Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill Book Review and Summary

Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill offers the most dependable steps to riches ever in history for any searching for a definite goal in life.

The book, Think and Grow Rich, started with a striking question, what do you want the most? Is it Money, Fame, Power, Contentment, Peace of Mind and Happiness?

I have seen the majority seeking after the first three (Money, Fame, Power) with few after the last three (Contentment, Peace of Mind, and Happiness).

But I say unto you, seek ye first the last three and the first will be added unto you.

For any searching for a definite goal in life, the book, Think and Grow Rich offers the most dependable steps to riches ever in history.

So, it’s expected you don’t try to finish the book in a week or even month as it the author didn’t write it to entertain.

It is a said belief in the book whenever successful people have problems. They come together in gatherings to provide solution. This gathering is what we call conferences today.

But before we dig further, let see some praises for the book.


Reviews for Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill


The first came from Dr. Miller Reese Hutchison, nationally known Consulting Engineer and long-time associate of Thomas A. Edison. He said

“This is not a novel. It is a textbook on individual achievement that came directly from the experiences of hundreds of America’s most successful men. It should be studied, digested, and meditated upon. No more than one chapter should be read in a single night. The reader should underline the sentences which impress him most. Later, he should go back to these marked lines and read them again. A real student will not merely read this book, he will absorb its contents and make them his own. This book should be adopted by all high schools and no boy or girl should be permitted to graduate without having satisfactorily passed an examination on it. This philosophy will not take the place of the subjects taught in schools, but it will enable one to organize and apply the knowledge acquired, and convert it into useful service and adequate compensation without waste of time.   

That’s a lengthy but interesting review over there.

A former President of the United State, Woodrow Wilson also said,

May I not congratulate you on your persistence. Any man who devotes that much time . . . must of necessity make discoveries of great value to others. I am deeply impressed by your interpretation of the ‘Master Mind’ principles which you have so clearly described.

Another one from the Former President and Former Chief of Justice United States, William H. Taft. He said,

Dear Mr. Hill:— I have now had an opportunity to finish reading your Law of Success textbooks and I wish to express my appreciation of the splendid work you have done in the organization of this philosophy. It would be helpful if every politician in the country would assimilate and apply the 17 principles upon which your lessons are based. It contains some very fine material which every leader in every walk of life should understand. I am happy to have had the privilege of rendering you some slight measure of help in the organization of this splendid course of “common sense” philosophy. Sincerely yours

And many more…


About the Author and How it Began


Napoleon Hill was not born with a silver spoon. We knew his stories in his early years of life.

As one who was born into poverty and lost his mother at the age of 10 in 1893, you can tell Hill has a difficult childhood.

Rather feeling sorry and blaming the world for his misfortune. Napoleon took control and charge over his life.

At the age of 13, history has it that he started writing for a local newspaper where he was able to raise some money to further his study at the law school.

It was at law school he was chosen to interview the wealthy steel leader, Andrew Carnegie.

Andrew Carnegie asked the then law student, Hill, if he would be willing and prepared to spend the next twenty years sharing the secrets of wealth to men and women in need of it.

Of course, he replied “Yes” which led to Carnegie helping Hills interview 500 millionaires with the aim of discovering the secrets to their wealth.

And thus, the book, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill became the outcome of those interviews.

Some of the Wealthy People Interviewed

It was said that all known men who used the Carnegie secret achieved success at the highest calling of their life. Some of whom are listed below…

And Many More…


Chapter One: Introduction


The man who “Thought” his way into partnership with Thomas Edison

Chapter 1 explains the powerful effect of thoughts in our daily life. He explained how thoughts when mixed with purpose and a burning desire translate into financial success.

Napoleon Hill told a story of a man, Edwin C. Barnes, who desire to work with (not for) Thomas Edison.

Barnes had two major challenge in fulfilling his desire. First, he did not know Edison and second he had no transport fare to get to New Jersey where Edison was.

Barnes has nothing to himself nor to start with – no money, little education and no influence whatsoever.

But he had something money cannot buy – he knew what he wanted, and had the determination to stand by his desire.

