The Power of Concentration, by Theron Q. Dumont
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The Power of Concentration
By THERON Q. DUMONT
Author of "Personal Magnetism"; "Practical Memory
Training"; "Mental Therapeutics"; "Successful
Salesmanship"; "Master Mind"; etc., etc.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION. It is of the utmost value to learn how to
concentrate. To make the greatest success of anything you must be
able to concentrate your entire thought upon the idea you are
working on. The person that is able to concentrate utilizes all
constructive thoughts and shuts out all destructive ones. The
greatest man would accomplish nothing if he lacked concentration.
LESSON 1. CONCENTRATION FINDS THE WAY. Our two natures; one wants
to advance; the other wants to pull us back. The one we
concentrate on and develop determines what we will become. How
you may change your whole career and accomplish miracles. We can
be completely controlled by our concentrated thought. How can you
make an "opportunity". One man's opportunity is usually another
man's loss. A very beneficial practice. Why we get back what we
give out. A wonderful encouraging tonic. Every man that is
willing to put forth the necessary effort can be a success. The
man that is best prepared to do things. How to make your services
always in demand. How to reach the top. The man selected to
manage is not usually a genius. He does not possess any more
talent than others. What he does possess that others do not. Why
a few succeed and so many fail.
LESSON 2. THE SELF-MASTERY. SELF-DIRECTION POWER OF
CONCENTRATION. Very few men possess the power to concentrate as
they should. The cause of poor concentration. A very good
practice. Concentration means strength of mind. The person unable
to concentrate never accomplished a great deal. How many weaken
their powers of concentration. How concentration can only be
developed. How to control your every thought, wish and plan. What
concentration is. The person that is able to concentrate gains
the Power to control others. Concentration makes the will and
intellect act in unison. Why some people are not magnetic. When a
powerful personal influence is generated. How to become
influential. The cause of spasmodic, erratic concentration. How
to centralize your attention. A quick way to develop
concentration. The development of physical and mental
concentration. How to learn a valuable lesson. One of the best
ways to influence another. A good exercise. The real benefit of
physical culture usually lost sight of. How to hold the
facilities at work.
LESSON 3. HOW TO GAIN WHAT YOU WANT THROUGH CONCENTRATION. The
mistake made by those that do not understand the power of mental
attraction. How to get what you want. We are not living in a
"fairy age." Not the age for a "dreamer." The secret of getting
what you concentrate on. How a messenger in a bank became its
president. "Power to him who power exerts."
LESSON 4. CONCENTRATION, THE SILENT FORCE THAT PRODUCES RESULTS
IN ALL BUSINESS. The power of thought. An experiment showing the
power of thought. By concentrated thought you can make yourself
what you please. How to greatly increase your efficiency. The
face reflects how a person has spent his life. How to awaken
possibilities within, you never dreamed of. How to inspire
confidence in those you deal with. The value of concentrating
your thoughts in the proper channels. How to attract the good
things without a, great effort. By concentration you can
revolutionize your life and gain happiness greater than you can
LESSON 5. HOW CONCENTRATED THOUGHT LINKS ALL HUMANITY TOGETHER.
How you may become successful. The barriers to success can be
controlled. How to realize your fondest ambitions. How to
overcome destructive forces. How to become the master of
circumstances. Through concentration you can mold your
environment. You can get what you want. Sowing the thought seeds
of success. Mind forces that are hardly dreamed of at present. A
method for removing unfavorable conditions. Concentration makes
you happy and gives you plenty to do.
LESSON 6. THE TRAINING OF THE WILL TO DO. The great secret of any
accomplishment. Everything Is possible today. The inner energy
that controls all conscious acts. How you can become a genius. A
mighty force at your disposal. Rules that will make you a "man"
among men. The spirit that wins. Concentration develops
determination and perseverance. Some special instructions. What
will power is. You have as strong a will as anyone. You determine
your own fate. The importance of learning to use your will.
LESSON 7. THE CONCENTRATED MENTAL DEMAND. The attitude of the
mind affects the expression of the face. The wonderful power of
the concentrated mental demand. How to desire something and
exclude all distracting thoughts. The silent force of wonderful
power within all of us. How to make plans work out. The mightiest
power in the world is free for you to use. The motive power which
supplies the energies necessary for achievement.
LESSON 8. CONCENTRATION GIVES MENTAL POISE. The man that can
concentrate is well poised. What you must do to be successful
today. Concentration that is dangerous. How to make those you
come in contact with feel as you do. The man that becomes a power
in the world. You can control your life and actions. Successful
lives are the concentrated lives. Why people do not get what they
LESSON 9. CONCENTRATION CAN OVERCOME BAD HABITS. Habit is but a
powerful enemy and wonderful ally of concentration. Most people
are controlled through the power of habit. Most people are
imitators and copiers of their past selves. All physical
impressions are the carrying out of the actions of the will and
intellect. How everyone could be made happier and successful.
Some wonderful maxims. Habit the deepest law of human nature. How
to overcome undesirable habits. Some special instructions by Dr.
LESSON 10. BUSINESS RESULTS GAINED THROUGH CONCENTRATION. A
successful business not the result of chance. Failure not caused
by luck. The intense desire that is necessary to make a business
a success. Those that achieve permanent success deserve it. The
man that is able to skilfully manage his business. How to realize
your ambition. The successful business attitude. Your opinion
should be as good as any one else. How many ruin their judgment.
The man that gets the best results. A successful business not
hard to build up; may be built up In a few years now whereas
formerly it took a lifetime. How to do more and better work. How
to attract the ideas thought out by others. Many attract forces
and Influences that they should not. Broaden the visions of those
you come in contact with.
LESSON 11. CONCENTRATE ON COURAGE. Lack of courage creates
financial, as well as mental and moral difficulties. The man
without courage attracts all that is contemptible, weakening,
demoralizing and destructive. It is just as easy to be courageous
as cowardly. Courage concentrates the mental forces on the task
at hand. Cowardice dissipates both mental and moral forces. How
to banish doubts. No one knows what they can do until they try.
Once you understand the law everything is possible. How to build
up courage to do as you wish. Difficulties soon melt away before
LESSON 12. CONCENTRATE ON WEALTH. No one was intended to be poor.
Through wealth we can uplift ourselves and humanity. Uncongenial
and unpleasant conditions are not conducive to proper thought.
First step toward acquiring wealth. Most men of all ages have
been comparatively rich. Wealth not altogether the result of
being industrious. No one can become wealthy from his earnings.
Why some have to be taught such painful lessons. How many attract
poverty instead of riches. Why it is necessary to give a fair
exchange for what we receive. How to make your society not only
agreeable to others but sought after.
LESSON 13. YOU CAN CONCENTRATE, BUT WILL YOU? All have the
ability to concentrate. More ability not used than is used.
Sometimes only a trifle keeps one from becoming a success. The
fault is all your own. How to discover the cause if you are not
making good. Make conditions favorable and do not expect them to
shape themselves. Stumbling blocks but stepping stones. Hard
Passages can be bridged if you just concentrate on them. Why more
people do not succeed. Don't be afraid of a rebuff. The man that
knows no such thing as failure. Be ready for an opportunity when
it comes, No circumstances can keep the determined man from
LESSON 14. ART OF CONCENTRATING WITH PRACTICAL EXERCISE. A daily
habit will wonderfully increase your concentration. Seeing
yourself as you would like to be. Instruction of the greatest
importance. The great creative spirit of the universe. Why things
manifest as they do. The cosmic intelligence. A most desired
state. How to receive messages from the universal mind. How to
develop power, unknown to you before. Make your mind a powerful
transmitter of thought. The best time to practice concentration
exercises. How to rejuvenate every cell of your brain and body.
An exercise that will give you a self-poised manner. Instead of a
nervous strained appearance. Concentrating on the powers within.
Concentration will save your energy. How to keep from getting
irritable or nervous. The Eastern way of concentrating. Exercise
in controlling desires.
LESSON 15. CONCENTRATE SO YOU WILL NOT FORGET. Why people forget.
An easy way to remember. How to deepen your impression. Exercise
in Memory Concentration.
LESSON 16. HOW CONCENTRATION CAN FULFILL YOUR DESIRE. The desire
to do implies the ability to do. Man has within him the power to
gratify his every wish. If you have been unable to satisfy your
longings, it is time you learn how to use your God-given powers.
Priceless knowledge and unlimited possibilities within you that
Is foreign to most people. How to concentrate on what you want
and get it. The miraculous help we apparently receive at times.
How one man started a business on thirteen cents and in six years
built up a business that pays him $6,000 a year. When you put
forth the necessary concentrated effort you will receive great
help from unknown sources.
LESSON 17. IDEALS DEVELOP BY CONCENTRATION. Your happiness and
success depends upon your ideals. A valuable lesson. Through
concentration we can work out our ideals In physical life. What a
different world this would be if we would build the right kind of
ideals. Every time you change your ideal you think differently.
