Most helpful positive review
112 of 118 people found the following review helpful
Let your mind out of it's cage
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 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.