How many times have we given up in our dreams before we even start? It shows we don’t want it enough.

When we desire a thing that it turns a dream, we don’t have to quit when we face challenges. We only need to keep pushing.

For a time will come when this dream becomes a reality, we will be the first to know.

What does not kill a man makes him stronger. One of the main weakness of mankind is the average man’s familiarity with the word “Impossible”.

Did Barnes finally fulfill his desire working with Thomas Edison? Yes. How did he do it?

Read the Book, Think and Grow Rich.

Also, Napoleon told story of a man who lost fortunes because he stopped mining while he was three feet away from the gold.

But because of his desire for wealth backed with definite actions, he became what he wanted – rich.

How did he rose back on his feet to making fortune?

Read the Book, Think and Grow Rich.

You are the master of your fate, the captain of your soul because we have the power to control our thoughts.


Chapter 2: Desire


The Starting Point of All Achievements: The First Step toward Riches.

Hopes and wishes won’t take you far except desire. Desires are definite, practical and thoughts dominating.

Desiring riches with a state of mind that becomes an obsession with persistence which does not recognize failure will bring riches.

Mr Barnes story was nothing than the desire to see himself work with the great inventor, Thomas Edison.

This chapter of the Think and Grow Rich contain of a story about an army commander whose enemies outnumbered his soldiers.

Rather than retreating, he loaded the boat with his soldiers and sailed to the enemy’s country. On arrival, he ordered they burn the boats.

He said, “You see the boats going up in smoke. That means we cannot go leave this place alive unless we win. We have no choice – we win or we perish.”

They won.

What ship in your life is holding you back? Are you ready to burn them? Because it’s hard to keep up the burning desire to win if you have other ships as options.

Men who screamed, “If I Perish, I Perish” are not standing on the pedestal of wishes but hunger and desire to see a change.

We who desire riches should not forget that men who have made success we aspire backed up their desires with definite actions.

Remember, people are counting on you to your dreams into actions and make the world a better place. Please don’t fail us.

Much more important in this chapter was the six practical steps by which desires for riches can be turned into financial success as explained by Napoleon Hill.

Get the book, Think and Grow Rich to Learn More.

Understand there is a difference between wishing for a thing and being ready to receive it. No one is ready for a thing, until he believes he can acquire it.


Chapter 3: Faith


But these three are the greatest of all positive emotions: Faith, Love and Sex.

Faith when mixed with thoughts turns into spiritual forces to achieve its course as seen in prayers.

And the beautiful thing about faith is it can be created and inspired by repetitive listening or self-talking of positive emotions.

Let me explain what I mean…

Remember the famous quotes by Albert Einstein,

We are not what we do; we are what we do repeatedly.

Take for example, a prostitute.

When she had her first sex, she resisted to some level. Then, continue for some time and became used to it. She then remained in the act for a long time with different men and now become influenced by it.

For all thoughts you welcome and backed up with faith (believe in) becomes to turn themselves into physical form.

The chapter tells a story of a bank official, Joseph Grant, who borrowed money without the approval of the manager and lost it all in gambling.

On a fateful day, the manager arrived and started with account balancing.

While he was still checking, Grant left the bank, and rent a room in a local hotel.

Three days later he was found dead. Medical reports show he died of mental suicide.

Some days after, it was discovered he has been repeating over and over these words, “My God, this will kill me. I can stand the disgrace.”

Whatever thoughts (good or bad) you ponder about all times end up a reality that all may see in your life.

RICHES begin with FAITH and FAITH with THOUGTHS.

At this chapter, Napoleon Hill gave five powerful self-confidence formula that can help reshape your mind for a greater good.

Get Think and Grow Rich to Learn More


Chapter 4: Auto-Suggestion


The author, Napoleon Hill, defined auto-suggestion this way;

“AUTO-SUGGESTION or SELF-SUGGESSTION is a term which applies to all suggestions and all self-administered stimuli which reach one’s mind through the five senses.”

Nothing is permitted to enter into the subconscious mind the help of auto-suggestion.

Man was designed to have control over not only things of the earth but also of the mind. But how many times do you and I exercise this control especially in the things of the mind?