Life is one continuous unfoldment. You can be happy every step of
its way or miserable as you please. How our grandest thoughts
come to us.
LESSON 18. MENTAL CONTROL THROUGH CREATION. An inventor's vision.
Why It is easy to project your thoughts to another. How your
mental powers can draw to you forces of a helpful nature. The big
business man must possess mental power of control. How to make a
friend or relative succeed. How to generate enthusiasm and the
spirit of success. Your environment is either helpful or harmful.
Mental starvation. How to instil your thoughts and ideas into
others. Influence that must be shaken off before you can advance.
Our attitude has more to do with success than you realize.
LESSON 19. A CONCENTRATED WILL DEVELOPMENT. A most effective and
practical method of developing the Will. Practical exercises.
Will training without exercises. Will-power can overcome big
obstacles. The Will to win. Man an unknown quality until his
powers are developed. Ability plentiful, but organizing,
initiative and creative power not so plentiful. The driving force
LESSON 20. CONCENTRATION REVIEWED. Those unable to concentrate
will generally suffer from poverty and unhappiness, The best
instructor will only help you to the extent you put it into
practice. Gaining the mastery of your work, life powers and
forces. Concentrate the dominant quality that makes men
successful. Everyone can learn to concentrate better. An
experiment to try. Final instructions.
We all know that in order to accomplish a certain thing we must
concentrate. It is of the utmost value to learn how to
concentrate. To make a success of anything you must be able to
concentrate your entire thought upon the idea you are working
Do not become discouraged, if you are unable to hold your thought
on the subject very long at first. There are very few that can.
It seems a peculiar fact that it is easier to concentrate on
something that is not good for us, than on something that is
beneficial. This tendency is overcome when we learn to
If you will just practice a few concentration exercises each day
you will find you will soon develop this wonderful power.
Success is assured when you are able to concentrate for you are
then able to utilize for your good all constructive thoughts and
shut out all the destructive ones. It is of the greatest value to
be able to think only that which will be beneficial.
Did you ever stop to think what an important part your thoughts,
concentrated thoughts, play in your life? This book shows their
far-reaching and all-abiding effects.
These lessons you will find very practical. The exercises I have
thoroughly tested. They are arranged so that you will notice an
improvement from the very start, and this will give you
encouragement. They point out ways in which you can help
Man is a wonderful creature, but he must be trained and developed
to be useful. A great work can be accomplished by every man if he
can be awakened to do his very best. But the greatest man would
not accomplish much if he lacked concentration and effort. Dwarfs
can often do the work of giants when they are transformed by the
almost magic power of great mental concentration. But giants will
only do the work of dwarfs when they lack this power.
We accomplish more by concentration than by fitness; the man that
is apparently best suited for a place does not always fill it
best. It is the man that concentrates on its every possibility
that makes an art of both his work and his life.
All your real advancement must come from your individual effort.
This course of lessons will stimulate and inspire you to achieve
success; it will bring you into perfect harmony with the laws of
success. It will give you a firmer hold on your duties and
The methods of thought concentration given in this work if put
into practice will open up interior avenues that will connect you
with the everlasting laws of Being and their exhaustless
foundation of unchangeable truth.
As most people are very different it is impossible to give
instructions that will be of the same value to all. The author
has endeavored in these lessons to awaken that within the soul
which perhaps the book does not express. So study these lessons
as a means of awakening and training that which is within
yourself. Let all your acts and thoughts have the intensity and
power of concentration.
To really get the full benefit of these lessons you should read a
page, then close the book and thoughtfully recall its ideas. If
you will do this you will soon cultivate a concentrated mental
habit, which will enable you to read with ordinary rapidity and
remember all that you read.
LESSON I. CONCENTRATION FINDS THE WAY
Everyone has two natures. One wants us to advance and the other
wants to pull us back. The one that we cultivate and concentrate
on decides what we are at the end. Both natures are trying to
gain control. The will alone decides the issue. A man by one
supreme effort of the will 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 easily fill a book, of cases where men plodding along in
a matter-of-fact way, were all at once aroused and as if
awakening from a 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 we
will be controlled by the brute within 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 completely controlled
by our will power.
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 quite often
the case, but there is no reason for it, for a person can break a
habit just the moment he masters the "I will." A man may have
been a "good-for-nothing" all his life up to this very minute,
but from this time on he begins to amount to something. Even old
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 us another opportunity. There is
no truth in the saying that opportunity knocks at our door but
once in a lifetime. The fact is, opportunity never seeks us; we
must seek it. What usually turns out to be one man's opportunity,
was another man's loss. In 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 is
seeking 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 any lesson
course can do is to awaken them to their possibilities; to
stimulate them to use their will power. 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 that of looking
for the good in everyone and everything, for there is good in all
things. We encourage a person by seeing his good qualities and we
also 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 most all of us need encouragement; need
buoying up. So form the habit of encouraging others, and you will
find it a wonderful 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. The first of each month, a person should sit down and examine
the progress he has made. If he has not come up to "expectations"
he should discover the reason, and by extra exertion measure up
to what is demanded next time. Every time that we fall behind
what we planned 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 a hard task, but the harder the task, the greater the reward.
It is the difficult things that really develop us, anything that
requires only a small effort, utilizes very few of our faculties,
and yields a scanty harvest of achievement. So do not shrink from
a hard task, for to accomplish one of these will often bring us
more good than a dozen lesser triumphs.
I know that every man that is willing to pay the price can be a
success. The price is not in money, but in effort. The first
essential quality for success is the desire to do--to be
something. The next thing is to learn how to do it; the next 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 of success is to try always to improve yourself no
matter where you are or what your position. Learn all you can.
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 a hustler leave their employment if
they can help it.
The man that reaches the top is the gritty, plucky, 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 is one that 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
The man that is chosen at the crucial time is not usually a
genius; he does not possess any more talent than others, but he
has learned that results can only be produced by untiring
concentrated effort. That "miracles," in business do not just
"happen." He knows that the only way they will happen is 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 seeing things accomplished and always feels sure of
success. The man that is a failure gets used to seeing failure,
expects it and attracts it to him.
It is my opinion that with the right kind of training every man
could be a success. It is really a shame that so many men and
women, rich in ability and talent, are allowed to go to waste, so
to speak. Some day I hope to see a millionaire philanthropist
start a school for the training of failures. I am sure he could
not put his money to a better use. In a year's time 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 all they need is 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 both they and the
world are the losers. I trust that in the near future, someone
will heed the opportunity of using some of his millions in
arousing men that 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 make use of it. Their minds only
have to be turned from despair to hope to make them regain their
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 useful career. Today we must conquer our weakening
tendencies alone. Don't expect anyone to help you. Just take one
big brace, make firm resolutions, and resolve to conquer your
weaknesses and vices. Really none can do this for you. They can
encourage you; that is all.
I can think of nothing, but 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, all that
it is necessary to do is to use more determination and grit and
The man with grit and will, may be poor today and wealthy in a
few years; will power is a better asset than money; Will will
carry you over chasms of failure, if you but give it the chance.
The men that have risen to the highest positions have usually had
to gain their victories against big odds. Think of the hardships
many of our inventors have gone through before they became a
success. 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 afterwards greatly helped in bettering the
condition of others.
Everyone really wants to do something, but there are few that
will put forward the needed effort to make the necessary
sacrifice to secure it. There is only one way to accomplish
anything and that is to go ahead and do it. A man may accomplish
almost anything today, if he just 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 obstacle appears.
The "smaller" the man the greater the obstacle appears. Always
look at the advantage you gain by overcoming obstacles, and it
will give you the needed 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 rough places
put you out of commission. Keep on with the journey. 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 has to be overcome before you can reach your goal.
LESSON II. THE SELF-MASTERY: SELF-DIRECTION POWER OF
Man from a psychological standpoint of development is not what he
should be. He does not possess the self-mastery, the
self-directing power of concentration that is his by right.
He has not trained himself in a way to promote his self-mastery.
Every balanced mind possesses the faculties whose chief duties
are to engineer, direct and concentrate the operations of the
mind, both in a mental and physical sense. Man must learn to
control not only his mind but his bodily movements.
When the controlling faculties (autonomic) are in an untrained
condition, the impulses, passions, emotions, thoughts, actions
and habits of the person suffer from lack of regulation, and the
procedure of mental concentration is not good, not because the
mind is necessarily weak in the autonomic department of the
faculties, but because the mind is not properly trained.
When the self-regulating faculties are not developed the
impulses, appetites, emotions and passions have full swing to do
as they please and the mind becomes impulsive, restless,
emotional and irregular in its action. This is what makes mental
When the self-guiding faculties are weak in development, the
person always lacks the power of mental concentration. Therefore
you cannot learn to concentrate until you develop those very
powers that qualify you to be able to concentrate. So if you
cannot concentrate one of the following is the cause:
1. "Deficiency of the motor centers."
