even teaching at universities where I studied, I became interested in having my own business and was successful enough to send my children to private schools.  And yes, I also became rich, just as Napoleon Hill promised in this book--rich in many ways, not only in terms of economics. I often wonder if Napoleon Hill even really knew the magic and power of this  book.
After reading Think and Grow Rich I bought 20 more copies and gave them to friends.  Last month, I mailed a copy to my youngest son for his birthday.   Think and Grow Rich is probably one of the greatest gifts he will ever receive. If you have children, you would be  wise to buy each a copy, no matter what age, and hope someday they will read it. If you are a businessperson, the book will make a great gift for your customers
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on 3 January 2009
Let me begin by saying that this is a truly inspiring and insightful book, and one which will help anyone immeasurably. It is mainly focused on acquiring wealth (hence the title), but the principles can be applied to achieving any goal. Despite being written over 70 years ago, the content is just as relevant and useful today, and easily deserves the full five stars.

With that said, this is a very poor version of the book. The content appears to be complete and original, but it is riddled with spelling mistakes and typographical errors, and I've even found a couple of places where entire paragraphs have somehow found themselves transplanted into the middle of other paragraphs, sometimes in the middle of a word! This is frequently distracting and sometimes nigh-on impossible to read. It is clear that the book has been rushed out with no proof-reading whatsoever.

In summary, I can't recommend this book enough, but please buy a different version.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 30 October 2007
There is nothing "special" about this book. It is simply a reprint of the 1937 edition, complete with all its typographical errors and outdated terminology. It lacks the index and footnotes and other "added value" material of later, better editions. Napoleon Hill himself issued a "revised copyright" edition of his book in 1960 that corrected many mistakes found in the 1937 version, which this "special 70th anniversary" edition simply replicates. Hill would turn over in his grave.
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