Words alone do not enter into the subconscious mind unless it comes with some emotions and faith.

So you must find a way to construct your subconscious mind with positive thoughts in such a way it has been emotionalized with faith.

A definite focus on positive talks, affirmations, and inspirational readings will do much better.

Sometimes, it may seem difficult at first especially when you are first starting. Yet don’t stop.

In closed eyes, visualize the money you intend to earn, then see yourself offering a service or products in exchange for the money.

It is my duty and privilege to let you know there is nothing impossible to the person who backs desire with enduring faith.

Napoleon Hill goes further to explain how to visualize and make come to past the financial success you desire.

Get Think and Grow Rich By Napoleon Hill


Chapter 5: Specialized Knowledge


The author started with explanation of the two types of knowledge. The first, General knowledge and the second, specialized.

He continued,

“General knowledge, no matter how great in quantity or variety it may be, is of but little use in the accumulation of money. The faculties of the great universities possess, in the aggregate, practically every form of general knowledge known to civilization. Most of the professors have but little or no money. They specialize on teaching knowledge, but they do not specialize on the organization, or the use of knowledge.”

While writing this, I received a friend’s call. And discussion of knowledge came up. We agreed that knowledge is over glorified and praised.

Men don’t move forward by what they know (knowledge) but by what they do (wisdom) with what they know.

In school, we were told knowledge is power. They even wrote it on the school fence and have it as posters on classroom walls.

But you and I know that’s not true.

Knowledge is only a potential power. Its application is what makes it kinetic.

There is nothing wrong with general knowledge, only that it is not enough.

It is not enough to go wide (general) also go deep (specialized).

You were told, “A Jack of All and Master of None” is bad. That’s true but not complete.

Choose to be, “A Jack of All and Master of One”.

For example, I do everything digital marketing but my specialty is web design.

Here is my final advice on this topic of knowledge.

Know something about everything because it will earn you peace and friends.

Know everything about something because it will earn you money and respect.

Get Think and Grow Rich to Learn More


Chapter Six: Imagination


The Workshop of the Mind

I have always known that man can create anything through his imagination.

You first imagined then you create.

We are in a fast changing world where what was latest three months ago is now obsolete. So, there is a need for men who can imagined the future and bring into today in reality.

Christianity is the greatest potential power in the world today, because its founder was an intense dreamer who had the vision to see realities in their mental and spiritual form before they had been transmitted into physical form.

As far as you can imagine, so shall be given unto you. Your only limitation is your imagination.

Napoleon went further to explain the two types of imagination as written below.:

SYNTHETIC IMAGINATION:—Through this faculty, one may arrange old concepts, ideas, or plans into new combinations. This faculty creates nothing. It merely works with the material of experience, education, and observation with which it is fed. It is the faculty used most by the inventor, with the exception of the who draws upon the creative imagination, when he cannot solve his problem through synthetic imagination.

CREATIVE IMAGINATION:—Through the faculty of creative imagination, the finite mind of man has direct communication with Infinite Intelligence. It is the faculty through which “hunches” and “inspirations” are received. It is by this faculty that all basic, or new ideas are handed over to man. It is through this faculty that thought vibrations from the minds of others are received. It is through this faculty that one individual may “tune in,” or communicate with the subconscious minds of other men.

Napoleon Hill further suggest that you read the entire book through, then come back to this chapter to begin to put your imagination into practice.

Also he told of a story of the enchanted kettle which today we call the Aladdin’s kettle. It is an interesting story you should read in the book.

Get Think and Grow Rich Today


Chapter 7: Organized Planning


The Crystallization of Idea into Action.

Smart planning is essential for success in any given project.

One of the major thing I learned in my first corporate job was the importance of planning.

My then boss will always request to see my digital marketing plans in weeks and months.

Definite plans are worthwhile as they help focus and organized your thoughts in actions.

No man living can succeed without definite concrete plan. You need to know this so when your plans fail you understand it is a temporary defeat not a permanent failure.

Napoleon Hill gave the following advice on how to build practical plans.

