We’re now entering a very interesting part of this book, the question of what holds people back from being successful. Being our own worst enemies much of the time, this is a list you don’t want to miss.
The Thirty Major Causes of Failure
How Many Of These are Holding You Back?
Life’s greatest tragedy consists of men and women who earnestly try, and fail! The tragedy lies in the overwhelmingly large majority of people who fail, as compared to the few who succeed.
The author analyzed several thousand men and women, 98% of whom were classed as “failures.” There is something radically wrong with a civilization, and a system of education, which permits 98% of people to go through life as failures. But this book was not written for the purpose of moralizing on the rights and wrongs of the world; that would require a book a hundred times the size of this one.
Napoleon Hill’s analysis proved that there are thirty major reasons for failure, and thirteen major principles through which people accumulate fortunes. In this chapter, a description of the thirty major causes of failure will be given. As you go over the list, check yourself by it, point by point, so that you discover how many of these causes-of-failure stand between you and success.
First Five Causes of Failure
1. Unfavorable genetics. There is little, if anything, that can be done for people who are born with a deficiency in brain power. This philosophy offers only one method for bridging this weakness—the help of the Master Mind group. The good news is that this is the only one of the thirty causes of failure cannot be easily corrected by any individual.
2. Lack of a well-defined purpose in life. There is no hope of success for the person who does not have a central purpose, or definite goal to aim for. Ninety-eight out of every hundred of those analyzed had no such aim. Perhaps this was the
3. Lack of ambition to aim above mediocrity. There is no hope to offer for the person who is so indifferent as not to want to get ahead in life, and who is not willing to pay the price.
4. Insufficient education. This is a handicap which may be overcome with comparative ease. Experience has proven that the best-educated people are often those who are known as “self-made,” or self-educated. It takes more than a college degree to make someone a person of education. Any person who is educated is someone who has learned to get whatever he wants in life without violating the rights of others. Education consists, not so much of knowledge, but of knowledge effectively and persistently applied. Men are paid, not only for what they know, but more particularly for what they do with what they know.
5. Lack of self-discipline. Discipline comes through self-control. This means that a person must control all negative qualities. Before you can control conditions, you must first control yourself. Self-mastery is the hardest job you will ever tackle. If you do not conquer self, you will be conquered by self. You may see at the same time both your best friend and your greatest enemy by stepping in front of a mirror.
To Be Continued…
This starts Napoleon Hill’s list, an interesting list to be sure. Be sure to come back for more of it, as we’ll continue to break the list of common reasons for failure down into these smaller, more digestible and considerable parts until we’ve looked at all the thirty causes, so that you might identify and rectify those that are plaguing you.
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