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Concentration Finds the Way

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Everyone has two natures. One wants us to advance, and the other wants to pull us back. The one we cultivate and concentrate on decides what we are in the end. Both natures are trying to gain control. The will alone determines the issue. By one supreme effort of the will, a man may change his whole career and almost accomplish miracles. You may be that man. You can be if you Will to be, for Will can find a way or make one.

I could quickly fill a book of cases where men plodding along matter-of-factly are all at once aroused and as if awakening from slumber, they developed the possibilities within them and from that time on were different persons. You alone can decide when the turning point will come. It is a matter of choice whether we allow our diviner self to control us or whether the brute within us will control us. No man has to do anything he does not want to do. He is, therefore, the director of his life if he wills to be. What we are to do, is the result of our training. We are like putty and can be entirely controlled by our willpower.

Habit is a matter of acquirement. You hear people say: "He comes by this or that naturally, a chip off the old block," meaning that he is only doing what his parents did. This is often the case, but there is no reason for it, for a person can break a habit just when he masters the "I will." A man may have been a "good-for-nothing" all his life up to this very minute, but from then on, he begins to amount to something. Even older men have suddenly changed and accomplished wonders. "I lost my opportunity," says one. That may be true, but by sheer force of will, we can find a way to bring another opportunity. 

There is no truth in the saying that opportunity knocks at our door but once in a lifetime. The fact is, the opportunity never seeks us; we must seek it. What usually turns out to be one man's opportunity is another man's loss. On this day, one man's brain is matched against another's. It is often the quickness of brain action that determines the result. One man thinks, "I will do it," but while he procrastinates, the other goes ahead and does the work. They both have the same opportunity. The one will complain of his lost chance. But it should teach him a lesson, and it will if he seeks the path that leads to success.

Many persons read good books but say they do not get much good out of them. They do not realize that all any book or lesson course can do is awaken them to their possibilities, stimulating them to use their willpower. You may teach a person from now until doom's day, but that person will only know what he learns himself. "You can lead him to the fountain, but you can't make him drink."

One of the most beneficial practices I know of is looking for the good in everyone and everything, for it is good in all things. We encourage a person by seeing his good qualities and help ourselves by looking for them. We gain their good wishes, a most valuable asset sometimes. We get back what we give out. The time comes when almost all of us need encouragement; we need buoying up. So form the habit of encouraging others, and you will find it an excellent tonic for both those encouraged and yourself, for you will get back encouraging and uplifting thoughts.

Life furnishes us the opportunity to improve. But whether we do it or not depends upon how near we live up to what is expected of us. A person should sit down and examine his progress on the first of each month. If he has not come up to "expectations," he should discover the reason and measure up to what is demanded next time by extra exertion. Every time we fall behind in what we plan to do, we lose just so much, for that time is gone forever. 

We may find a reason for doing it, but most excuses are poor substitutes for action. Most things are possible. Ours may be challenging, but the more complex the task, the greater the reward. The hard stuff develops us; anything that requires little effort utilizes very few of our faculties and yields a scanty harvest of achievement. So do not shrink from a challenging task, for accomplishing one of these will often bring us more good than a dozen lesser triumphs.

I know that every man willing to pay the price can be a success. The price is not in money but the effort. The first essential quality for success is the desire to be something. The next thing is to learn how to do it; the next is to carry it into execution. The man that is the best able to accomplish anything is the one with a broad mind; the man that has acquired knowledge that may, it is true, be foreign to this particular case but is, nevertheless, of some value in all cases. So the man that wants to be successful must be liberal; he must acquire all the knowledge that he can; he must be well posted not only in one branch of his business but in every part of it. Such a man achieves success.

The secret to success is always trying to improve yourself, regardless of your position. Learn all you can. I don't see how little you can do but how much you can do. Such a man will always be in demand, for he establishes the reputation of being a hustler. There is always room for him because progressive firms never let hustlers leave their employment if they can help.

The man that reaches the top is the gritty, brave, hard worker and never the timid, uncertain, slow worker. An untried man is seldom put in a position of responsibility and power. The man selected has done something, achieved results in some line, or taken the lead in his department. He is placed there because of his reputation of putting vigor and virility into his efforts and because he has previously shown that he has pluck and determination.

The man chosen at the crucial time is not usually a genius; he does not possess any more talent than others. However, he has learned that results can only be produced by untiring concentrated effort. That "miracles" in business do not just "happen." He knows they will only happen by sticking to a proposition and seeing it through. That is the only secret of why some succeed, and others fail. The successful man gets used to accomplishing things and always feels sure of success. The man who is a failure gets accustomed to seeing it, expects it, and attracts it to him.

I believe that with the proper training, every man could be a success. It is a shame that many men and women rich in ability and talent are allowed to go to waste. I hope someday to see a millionaire philanthropist start a school to train failures. I am sure he could not put his money to better use. In a year, the science of practical psychology could do wonders for him. He could have agencies on the lookout for men that had lost their grip on themselves; that had, through indisposition, weakened their will; that, through some sorrow or misfortune, had become discouraged. 

At first, they need a little help to get them back on their feet, but usually, they get a knock downwards instead. The result is that their latent powers never develop, and they and the world are the losers. I trust that shortly, someone will heed the opportunity to use some of his millions in arousing men who have begun to falter. All they need to be shown is that there is within them an omnipotent source that is ready to aid them, providing they will use it. Their minds only have to be turned from despair to hope to make them regain their hold.

When a man loses his grip today, he must win his redemption by his own will. He will get little encouragement or advice of an inspiring nature. He must usually regain the right road alone. He must stop dissipating his energies and turn his attention to building a promising career. Today we must conquer our weakening tendencies alone. Don't expect anyone to help you. Take one big brace, make firm resolutions, and resolve to conquer your weaknesses and vices. None can do this for you. They can encourage you; that is all.

I can think of nothing but a lack of health that should interfere with one becoming successful. There is no other handicap that you should not be able to overcome. To overcome a handicap, it is necessary to use more determination, grit, and will.

The man with grit will be poor today and wealthy in a few years; willpower is a better asset than money; Will will carry you over chasms of failure if you give it a chance. The men who have risen to the highest positions have usually had to gain victories against enormous odds. Please think of the hardships many of our inventors had gone through before becoming successful. Usually, they have been very much misunderstood by relatives and friends. Very often, they did not have the bare necessities of life, yet, by sheer determination and resolute courage, they managed to exist somehow until they perfected their inventions, which afterward immensely helped improve the condition of others.

Everyone wants to do something, but few will put forward the needed effort to make the necessary sacrifice to secure it. There is only one way to accomplish anything: to go ahead and do it. A man may accomplish almost anything today if he sets his heart on doing it and lets nothing interfere with his progress. Obstacles are quickly overcome by the man that sets out to accomplish his heart's desire. The "bigger" the man, the smaller the block appears. The "smaller" the man, the greater the obstacle appears. 

Always look at the advantage you gain by overcoming obstacles, which will give you the courage for their conquest.
Do not expect that you will always have easy sailing. Parts of your journey are likely to be rough. Don't let the wild places put you out of commission. Keep on with the trip. Just the way you weather the storm shows what material you are made of. Never sit down and complain of the rough places, but think how nice the pleasant stretches were. View with delight the smooth plains that are in front of you.
Do not let a setback stop you. Think of it as a mere incident that must be overcome before reaching your goal.







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