He advised:

(a) Ally yourself with a group of as many people as you may need for the creation, and carrying out of your plan, or plans for the accumulation of money.

(b) Decide what advantages, and benefits, you may offer the individual members of your group, in return for their cooperation.

(c) Arrange to meet with the members of your “Master Mind” group at least twice a week, and more often if possible, until you have jointly perfected the necessary plan you have.

In other words, be accountable to someone.

The great inventor, Thomas Edison failed ten thousand times before he could perfect the incandescent electric light bulb.

Whenever you meet with temporary defeat, understand there is nothing wrong with you but your plans.

You cannot be greater than your plans to succeed. Neither can you be superior than that which you have written out from your own mind into a book.

Henry Ford became wealthy not because he is the most educated but because he created and followed a plan that proves to be excellent.

Towards the end of this chapter, Napoleon Hill explain ways you can market your ideas or personal services.

Get Think and Grow Rich to Learn More.


Chapter 8: Decision


The Mastery of Procrastination

Procrastination is a common enemy to man which he must conquer as fast as possible. It is the opposite of decision.

We all have the capability to make a definite and accurate decision in any situations. But how many of times do we exercise this ability.

Henry Ford has this ability of reaching decisions quickly and changing them slowly. What does that tell you?

Even after making decision, you still need to be flexible about it.

We are in a world where people no longer make decisions for themselves instead depends on mentor, parent to do that for them.

A world where people wait on others before making the right decision. This is common with youths.

Yes, I know you need guidance. But even after the guidance and mentorship, you must make your decision.

You have to understand that the cheapest thing on earth is opinion. People give it freely because they don’t have to buy it.

Whenever you allow other people’s opinion of you to stop you from making decision, you have no desire of you own.

You must stand up to what you want, make your decision and go out in full to get it done.

People have been talking before you were born, talking while you are alive and will continue after you are gone.

KEEP A CLOSED MOUTH AND OPEN EARS AND EYES.

Get Think and Grow Rich to Learn More


Chapter 9: Persistence


The Sustained Effort Needed to Induce Faith.

You can’t be normal and expect to make a fortune. No!

Men who acquired great wealth are those who were fierce and were sometimes regarded ruthless.

Most persons are ready to give up their plans and denounce their faith in business at the first opposition the encounter.

Carbon is to steel what persistence is to man.

Napoleon went further to explain other qualities of which persistence works better with. Also he mentioned four practical ways to develop persisitence.

The building of fortune is not for the weak at heart. You have to be tough to get what you want out of life.

Remember this, in your act of persistence, others will call you proud and foolish. Never Mind. Keep Pushing.

“Fortune does not give you what you deserve but what you demand.” – Oluboba Ayodeji.

Get Think and Grow Rich.


Chapter 10: Power of the Master Mind


The Driving Force

Power is needed in the building of wealth. It is an essential factor to get to where you want to be from where you are.

Power in this sense refers to organized effort and sufficient energy you need to turn your desire to favourable results.

You need power (energy) to make money and you need it to keep the money.

In this chapter, you will learn the three major sources of knowledge and how you can gain power through the mastermind.

“Men take on the nature and the habits and the POWER OF THOUGHT of those with whom they associate in a spirit of sympathy and harmony.”

That is, the people you work with influences your power level.

Like other successful men, you can eliminate illiteracy, backwardness, poverty connecting with great minds.

Napoleon Hill tell the story of how Gandhi became the most powerful man ever lived.

He ended the chapter with this:

ANYBODY can WISH for riches, and most people do, but only a few know that a definite plan, plus a BURNING DESIRE for wealth, are the only dependable means of accumulating wealth.

Get Think and Grow Rich


Chapter 11: The Mystery of Sex Transmutation


Sex desires is the most powerful of human desires.

Transmutation means the process of changing or transferring element or energy from one form to another.

The desire for sex is so strong on men that they would do anything, even if it means life and death, to fulfill it.

Napoleon Hill mentioned of the significant facts as far back as two thousand years ago scientific research has disclosed.

  1. The men of greatest achievement are men with highly developed sex natures; men who have learned the art of sex transmutation.
  2. The men who have accumulated great fortunes and achieved outstanding recognition in literature, art, industry, architecture, and the professions, were motivated by the influence of a woman.

