Synopsis of Think and Grow Rich
Think and Grow Rich was published in the midst of the Great Depression, which has sold over 100 million copies worldwide. In this book, the author analysed how the 500 most successful people of his time became the world’s richest men, top politicians, famous writers and inventors.
Who is it for?
- Anyone who wants to be successful in life.
- Anyone who wants to know the secrets of success
What’s in it for you?
In this book, you’ll discover the traits and skills that successful people possess, which you can learn and become successful as well.
Think and Grow Rich Summary Notes
1. You have to be driven by a burning desire to succeed
Many people wish for wealth and success. But wishing cannot help you to achieve your goal. To become rich, you have to recognise a burning desire within yourself.
Thomas Edison didn’t give up his goal of inventing an electric light bulb after more than 10,000 failed experiments. He was driven by a burning desire to invent the light bulb. And he did it.
Writer Fannie Hurst was rejected over 36 times before one of her short stories was published in a newspaper. Her burning desire to become a successful novelist and playwright came true because her burning desire was stronger than the frustration of rejection.
So if you want to be successful, you have to examine yourself. Do you have a burning desire that is strong enough to make your goals and dreams come true?
2. Setting a specific goal and plan is the fundamental of every success
Every success begins with a goal. Before you work hard to pursue your dream, you should define your goal as precisely as possible. You must have a clear understanding of when you want to achieve your goal and what or how you accomplish it.
If you want to become wealthy, you must come up with a detailed plan that outlines every step you need to take. And once you have a plan, take action to implement it.
So first, write down your goal and your detailed plan to achieve it. Then read it aloud at least twice a day: once in the morning and once before you go to bed every night.
3. Have unwavering faith in yourself
If you have no faith in yourself, no wealth can be acquired. Every successful person shares the common trait of having self-confidence and an unwavering faith.
A typical example that demonstrates the power of faith is Mahatma Gandhi. Without money and military, Gadhi managed to lead his country to get rid of British colonial power and become independent. His strong belief made his fellow countrymen to follow him and stand for their country.
So don’t underestimate the power of your faith in yourself, which can make impossible possible.
4. Make auto-suggestions to your subconscious
Not everyone has an unwavering faith in himself. You have to develop it step-by-step through auto-suggestion.
Auto-suggestion is a way to influence yourself by thinking very specific and purposeful thoughts. You aim to convey some positive goals or commands to your subconscious mind so that you will develop stronger belief in yourself. It’s an effective method to persuade yourself that you can achieve your goal and make it become a reality.
Imprint your desires and goals in your subconscious mind through auto-suggestion. It will then empower all your thoughts and actions towards achieving your goal.
5. You need knowledge to achieve your goals in life
Having the right knowledge can help you achieve your goal much easier. But your knowledge should not be limited to what you learn in school. You may not have a high school diploma or university degree, but still have necessary knowledge to succeed.
Henry Ford is a typical example. He didn’t finish high school, but it didn’t stop him from establishing an industrial empire.
Acquiring the right knowledge and experience is far more important. You don’t have to memorise too many facts, which is useless for success.
The most important thing is that you have the willingness or desire to keep learning in life. Lifelong learning is the key to success. Complacency is dangerous. So never stop learning and acquiring practical knowledge or experience.
Another thing is that sometimes you don’t have to know everything. It’s equally important that you know where and how to seek help from people who have the specialised knowledge. It’s far more practical and productive than learning everything by yourself.
6. Use the power of imagination to make your dreams come true
Each success begins with an idea. And an idea comes from your imagination.
There are two forms of imagination: the creative imagination and synthetic imagination.
Creative imagination allows us to come up with completely new ideas. Writers, visual artists, composers all use this ability to create works that never existed before.
The synthetic imagination allows us to rearrange old ideas into new combinations. The invention of the Walkman is a good example of synthetic imagination. The developer of Sony turned the playback device used by journalists into a portable music player.
Sometimes, these two forms of imagination can be used at the same time. Coca-Cola is a good example. Asa Candler didn’t invent the Coca-Cola recipe, but bought it from a pharmacist for just $3,000. But was able to develop the amazing marketing campaigns to turn the product into one of the largest brands in the world.
So your imagination is important for success. That’s why you have to keep stimulating your imagination through training. The more often you use your imagination, the more powerful and active it will become.
7. You have to know your own strengths and weakness to succeed
Self-awareness of your strengths and weaknesses is important for success. Being self-aware of your weaknesses such as lacking ambition, procrastination or lacking resolve allows you to balance them out with your strengths.
You can do a self-analysis to figure out your strengths and weaknesses. You can go through a checklist of questions for the self-evaluation. Questions like:
- Am I able to make a prompt decision?
- Am I friendly and cooperative?
- Did I achieve my goal this year?
You can also ask a close friend to help you so that you can discuss with him or her objectively what your strengths and weaknesses are.
8. Strengthen your positive emotions for success
Your subconscious mind receives and stores everything you experienced, including both positive and negative. Since your subconscious mind has a great influence on your action, you have to be careful about what you “feed” to your subconscious mind. Negative thoughts will mislead you into pessimism.
In order to make your subconscious help you realise your goal, you have to feed your subconscious mind positive things.
So in your everyday life, try to avoid contact with negative people and their discouraging remarks. Instead, you should increase all positive impulses like enthusiasm and love to develop a positive mentality.
9. Successful people are determined
Analysis of over 25,000 stories of people who failed to succeed shows that they all lack determination. In contrast, all the multi-millionaires are decisive and determined.
Henry Ford is a typical example of this. He adhered to his decisions for a long time despite many people asking him to give up his famous Model T, which brought an enormous profit later.
Many people like to offer opinions. But as long as you do not fall into a deaf obstinacy, sometimes it’s better to listen to fewer critical opinions that may sway your determination.
10. Persistence is the key to success
On the path to success, it is unavoidable that you would encounter a lot of obstacles. Many people give up very quickly. Only a few people can stick to the goal and make it come true.
Of course, if there’s a need to correct the plan, you should do so, otherwise it will become obstinacy.
To make yourself persistent in pursuing your dream, here’re 4 simple rules for you:
- Have a concrete goal and burning desire to achieve it
- Come up with a thorough and precise plan for implementation
- Avoid negative influences from others
- Get a trustworthy person or a team to support you
11. You need a group of like-minded people to achieve big goals
Having a big goal means it is more difficult to plan, implement and achieve. So you would need the support of a group of intelligent people.
You need a union of like-minded people who share a common goal with you. People within the group should develop competencies and have a system of check and balance. By combining the skills, talents, specialist knowledge, experience, it would create a synergistic effect. That means you would be able to achieve something you can never achieve on your own.
Key Takeaways of Think and Grow Rich
Wealth is not a result of luck and coincidence. It’s always the result of some traits and skills that you can learn and practise.