2. "An impulsive and emotional mind."
3. "An untrained mind."
The last fault can soon be removed by systematic practice. It is
easiest to correct.
The impulsive and emotional state of mind can best be corrected
by restraining anger, passion and excitement, hatred, strong
impulses, intense emotions, fretfulness, etc. It is impossible to
concentrate when you are in any of these excited states.
These can be naturally decreased by avoiding such food and drinks
as have nerve weakening or stimulating influences, or a tendency
to stir up the passions, the impulses and the emotions; it is a
very good practice to watch and associate with those persons that
are steady, calm, controlled and conservative.
Correcting the deficiency of the motor centers is harder because
as the person's brain is undeveloped he lacks will power.
To cure this takes some time. Persons so afflicted may benefit by
reading and studying my course, "The Master Mind."[*]
[*] To be published by Advanced Thought Publishing Co., Chicago,
Many have the idea that when they get into a negative state they
are concentrating, but this is not so. They may be meditating,
though not concentrating. Those that are in a negative state a
good deal of the time cannot, as a rule, concentrate very well;
they develop instead abstraction of the mind, or absence of mind.
Their power of concentration becomes weaker and they find it
difficult to concentrate on anything. They very often injure the
brain, if they keep up this state. To be able to concentrate you
must possess strength of mind. The person that is feeble-minded
cannot concentrate his mind, because of lack of will. The mind
that cannot center itself on a special subject, or thought, is
weak; also the mind that cannot draw itself from a subject or
thought is weak. But the person that can center his mind on any
problem, no matter what it is, and remove any unharmonious
impressions has strength of mind. Concentration, first, last and
all the time, means strength of mind.
Through concentration a person is able to collect and hold his
mental and physical energies at work. A concentrated mind pays
attention to thoughts, words, acts and plans. The person who
allows his mind to roam at will will never accomplish a great
deal in the world. He wastes his energies. If you work, think,
talk and act aimlessly, and allow your brain to wander from your
subject to foreign fields, you will not be able to concentrate.
You concentrate at the moment when you say, "I want to, I can, I
Some Mistakes Some People Make. If you waste your time reading
sensational stories or worthless newspaper items, you excite the
impulsive and the emotional faculties, and this means you are
weakening your power of concentration. You will not be a free
engineer, able to pilot yourself to success.
Concentration of the mind can only be developed by watching
yourself closely. All kinds of development commence with close
attention. You should regulate your every thought and feeling.
When you commence to watch yourself and your own acts and also
the acts of other people, you use the faculties of autonomy, and,
as you continue to do so, you improve your faculties, until in
time you can engineer your every thought, wish and plan. To be
able to focalize the mind on the object at hand in a conscious
manner leads to concentration. Only the trained mind can
focalize. To hold a thought before it until all the faculties
shall have had time to consider that thought is concentration.
The person that cannot direct his thoughts, wishes, plans,
resolutions and studies cannot possibly succeed to the fullest
extent. The person that is impulsive one moment and calm the next
has not the proper control over himself. He is not a master of
his mind, nor of his thoughts, feelings and wishes. Such a person
cannot be a success. When he becomes irritated, he irritates
others and spoils all chances of any concerned doing their best.
But the person that can direct his energies and hold them at work
in a concentrated manner controls his every work and act, and
thereby gains power to control others. He can make his every move
serve a useful end and every thought a noble purpose.
In this day the man that gets excited and irritable should be
looked upon as an undesirable person. The person of good breeding
now speaks with slowness and deliberation. He is cultivating more
and more of a reposeful attitude. He is consciously attentive and
holds his mind to one thing at a time. He shuts out everything
else. When you are talking to anyone give him your sole and
undivided attention. Do not let your attention wander or be
diverted. Give no heed to anything else, but make your will and
intellect act in unison.
Start out in the morning and see how self-poised you can remain
all day. At times take an inventory of your actions during the
day and see if you have kept your determination. If not, see that
you do tomorrow. The more self-poised you are the better will
your concentration be. Never be in too much of a hurry; and,
remember, the more you improve your concentration, the greater
are your possibilities. Concentration means success, because you
are better able to govern yourself and centralize your mind; you
become more in earnest in what you do and this almost invariably
improves your chances for success.
When you are talking to a person have your own plans in mind.
Concentrate your strength upon the purpose you are talking about.
Watch his every move, but keep your own plans before you. Unless
you do, you will waste your energy and not accomplish as much as
I want you to watch the next person you see that has the
reputation of being a strong character, a man of force. Watch and
see what a perfect control he has over his body. Then I want you
to watch just an ordinary person. Notice how he moves his eyes,
arms, fingers; notice the useless expenditure of energy. These
movements all break down the vital cells and lessen the person's
power in vital and nerve directions. It is just as important for
you to conserve your nervous forces as it is the vital forces. As
an example we see an engine going along the track very smoothly.
Some one opens all the valves and the train stops. It is the same
with you. If you want to use your full amount of steam, you must
close your valves and direct your power of generating mental
steam toward one end. Center your mind on one purpose, one plan,
There is nothing that uses up nerve force so quickly as
excitement. This is why an irritable person is never magnetic; he
is never admired or loved; he does not develop those finer
qualities that a real gentleman possesses. Anger, sarcasm and
excitement weaken a person in this direction. The person that
allows himself to get excited will become nervous in time,
because he uses up his nerve forces and his vital energies. The
person that cannot control himself and keep from becoming excited
When the mind can properly concentrate, all the energy of every
microscopic cell is directed into one channel and then there is a
powerful personal influence generated. Everyone possesses many
millions of little trembling cells, and each one of these has a
center where life and energy are stored up and generated. If this
energy is not wasted but conserved and controlled, this person is
influential, but when it is the opposite, he is not influential
Just as it is impossible for a steam engine to run with all its
valves open, so is it impossible for you to waste your energy and
run at your top speed. Each neuron in the gray layers of the
brain is a psychic center of thought and action, each one is
pulsating an intelligent force of some kind, and when this force,
your thoughts and motions, are kept in cheek by a conservative,
systematic and concentrated mind, the result will be magnetism,
vitality and health. The muscles, bones, ligaments, feet, hands
and nerves, etc., are agents for carrying out the mandates of the
mind. The sole purpose of the volitional faculties is to move the
physical mechanism as the energy travels along the wires of
nerves and muscles. Just for that reason, if you throw a
voluntary control over these messages, impulses, thoughts,
emotions, physical movements and over these physical instruments
you develop your faculties of self-mastery and to the extent you
succeed here in proportion will you develop the power of
Any exercise or work that excites the mind, stimulates the
senses, calls the emotions and appetites into action, confuses,
terrifies or emotionalizes, weakens the power of concentration.
This is why all kind of excitement is bad. This is the reason why
persons who drink strong drinks, who allow themselves to get into
fits of temper, who fight, who eat stimulating food, who sing and
dance and thus develop their emotions, who are sudden, vehement
and emotional, lack the power to concentrate. But those whose
actions are slower and directed by their intelligence develop
concentration. Sometimes dogmatic, wilful, excitable persons can
concentrate, but it is spasmodic, erratic concentration instead
of controlled and uniform concentration. Their energy works by
spells; sometimes they have plenty, other times very little; it
is easily excited; easily wasted. The best way to understand it
is to compare it with the discharge of a gun. If the gun goes off
when you want it to, it accomplishes the purpose, but if it goes
off before you are ready for it, you will not only waste
ammunition, but it is also likely to do some damage. That is just
what most persons do. They allow their energy to explode, thus
not only wasting it but endangering others. They waste their
power, their magnetism and so injure their chance of success.
Such persons are never well liked and never will be until they
gain control over themselves.
It will be necessary for them to practice many different kinds of
concentration exercises, and to keep them up for some time. They
must completely overcome their sudden, erratic thoughts, and
regulate their emotions and movements. They must from morning to
night train the mind to be steady, and direct and keep the
energies at work.
The lower area of the brain is the store house of the energy.
Most all persons have all the dynamic energy they need if they
would concentrate it. They have the machine, but they must also
have the engineer, or they will not go very far. The engineer is
the self-regulating, directing power. The person that does not
develop his engineering qualities will not accomplish much in
life. The good engineer controls his every act. All work assists
in development. By what you do you either advance or degenerate.
This is a good idea to keep always in mind. When you are
uncertain whether you should do something or not, just think
whether by doing it you will grow or deteriorate, and act
I am a firm believer in "work when you work, and play when you
play." When you give yourself up to pleasure you can develop
concentration by thinking of nothing else but pleasure; when your
mind dwells on love, think of nothing but this and you will find
you can develop a more intense love than you ever had before.