Napoleon also mentioned five ways you can communicate sex energy to another. Check it up in the book, Think and Grow Rich.

The major theme of this chapter is how man can turn the desire for sex into something more worthwhile.

Get Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill


Chapter 12: The Subconscious Mind


The Connecting Link

The subconscious is a section of the mind which records and plays back all impulses and thoughts from the five senses of humans. It works day and night.

Something strange about the subconscious mind is; you cannot entirely control it but you manage it for your greater good. It is more automatic than t is manual

How do you do that?

You can hand it plans, instructions and purposes to turn into something concrete. This is great in the accumulation of wealth.

What makes the subconscious mind the connecting link?

It connects your what you know now with those you don’t know yet.

If you fail to plant in your mind the desire for wealth, you plant in it the desire for poverty.

Napoleon Hill went further to explain the seven major positive emotions you accept into your mind. And seven negative emotions you must avoid from your subconscious mind.

Get Think and Grow Rich


Chapter 13: The Brain


A broadcasting and Receiving Station for Thoughts

When the subconscious mind send vibrations of thoughts, the brain receive them and pick out the necessary.

Man with all his knowledge knows little to nothing about the brain and its power.

It was discovered that there are over 10 trillion nerve cells in the human cerebral cortex arranged in definite patterns.

Napoleon continued…

You have but three principles to bear in mind, and to apply, when you wish to use your broadcasting station—the SUBCONSCIOUS MIND, CREATIVE IMAGINATION, and AUTOSUGGESTION. The stimuli through which you put these three principles into action have been described—the procedure begins with DESIRE.

Get Think and Grow Rich


Chapter 14: The Sixth Sense


The Door to the Temple of Wisdom

Men have become what they are because of the constant dominating thoughts and desires.

The sixth sense is the portion of the subconscious mind refer to as the creative imagination. It is the mixture of both the mental and the spiritual.

The understanding of the sixth sense comes only through the mind by meditations.

When a man gets to his sixth sense, he is already in contacts with his universal mind.

The author, Napoleon Hill, explained how he followed the habits of reshaping his own character.

How he imitated the lives and works of nine men that are most important to him. He called them the, The Invisible Counselors.

These nine men were, Emerson, Paine, Edison, Darwin, Lincoln, Burbank, Napoleon, Ford, and Carnegie

Get Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill


Chapter 15: How to Outwit the Six Ghost of Fear


First thig you must know is that indecision gives birth to fear. The two works together and cannot be separated.

Napoleon Hill wrote at length the six basic fears in every man’s life. They are;

  • The fear of POVERTY
  • The fear of CRITICISM}
  • The fear of ILL HEALTH
  • The fear of LOSS OF LOVE OF SOMEONE
  • The fear of OLD AGE
  • The fear of DEATH

All other fears are subcategory of this six basic fears.

Below are what fears does to you.

  • It discourages you from pursuing a cause and ends you with lack of ambition.
  • It makes you timid when you need be courageous.
  • It keeps you procrastinating when you should be working.
  • It makes you indifference and you end up losing enthusiasm about a thing,

Remember, what we fear we lose.

Get Think and Grow Rich.


Conclusion on Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill


Let me say this again…

Knowledge will not attract money unless it is organized and intelligently directed, through practical place of action, to the definite end of accumulation of money.

The real meaning of the word, “educate”. The word is derived from the word, “educo” meaning to educe, to draw out, and to develop from within.

An educated man is a man who has developed the faculty of his mind that he may acquire anything he wants or its equivalent without violating the right of others.

Any man is educated who knows where to gets knowledge when he needs it and how to organize that knowledge into definite plans of action.

Knowledge has no value except that which can be gained from its application toward some worthy end.

And I end with this

It is a proven truth that you earn more in your ability to get others do the work than you could ever earn by your own effort. – Oluboba Ayodeji

The person who stopped studying merely because he has finished school is forever hopelessly doomed to mediocrity, no matter what may be his calling.

Study Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill to show yourself approved.

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