When you concentrate your mind on the "you" or real self, and its
wonderful possibilities, you develop concentration and a higher
opinion of yourself. By doing this systematically, you develop
much power, because you cannot be systematic without
concentrating on what you are doing. When you walk out into the
country and inhale the fresh air, studying vegetation, trees,
etc., you are concentrating. When you see that you are at your
place of business at a certain time each morning you are
developing steadiness of habit and becoming systematic. If you
form the habit of being on time one morning, a little late the
next, and still later the following one, you are not developing
concentration, but whenever you fix your mind on a certain
thought and hold your mind on it at successive intervals, you
If you hold your mind on some chosen object, you centralize your
attention, just like the lens of the camera centralizes on a
certain landscape. Therefore always hold your mind on what you
are doing, no matter what it is. Keep a careful watch over
yourself, for unless you do your improvement will be very slow.
Practice inhaling long, deep breaths, not simply for the
improvement of health, although that is no small matter, but also
for the purpose of developing more power, more love, more life.
All work assists in development.
You may think it foolish to try to develop concentration by
taking muscular exercises, but you must not forget that the mind
is associated with muscle and nerve. When you steady your nerves
and muscles, you steady your mind, but let your nerves get out of
order and your mind will become erratic and you will not possess
the power of direction, which, in other words, is concentration.
Therefore you understand how important exercises that steady the
nerves and muscles are in developing concentration.
Everyone is continually receiving impulses that must be directed
and controlled if one is to lead a successful life. That is the
reason why a person must control the movements of his eyes, feet,
fingers, etc.; this is another reason why it is important to
control his breathing. The slow, deep, prolonged exhalations are
of wonderful value. They steady the circulation, the heart
action, muscles and nerves of the mind. If the heart flutters,
the circulation is not regular, and when the lung action is
uneven, the mind becomes unsteady and not fit for concentration.
This is why controlled breathing is very important as a
foundation for physical health.
You must not only concentrate your mind, but also the action of
the eyes, ears and fingers. Each of these contain miniature minds
that are controlled by the master engineer. You will develop much
quicker if you thoroughly realize this.
If you have ever associated with big men, or read their
biographies, you will find that they usually let the others do
the talking. It is much easier to talk than it is to listen.
There is no better exercise for concentration than to pay close
attention when some one is talking. Besides learning from what
they have to say, you may develop both mental and physical
When you shake hands with some one just think of your hand as
containing hundreds of individual minds, each having an
intelligence of its own. When you put this feeling into your hand
shake it shows personality. When you shake hands in a listless
way, it denotes timidity, lack of force and power of personality.
When the hand grip is very weak and stiff, the person has little
love in his nature, no passion and no magnetism. When the hand
shake is just the opposite, you will find that the nature is
also. The loveless person is non-magnetic and he shows that he is
by his non-magnetic hand shake. When two developed souls shake
hands, their clasps are never light. There is a thrill that goes
through both when the two currents meet. Love arouses the
opposite currents of the positive and negative natures. When
there is no love, life loses its charm. The hand quickly shows
when love is being aroused. This is why you should study the art
of hand shaking and develop your social affections. A person that
loves his kind reflects love, but a person that hates reflects
hate. The person with a bad nature, a hateful disposition, evil
thoughts and feeling is erratic, freakish and fitful. When you
allow yourself to become irritable, watch how you breathe and you
will learn a valuable lesson. Watch how you breathe when you are
happy. Watch your breathing when you harbor hate. Watch how you
breathe when you feel in love with the whole world and noble
emotions thrill you. When filled with good thoughts, you breathe
a plentiful supply of oxygen into your lungs and love fills your
soul. Love develops a person, physically, mentally and socially.
Breathe deeply when you are happy and you will gain life and
strength; you will steady your mind and you will develop your
power of concentration and become magnetic and powerful.
If you want to get more out of life you must think more of love.
Unless you have real affection for something, you have no
sentiment, no sweetness, no magnetism. So arouse your love
affections by your will and enter into a fuller life.
The hand of love always magnetizes, but it must be steady and
controlled. Love can be concentrated in your hand shake, and this
is one of the best ways to influence another.
The next time you feel yourself becoming irritable, use your will
and be patient. This is a very good exercise in self-control. It
will help you to keep patient if you will breathe slowly and
deeply. If you find you are commencing to speak fast, just
control yourself and speak slowly and clearly. Keep from either
raising or lowering your voice and concentrate on the fact that
you are determined to keep your poise, and you will improve your
power of concentration.
When you meet people of some consequence, assume a reposeful
attitude before them. Do this at all times. Watch both them and
yourself. Static exercises develop the motor faculties and
increase the power of concentration. If you feel yourself getting
irritable, nervous or weak, stand squarely on your feet with your
chest up and inhale deeply and you will see that your
irritability will disappear and a silent calm will pass over you.
If you are in the habit of associating with nervous, irritable
people, quit it until you grow strong in the power of
concentration, because irritable, angry, fretful, dogmatic and
disagreeable people will weaken what powers of resistance you
Any exercises that give you better control of the ears, fingers,
eyes, feet, help you to steady your mind; when your eye is
steady, your mind is steady. One of the best ways to study a
person is to watch his physical movements, for, when we study his
actions, we are studying his mind. Because actions are the
expressions of the mind. As the mind is, so is the action. If it
is uneasy, restless, erratic, unsteady, its actions are the same.
When it is composed, the mind is composed. Concentration means
control of the mind and body. You cannot secure control over one
without the other.
Many people who seem to lack ambition have sluggish minds. They
are steady, patient and seemingly have good control, but this
does not say they are able to concentrate. These people are
indolent, inactive, slow and listless, because they lack energy;
they do not lose control because they have little force to
control. They have no temper and it therefore cannot disturb
them. Their actions are steady because they possess little
energy. The natural person is internally strong, energetic and
forceful, but his energy, force and strength, thoughts and
physical movements are well under his control.
If a person does not have energy, both mental and physical, he
must develop it. If he has energy which he cannot direct and hold
to a point he must learn to do so. A man may be very capable,
but, unless he Wills to control his abilities, they will not do
him any good.
We hear so much talk about the benefit of physical culture, but
the real benefit of this is really lost sight of. There is
nothing that holds the faculties at work in a sustained and
continuous manner as static exercises do. For, as stated before,
when you learn to control the body, you are gaining control over
LESSON III. HOW TO GAIN WHAT YOU WANT THROUGH CONCENTRATION
The ignorant person may say, "How can you get anything by merely
wanting it? I say that through concentration you can get anything
you want. Every desire can be gratified. But whether it is, will
depend upon you concentrating to have that desire fulfilled.
Merely wishing for something will not bring it. Wishing you had
something shows a weakness and not a belief that you will really
get it. So never merely wish, as we are not living in a "fairy
age." You use up just as much brain force in "vain imaginings" as
you do when you think of something worth while.
Be careful of your desires, make a mental picture of what you
want and set your will to this until it materializes. Never allow
yourself to drift without helm or rudder. Know what you want to
do, and strive with all your might to do it, and you will
Feel that you can accomplish anything you undertake. Many
undertake to do things, but feel when they start they are going
to fail and usually they do. I will give an illustration. A man
goes to a store for an article. The clerk says, "I am sorry, we
have not it." But the man that is determined to get that thing
inquires if he doesn't know where he can get it. Again receiving
an unsatisfactory answer the determined buyer consults the
manager and finally he finds where the article can be bought.
That is the whole secret of concentrating on getting what you
want. And, remember, your soul is a center of all-power, and you
can accomplish what you will to. "I'll find a way or make one!"
is the spirit that wins. I know a man that is now head of a large
bank. He started there as a messenger boy. His father had a
button made for him with a "P" on it and put it on his coat. He
said, "Son, that 'P' is a reminder that some day you are to be
the president of your bank. I want you to keep this thought in
your mind. Every day do something that will put you nearer your
goal." Each night after supper he would say, "Son, what did you
do today?" In this way the thought was always kept in mind. He
concentrated on becoming president of that bank, and he did. His
father told him never to tell anyone what that "P" stood for. A
good deal of fun was made of it by his associates. And they tried
to find out what it stood for, but they never did until he was
made president and then he told the secret.
Don't waste your mental powers in wishes. Don't dissipate your
energies by trying to satisfy every whim. Concentrate on doing
something really worth while. The man that sticks to something is
not the man that fails.
"Power to him who power exerts."--Emerson.
Success to-day depends largely on concentrating on the Interior
law of force, for when you do this you awaken those thought
powers or forces, which, when used in business, insures permanent
Until you are able to do this you have not reached your limit in
the use of your forces. This great universe is interwoven with
myriads of forces. You make your own place, and whether it is
important depends upon you. Through the Indestructible and
Unconquerable Law you can in time accomplish all right things and
therefore do not be afraid to undertake whatever you really
desire to accomplish and are willing to pay for in effort.
Anything that is right is possible. That which is necessary will
inevitably take place. If something is right it is your duty to
do it, though the whole world thinks it to be wrong. "God and one
are always a majority," or in plain words, that omnipotent
interior law which is God, and the organism that represents you
is able to conquer the whole world if your cause is absolutely
just. Don't say I wish I was a great man. You can do anything
that is proper and you want to do. Just say: You can. You will.
You must. Just realize this and the rest is easy. You have the
latent faculties and forces to subdue anything that tries to
interfere with your plans.
t. I-am-ready-for-them. My-soul-is-unconquerable.
LESSON IV. CONCENTRATION, THE SILENT FORCE THAT PRODUCES RESULTS
IN ALL BUSINESS
I want you first to realize how powerful thought is. A thought of
fear has turned a person's hair gray in a night. A prisoner
condemned to die was told that if he would consent to an
experiment and lived through it he would be freed. He consented.
They wanted to see how much blood a person could lose and still
live. They arranged that blood would apparently drop from a cut
made in his leg. The cut made was very slight, from which
practically no blood escaped. The room was darkened, and the
prisoner thought the dropping he heard was really coming from his
leg. The next morning he was dead through mental fear.
The two above illustrations will give you a little idea of the
power of thought. To thoroughly realize the power of thought is
worth a great deal to you.
Through concentrated thought power you can make yourself whatever
you please. By thought you can greatly increase your efficiency
and strength. You are surrounded by all kinds of thoughts, some
good, others bad, and you are sure to absorb some of the latter
if you do not build up a positive mental attitude.
If you will study the needless moods of anxiety, worry,
despondency, discouragement and others that are the result of
uncontrolled thoughts, you will realize how important the control
of your thoughts are. Your thoughts make you what you are.
When I walk along the street and study the different people's
faces I can tell how they spent their lives. It all shows in
their faces, just like a mirror reflects their physical
countenances. In looking in those faces I cannot help thinking
how most of the people you see have wasted their lives.
The understanding of the power of thought will awaken
possibilities within you that you never dreamed of. Never forget
that your thoughts are making your environment, your friends, and
as your thoughts change these will also. Is this not a practical
lesson to learn? Good thoughts are constructive. Evil thoughts
are destructive. The desire to do right carries with it a great
power. I want you to thoroughly realize the importance of your
thoughts, and how to make them valuable, to understand that your
thoughts come to you over invisible wires and influence you.
If your thoughts are of a high nature, you become connected with
people of the same mental caliber and you are able to help
yourself. If your thoughts are tricky, you will bring tricky
people to deal with you, who will try to cheat you.
If your thoughts are right kind, you will inspire confidence in
those with whom you are dealing.
As you gain the good will of others your confidence and strength
will increase. You will soon learn the wonderful value of your
thoughts and how serene you can become even when circumstances
are the most trying.
Such thoughts of Right and Good Will bring you into harmony with
people that amount to something in the world and that are able to
give you help if you should need it, as nearly everyone does at
You can now see why it is so important to concentrate your
thoughts in the proper channels. It is very necessary that people
should have confidence in you. When two people meet they have not
the time to look each other up. They accept each other according
to instinct which can usually be relied on.
You meet a person and his attitude creates a suspicion in you.
The chances are you cannot tell why, but something tells you,
"Have no dealings with him, for if you do, you will be sorry."
Thoughts produce actions. Therefore be careful of your thoughts.
Your life will be molded by the thoughts you have. A spiritual
power is always available to your thought, and when you are
worthy you can attract all the good things without a great effort
on your part.
The sun's rays shine down on our gardens, but we can plant trees
that will interfere with the sun light. There are invisible
forces ready to help you if you do not think and act to intercept
these. These forces work silently. "You reap what you sow."
You have concentrated within powers that if developed will bring
you happiness greater than you can even imagine. Most people go
rushing through life, literally driving away the very things they
seek. By concentration you can revolutionize your life,
accomplish infinitely more and without a great effort.
Look within yourself and you will find the greatest machine ever
How to Speak Wisely. In order to speak wisely you must secure at
least a partial concentration of the faculties and forces upon
the subject at hand. Speech interferes with the focusing powers
of the mind, as it withdraws the attention to the external and
therefore is hardly to be compared with that deep silence of the
subconscious mind, where deep thoughts, and the silent forces of
high potency are evolved. It is necessary to be silent before you
can speak wisely. The person that is really alert and well poised
and able to speak wisely under trying circumstances, is the
person that has practiced in the silence. Most people do not know
what the silence is and think it is easy to go into the silence,
but this is not so. In the real silence we become attached to
that interior law and the forces become silent, because they are
in a state of high potency, or beyond the vibratory sounds to
which our external ears are attuned. He who desires to become
above the ordinary should open up for himself the interior
channels which lead to the absolute law of the omnipotent. You
can only do this by persistently and intelligently practicing
thought concentration. Hold the thought:
In the next chapter I will tell you of the mysterious law, which
links all humanity together, by the powers of co-operative
thought, and chooses for us companionship and friends.
LESSON V. HOW CONCENTRATED THOUGHT LINKS ALL HUMANITY TOGETHER
It is within your power to gratify your every wish. Success is
the result of the way you think. I will show you how to think to
The power to rule and attract success is within yourself. The
barriers that shut these off from you are subject to your
control. You have unlimited power to think and this is the link
that connects you with your omniscient source.
Success is the result of certain moods of mind or ways of
thinking. These moods can be controlled by you and produced at
You have been evolved to what you are from a lowly atom because
you possessed the power to think. This power will never leave
you, but will keep urging you on until you reach perfection. As
you evolve, you create new desires and these can be gratified.
The power to rule lies within you. The barriers that keep you
from ruling are also within you. These are the barriers of
Concentrated thought will accomplish seemingly impossible results
and make you realize your fondest ambitions. At the same time
that you break down barriers of limitation new ambitions will be
awakened. You begin to experience conscious thought
If you will just realize that through deep concentration you
become linked with thoughts of omnipotence, you will kill out
entirely your belief in your limitations and at the same time
will drive away all fear and other negative and destructive
thought forces which constantly work against you. In the place of
these you will build up a strong assurance that your every
venture will be successful. When you learn thus how to
concentrate and reinforce your thought, you control your mental
creations; they in turn help to mould your physical environment,
and you become the master of circumstances and the ruler of your
It is just as easy to surround your life with what you want as it
is with what you don't want. It is a question to be decided by
your will. There are no walls to prevent you from getting what
you want, providing you want what is right. If you choose
something that is not right, you are in opposition to the
omnipotent plans of the universe and deserve to fail. But, if you
will base your desires on justice and good will, you avail
yourself of the helpful powers of universal currents, and instead
of having a handicap to work against, can depend upon ultimate
success, though the outward appearances may not at first be
Never stop to think of temporary appearances, but maintain an
unfaltering belief in your ultimate success. Make your plans
carefully, and see that they are not contrary to the tides of
universal justice. The main thing for you to remember is to keep
at bay the destructive and opposing forces of fear and anger and
There is no power so great as the belief which comes from the
knowledge that your thought is in harmony with the divine laws of
thought and the sincere conviction that your cause is right. You
may be able seemingly to accomplish results for a time even if
your cause is unjust, but the results will be temporary, and, in
time, you will have to tear down your thought edifice and build
on the true foundation of Right.
Plans that are not built on truth produce discordant vibrations
and are therefore self-destructive. Never try to build until you
can build right. It is a waste of time to do anything else. You
may temporarily put aside your desire to do right, but its true
vibrations will interfere with your unjust plans until you are
forced back into righteous paths of power.
All just causes succeed in time, though temporarily they may
fail. So if you should face the time when everything seems
against you, quiet your fears, drive away all destructive
thoughts and uphold the dignity of your moral and spiritual life.
"Where There Is A Will There Is A Way." The reason this is so is
that the Will can make a way if given the chance to secure the
assistance of aiding forces. The more it is developed the higher
the way to which it will lead.
When everything looks gloomy and discouraging, then is the time
to show what you are made of by rejoicing that you can control
your moods by making them as calm, serene and bright as if
prosperity were yours.
"Be faithful in sowing the thought seeds of success, in perfect
trust that the sun will not cease to shine and bring a generous
harvest in one season."
It is not always necessary to think of the success of a venture
when you are actually engaged in it. For when the body is
inactive the mind is most free to catch new ideas that will
further the opportunity you are seeking. When you are actually
engaged in doing something, you are thinking in the channels you
have previously constructed and the work does not have to be done
When you are in a negative mood the intuitions are more active,
for you are not then controlling your thoughts by the will.
Everything we do. should have the approval of the intuition.
When you are in a negative mood you attract thoughts of similar
nature through the law of affinity. That is why it is so
important to form thoughts of a success nature to attract similar
ones. If you have never made a study of this subject, you may
think this is all foolishness, but it is a fact that there are
thought currents that unerringly bring thoughts of a similar
nature. Many persons who think of failure actually attract
failure by their worries, their anxieties, their overactivity.
These thoughts are bound to bring failure. When you once learn
the laws of thought and think of nothing but Good, Truth,
Success, you will make more progress with less effort than you
ever made before.
There are forces that can aid the mind that are hardly dreamed of
by the average person. When you learn to believe more in the
value of thought and its laws you will be led aright and your
business gains will multiply.
The following method may assist you in gaining better thought
control. If you are unable to control your fears, just say to
your faulty determination, "Do not falter or be afraid, for I am
not really alone. I am surrounded by invisible forces that will
assist me to remove the unfavorable appearances." Soon you will
have more courage. The only difference between the fearless man
and the fearful one is in his will, his hope. So if you lack
success, believe in it, hope for it, claim it. You can use the
same method to brace up your thoughts of desire, aspiration,
imagination, expectation, ambition, understanding, trust and
If you get anxious, angry, discouraged, undecided or worried, it
is because you are not receiving the co-operation of the higher
powers of your mind. By your Will you can so organize the powers
of the mind that your moods change only as you want them to
instead of as circumstances affect you.
I was recently asked if I advised concentrating on what you eat,
or what you see while walking. My reply was that no matter what
you may be doing, when in practice think of nothing else but that
act at the time. The idea is to be able to control your
unimportant acts, otherwise you set up a habit that it will be
hard to overcome, because your faculties have not been in the
habit of concentrating. Your faculties cannot be disorganized one
minute and organized the next. If you allow the mind to wander
while you are doing small things, it will be likely to get into
mischief and make it hard to concentrate on the important act
when it comes.
The man that is able to concentrate is the happy, busy man. Time
does not drag with him. He always has plenty to do. He does not
have time to think over past mistakes, which would make him
If despite our discouragement and failures, we claim our great
heritage, "life and truth and force, like an electric current,"
will permeate our lives until we enter into our "birthright in
The will does not act with clearness, decision and promptness
unless it is trained to do so. There are comparatively few that
really know what they are doing every minute of the day. This is
because they do not observe with sufficient orderliness and
accuracy to know what they are doing. It is not difficult to know
what you us doing all the time, if you will just practice
concentration and with a reposeful deliberation, and train
yourself to think clearly, promptly, and decisive. If you allow
yourself to worry or hurry in what you are doing, this will not
be clearly photographed upon the sensitized plate of the
subjective mind, and you therefore will not be really conscious
of your actions. So practice accuracy and concentration of
thought, and also absolute truthfulness and you will soon be able
LESSON VI. THE TRAINING OF THE WILL TO DO
The Will To Do is the greatest power in the world that is
concerned with human accomplishment and no one can in advance
determine its limits.
The things that we do now would have been a few ages ago
impossibilities. Today the safe maxim is: "All things are
The Will To Do is a force that is strictly practical, yet it is
difficult to explain just what it is. It can be compared to
electricity because we know it only through its cause and
effects. It is a power we can direct and to just the extent we
direct it do we determine our future. Every time you accomplish
any definite act, consciously or unconsciously, you use the
principle of the Will. You can Will to do anything whether it is
right or wrong, and therefore the way you use your will makes a
big difference in your life.
Every person possesses some "Will To Do." It is the inner energy
which controls all conscious acts. What you will to do directs
your life forces. All habits, good or bad, are the result of what
you will to do. You improve or lower your condition in life by
what you will to do. Your will has a connection with all avenues
of knowledge, all activities, all accomplishment.
You probably know of cases where people have shown wonderful
strength under some excitement, similar to the following: The
house of a farmer's wife caught on fire. No one was around to
help her move anything. She was a frail woman, and ordinarily was
considered weak. On this occasion she removed things from the
house that it later took three men to handle. It was the "Will To
Do" that she used to accomplish her task.
Genius Is But A Will To Do Little Things With Infinite Pains.
Little Things Well Done Open The Door Of Opportunity For Bigger
The Will accomplishes its greater results through activities that
grow out of great concentration in acquiring the power of
voluntary attention to such an extent that we can direct it where
we will and hold it steadily to its task until our aim is
accomplished. When you learn so to use it, your Will Power
becomes a mighty force. Almost everything can be accomplished
through its proper use. It is greater than physical force because
it can be used to control not only physical but mental and moral
There are very few that possess perfectly developed and balanced
Will Power, but those who do easily crush out their weak
qualities. Study yourself carefully. Find out your greatest
weakness and then use your will power to overcome it. In this way
eradicate your faults, one by one, until you have built up a
strong character and personality.
Rules for Improvement. A desire arises. Now think whether this
would be good for you. If it is not, use your Will Power to kill
out the desire, but, on the other hand, if it is a righteous
desire, summon all your Will Power to your aid, crush all
obstacles that confront you and secure possession of the coveted
Slowness in Making Decisions. This is a weakness of Will Power.
You know you should do something, but you delay doing it through
lack of decision. It is easier not to do a certain thing than to
do it, but conscience says to do it. The vast majority of persons
are failures because of the lack of deciding to do a thing when
it should be done. Those that are successful have been quick to
grasp opportunities by making a quick decision. This power of
will can be used to bring culture, wealth and health.
Some Special Pointers. For the next week try to make quicker
decisions in your little daily affairs. Set the hour you wish to
get up and arise exactly at the fixed time. Anything that you
should accomplish, do on or ahead of time. You want, of course,
to give due deliberation to weighty matters, but by making quick
decisions on little things you will acquire the ability to make
quick decisions in bigger things. Never procrastinate. Decide
quickly one way or the other even at the risk of deciding wrong.
Practice this for a week or two and notice your improvement.
The Lack of Initiative. This, too, keeps many men from
succeeding. They have fallen into the way of imitating others in
all that they do. Very often we hear the expression, "He seems
clever enough, but he lacks initiative." Life for them is one
continuous grind. Day after day they go through the same
monotonous round of duties, while those that are "getting along"
are using their initiative to get greater fullness of life. There
is nothing so responsible for poverty as this lack of initiative,
this power to think and do for ourselves.
You Are as Good as Anyone. You have will power, and if you use
it, you will get your share of the luxuries of life. So use it to
claim your own. Don't depend on anyone else to help you. We have
to fight our own battles. All the world loves a fighter, while
the coward is despised by all.
Every person's problems are different, so I can only say "analyze
your opportunities and conditions and study your natural
abilities." Form plans for improvement and then put them into
operation. Now, as I said before, don't just say, "I am going to
do so and so," but carry your plan into execution. Don't make an
indefinite plan, but a definite one, and then don't give up until
your object has been accomplished. Put these suggestions into
practice with true earnestness, and you will soon note
astonishing results, and your whole life will be completely
changed. An excellent motto for one of pure motives is: Through
my will power I dare do what I want to. You will find this
affirmation has a very strengthening effect.
The Spirit of Perseverance. The spirit of "sticktoitiveness" is
the one that wins. Many go just so far and then give up, whereas,
if they had persevered a little longer, they would have won out.
Many have much initiative, but instead of concentrating it into
one channel, they diffuse it through several, thereby dissipating
it to such an extent that its effect is lost.
Develop more determination, which is only the Will To Do, and
when you start out to do something stick to it until you get
results. Of course, before starting anything you must look ahead
and see what the "finish leads to." You must select a road that
will lead to "somewhere," rather than "nowhere." The journey must
be productive of some kind of substantial results. The trouble
with so many young men is that they launch enterprises without
any end in sight. It is not so much the start as the finish of a
journey that counts. Each little move should bring you nearer the
goal which you planned to reach before the enterprise began.
Lack of Perseverance is nothing but the lack of the Will To Do.
It takes the same energy to say, "I will continue," as to say, "I
give up." Just the moment you say the latter you shut off your
dynamo, and your determination is gone. Every time you allow your
determination to be broken you weaken it. Don't forget this. Just
the instant you notice your determination beginning to weaken,
concentrate on it and by sheer Will Power make it continue on the
Never try to make a decision when you are not in a calm state of
mind. If in a "quick temper," you are likely to say things you
afterwards regret. In anger, you follow impulse rather than
reason. No one can expect to achieve success if he makes
decisions when not in full control of his mental forces.
Therefore make it a fixed rule to make decisions only when at
your best. If you have a "quick temper," you can quickly gain
control over it by simple rule of counting backwards. To count
backwards requires concentration, and you thus quickly regain a
calm state. In this way you can break the "temper habit."
It will do you a lot of good to think over what you said and
thought the last time you were angry. Persevere until you see
yourself as others see you. It would do no harm to write the
scene out in story form and then sit in judgment of the character
that played your part.
Special Instructions to Develop the Will To Do. This is a form of
mental energy, but requires the proper mental attitude to make it
manifest. We hear of people having wonderful will power, which
really is wrong. It should be said that they use their will power
while with many it is a latent force. I want you to realize that
no one has a monopoly on will power. There is plenty for all.
What we speak of as will power is but the gathering together of
mental energy, the concentration power at one point. So never
think of that person as having a stronger will than yours. Each
person will be supplied with just that amount of will power that
he demands. You don't have to develop will power if you
constantly make use of all you have, and remember the way in
which you use it determines your fate, for your life is moulded
to great extent by the use you make of your will. Unless you make
proper use of it you have neither independence nor firmness. You
are unable to control yourself and become a mere machine for
others to use. It is more important to learn to use your will
than to develop your intellect. The man that has not learned how
to use his will rarely decides things for himself, but allows his
resolutions to be changed by others. He fluctuates from one
opinion to another, and of course does not accomplish anything
out of the ordinary, while his brother with the trained will
takes his place among the world's leaders.
LESSON VII. THE CONCENTRATED MENTAL DEMAND
The Mental Demand is the potent force in achievement. The
attitude of the mind affects the expression of the face,
determines action, changes our physical condition and regulates
I will not here attempt to explain the silent force that achieves
results. You want to develop your mental powers so you can effect
the thing sought, and that is what I want to teach you. There is
wonderful power and possibility in the concentrated Mental
Demand. This, like all other forces, is controlled by laws. It
can, like all other forces, be wonderfully increased by
consecutive, systematized effort.
The mental demand must be directed by every power of the mind and
every possible element should be used to make the demand
materialize. You can so intently desire a thing that you can
exclude all distracting thoughts. When you practice this
singleness of concentration until you attain the end sought, you
have developed a Will capable of accomplishing whatever you wish.
As long as you can only do the ordinary things you will be
counted in the mass of mediocrity. But just as quick as you
surpass others by even comparatively small measure, you are
classed as one of life's successes. So, if you wish to emerge
into prominence, you must accomplish something more than the
ordinary man or woman. It is easy to do this if you will but
concentrate on what you desire, and put forth your best effort.
It is not the runner with the longest legs or the strongest
muscles that wins the race, but the one that can put forth the
greatest desire force. You can best understand this by thinking
of an engine. The engine starts up slowly, the engineer gradually
extending the throttle to the top notch. It is then keyed up to
its maximum speed. The same is true of two runners. They start
off together and gradually they increase their desire to go
faster. The one that has the greatest intensity of desire will
win. He may outdistance the other by only a fraction of an inch,
yet he gets the laurels.
The men that are looked upon as the world's successes have not
always been men of great physical power, nor at the start did
they seem very well adapted to the conditions which encompassed
them. In the beginning they were not considered men of superior
genius, but they won their success by their resolution to achieve
results in their undertakings by permitting no set-back to
dishearten them; no difficulties to daunt them. Nothing could
turn them or influence them against their determination. They
never lost sight of their goal. In all of us there is this silent
force of wonderful power. If developed, it can overcome
conditions that would seem insurmountable. It is constantly
urging us on to greater achievement. The more we become
acquainted with it the better strategists we become, the more
courage we develop and the greater the desire within us for
self-expression in activity along many lines.
No one will ever be a failure if he becomes conscious of this
silent force within that controls his destiny. But without the
consciousness of this inner force, you will not have a clear
vision, and external conditions will not yield to the power of
your mind. It is the mental resolve that makes achievement
possible. Once this has been formed it should never be allowed to
cease to press its claim until its object is attained. To make
plans work out it will, at times, be necessary to use every power
of your mind. Patience, perseverance and all the indomitable
forces within one will have to be mustered and used with the
Perseverance is the first element of success. In order to
persevere you must be ceaseless in your application. It requires
you to concentrate your thoughts upon your undertaking and bring
every energy to bear upon keeping them focused upon it until you
have accomplished your aim. To quit short of this is to weaken
all future efforts.
The Mental Demand seems an unreal power because it is intangible;
but it is the mightiest power in the world. It is a power that is
free for you to use. No one can use it for you. The Mental Demand
is not a visionary one. It is a potent force, which you can use
freely without cost. When you are in doubt it will counsel you.
It will guide you when you are uncertain. When you are in fear it
will give you courage. It is the motive power which supplies the
energies necessary to the achievement of the purpose. You have a
large store house of possibilities. The Mental Demand makes
possibilities realities. It supplies everything necessary for the
accomplishment, It selects the tools and instructs how to use
them. It makes you understand the situation. Every time you make
a Mental Demand you strengthen the brain centers by drawing to
you external forces.
Few realize the power of a Mental Demand. It is possible to make
your demand so strong that you can impart what you have to say to
another without speaking to him. Have you ever, after planning to
discuss a certain matter with a friend, had the experience of
having him broach the subject before you had a chance to speak of
it? Have you ever, in a letter, made a suggestion to a friend
that he carried out before your letter reached him? Have you ever
wanted to speak to a person who, just then walked in or
telephoned. I have had many such responses to thought and you and
your friends have doubtless experienced them, too.
These two things are neither coincidences nor accidents, but are
the results of mental demand launched by strong concentration.
The person that never wants anything gets little. To demand
resolutely is the first step toward getting what you want.
The power of the Mental Demand seems absolute, the supply
illimitable. The mental demand projects itself and causes to
materialize the conditions and opportunities needed to accomplish
the purpose. Do not think I over estimate the value of the Mental
Demand. It brings the fuller life if used for only righteous
purposes. Once the Mental Demand is made, however, never let it
falter. If you do the current that connects you with your desire
is broken. Take all the necessary time to build a firm
foundation, so that there need not be even an element of doubt to
creep in. Just the moment you entertain "doubt" you lose some of
the demand force, and force once lost is hard to regain. So
whenever you make a mental demand hold steadfastly to it until
your need is supplied.
I want to repeat again that Power of Mental Demand is not a
visionary one. It is concentrated power only, and can be used by
you. It is not supernatural power, but requires a development of
the brain centers. The outcome is sure when it is given with a
strong resolute determination.
No person will advance to any great extent, until he recognizes
this force within him. If you have not become aware of it, you
have not made very much of a success of your life. It is this
"something" that distinguishes that "man" from other men. It is
this subtle power that develops strong personality.
If you want a great deal you must demand a great deal. Once you
make your demand, anticipate its fulfillment. It depends upon us.
We are rewarded according to our efforts. The Power of Mental
Demand can bring us what we want. We become what we determine to
be. We control our own destiny.
Get the right mental attitude, then in accordance with your
ability you can gain success.
And every man of AVERAGE ability, the ordinary man that you see
about you, can be really successful, independent, free of worry,
HIS OWN MASTER, if he can manage to do just two things.
First, remain forever dissatisfied with what he IS doing and with
what he HAS accomplished.
Second, develop in his mind a belief that the word impossible was
not intended or him. Build up in his mind the confidence that
enables the mind to use its power.
Many, especially the older men, will ask:
"How can I build up that self-confidence in my brain? How can I,
after months and years of discouragement, of dull plodding,
suddenly conceive and carry out a plan for doing something that
will mike life worth while and change the monotonous routine?
"How can a man get out of a rut after he has been in it for years
and has settled down to the slow jog-trot that leads to the
The answer is the thing can be done, and millions have done it.
One of the names most honored among the great men of France is
that of Littre, who wrote and compiled the great French
dictionary--a monument of learning. He is the man whose place
among the forty immortals of France was taken by the great
Pasteur, when the latter was elected to the Academy.
Littre BEGAN the work that makes him famous when he was more than
sixty years old.
LESSON VIII. CONCENTRATION GIVES MENTAL POISE
You will find that the man that concentrates is well poised,
whereas the man that allows his mind to wander is easily upset.
When in this state wisdom does not pass from the subconscious
storehouse into the consciousness. There must be mental quiet
before the two consciousnesses can work in harmony. When you are
able to concentrate you have peace of mind.
If you are in the habit of losing your poise, form the habit of
reading literature that has a quieting power. Just the second you
feel your poise slipping, say, "Peace," and then hold this
thought in mind and you will never lose your self-control.
There cannot be perfect concentration until there is peace of
mind. So keep thinking peace, acting peace, until you are at
peace with all the world. For when once you have reached this
state there will be no trouble to concentrate on anything you
When you have peace of mind you are not timid or anxious, or
fearful, or rigid and you will not allow any disturbing thought
to influence you. You cast aside all fears, and think of yourself
as a spark of the Divine Being, as a manifestation of the "One
Universal Principle" that fills all space and time. Think of
yourself thus as a child of the infinite, possessing infinite
Write on a piece of paper, "I have the power to do and to be
whatever I wish to do and be." Keep this mentally before you, and
you will find the thought will be of great help to you.
The Mistake of Concentrating on Your Business While Away. In
order to be successful today, you must concentrate, but don't
become a slave to concentration, and carry your business cares
home. Just as sure as you do you will be burning the life forces
at both ends and the fire will go out much sooner than was
Many men become so absorbed in their business that when they go
to church they do not hear the preacher because their minds are
on their business. If they go to the theater they do not enjoy it
because their business is on their minds. When they go to bed
they think about business instead of sleep and wonder why they
don't sleep. This is the wrong kind of concentration and is
dangerous. It is involuntary. When you are unable to get anything
out of your mind it becomes unwholesome as any thought held
continuously causes weariness of the flesh. It is a big mistake
to let a thought rule you, instead of ruling it. He who does not
rule himself is not a success. If you cannot control your
concentration, your health will suffer.
So never become so absorbed with anything that you cannot lay it
aside and take up another. This is self-control.
Concentration Is Paying Attention to a Chosen Thought. Everything
that passes before the eye makes an impression on the
subconscious mind, but unless you pay attention to some certain
thing you will not remember what you saw. For instance if you
walked down a busy street without seeing anything that attracted
your particular attention, you could not recall anything you saw.
So you see only what attracts your attention. If you work you
only see and remember what you think about. When you concentrate
on something it absorbs your whole thought.
Self-Study Valuable. Everyone has some habits that can be
overcome by concentration. We will say for instance, you are in
the habit of complaining, or finding fault with yourself or
others; or, imagining that you do not possess the ability of
others; or feeling that you are not as good as someone else; or
that you cannot rely on yourself; or harboring any similar
thoughts or thoughts of weakness. These should be cast aside and
instead thoughts of strength should be put in their place. Just
remember every time you think of yourself as being weak, in some
way you are making yourself so by thinking you are. Our mental
conditions make us what we are. Just watch yourself and see how
much time you waste in worrying, fretting and complaining. The
more of it you do the worse off you are.
Just the minute you are aware of thinking a negative thought
immediately change to a positive one. If you start to think of
failure, change to thinking of success. You have the germ of
success within you. Care for it the same as the setting hen
broods over the eggs and you can make it a reality.
You can make those that you come in contact with feel as you do,
because you radiate vibrations of the way you feel and your
vibrations are felt by others. When you concentrate on a certain
thing you turn all the rays of your vibrations on this. Thought
is the directing power of all Life's vibrations. If a person
should enter a room with a lot of people and feel as if he were a
person of no consequence no one would know he was there unless
they saw him, and even if they did, they would not remember
seeing him, because they were not attracted towards him. But let
him enter the room feeling that he was magnetic and concentrating
on this thought, others would feel his vibration. So remember the
way you feel you can make others feel. This is the law. Make
yourself a concentrated dynamo from which your thoughts vibrate
to others. Then you are a power in the world. Cultivate the art
of feeling, for as I said before you can only make others feel
what you feel.
If you will study all of the great characters of history you will
find that they were enthusiastic. First they were enthusiastic
themselves, and then they could arouse others' enthusiasm. It is
latent in everyone. It is a wonderful force when once aroused.
All public men to be a success have to possess it. Cultivate it
by concentration. Set aside some hour of the day, wherein to hold
rapt converse with the soul. Meditate with sincere desire and
contrite heart and you will be able to accomplish that which you
have meditated on. This is the keynote of success.
"Think, speak and act just as you wish to be, And you will be
that which you wish to be."
You are just what you think you are and not what you may appear
to be. You may fool others but not yourself. You may control your
life and actions just as you can control your hands. If you want
to raise your hand you must first think of raising it. If you
want to control your life you must first control your thinking.
Easy to do, is it not? Yes it is, if you will but concentrate on
what you think about.
For he only can
That says he will.
How can we secure concentration? To this question, the first and
last answer must be: By interest and strong motive. The stronger
the motive the greater the concentration.--Eustace Miller, M. D.
The Successful Lives Are the Concentrated Lives. The utterly
helpless multitude that sooner or later have to be cared for by
charity, are those that were never able to concentrate, and who
have become the victims of negative ideas.
Train yourself so you will be able to centralize your thought and
develop your brain power, and increase your mental energy, or you
can be a slacker, a drifter, a quitter or a sleeper. It all
depends on how you concentrate, or centralize your thoughts. Your
thinking then becomes a fixed power and you do not waste time
thinking about something that would not be good for you. You pick
out the thoughts that will be the means of bringing you what you
desire, and they become a material reality. Whatever we create in
the thought world will some day materialize. That is the law.
Don't forget this.
In the old days men drifted without concentration but this is a
day of efficiency and therefore all of our efforts must be
concentrated, if we are to win any success worth the name.
Why People Often Do Not Get What They Concentrate On. Because
they sit down in hopeless despair and expect it to come to them.
But if they will just reach out for it with their biggest effort
they will find it is within their reach. No one limits us but
ourselves. We are what we are today as the result of internal
conditions. We can control the external conditions. They are
subject to our will.
Through our concentration we can attract what we want, because we
became enrapport with the Universal forces, from which we can get
what we want.
You have watched races no doubt. They all line up together. Each
has his mind set on getting to the goal before the others. This
is one kind of concentration. A man starts to think on a certain
subject. He has all kinds of thoughts come to him, but by
concentration he shuts out all these but the one he has chosen.
Concentration is just a case of willing to do a certain thing and
If you want to accomplish anything first put yourself in a
concentrating, reposeful, receptive, acquiring frame of mind. In
tackling unfamiliar work make haste slowly and deliberately and
then you will secure that interior activity, which is never
possible when you are in a hurry or under a strain. When you
"think hard" or try to hurry results too quickly, you generally
shut off the interior flow of thoughts and ideas. You have often
no doubt tried hard to think of something but could not, but just
as soon as you stopped trying to think of it, it came to you.
LESSON IX. CONCENTRATION CAN OVERCOME BAD HABITS
Habits make or break us to a far greater extent than we like to
admit. Habit is both a powerful enemy and wonderful ally of
concentration. You must learn to overcome habits which are
injurious to concentration, and to cultivate those which increase
The large majority of people are controlled by their habits and
are buffeted around by them like waves of the ocean tossing a
piece of wood. They do things in a certain way because of the
power of habit. They seldom ever think of concentrating on why
they do them this or that way, or study to see if they could do
them in a better way. Now my object in this chapter is to get you
to concentrate on your habits so you can find out which are good
and which are bad for you. You will find that by making a few
needed changes you can make even those that are not good for you,
of service; the good habits you can make much better.
The first thing I want you to realize is that all habits are
governed consciously or unconsciously by the will. Most of us are
forming new habits all the time. Very often, if you repeat
something several times in the same way, you will have formed the
habit of doing it that way. But the oftener you repeat it the
stronger that habit grows and the more deeply it becomes embedded
in your nature. After a habit has been in force for a long time,
it becomes almost a part of you, and is therefore hard to
overcome. But you can still break any habit by strong
concentration on its opposite.
"All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of
habits--practical, emotional, and intellectual--systematically
organized, for our weal or woe, and bearing us irresistibly
toward our destiny whatever the latter may be."
We are creatures of habits, "imitators and copiers of our past
selves." We are liable to be "bent" or "curved" as we can bend a
piece of paper, and each fold leaves a crease, which makes it
easier to make the fold there the next time. "The intellect and
will are spiritual functions; still they are immersed in matter,
and to every movement of theirs, corresponds a movement in the
brain, that is, in their material correlative." This is why
habits of thought and habits of willing can be formed. All
physical impressions are the carrying out of the actions of the
will and intellect. Our nervous systems are what they are today,
because of the way they have been exercised.
As we grow older most of us become more and more like automatic
machines. The habits we have formed increase in strength. We work
in our old characteristic way. Your associates learn to expect
you to do things in a certain way. So you see that your habits
make a great difference in your life, and as it is just about as
easy to form good habits as it is bad, you should form only the
former. No one but yourself is responsible for your habits. You
are free to form the habits that you should and if everyone could
realize the importance of forming the right kind of habits what a
different world this would be. How much happier everyone would
be. Then all instead of the few might win success.
Habits are formed more quickly when we are young, but if we have
already passed the youthful plastic period the time to start to
control our habits is right now, as we will never be any younger.
You will find the following maxims worth remembering.
"We must make our nervous system our ally instead of our enemy."
"In the acquisition of a new habit as in the leaving off of an
old one, we must take care to launch ourselves with as strong and
decided an initiative as possible."
The man that is in the habit of doing the right thing from
boyhood, has only good motives, so it is very important for you
that you concentrate assiduously on the habits that reinforce
good motives. Surround yourself with every aid you can. Don't
play with fire by forming bad habits. Make a new beginning today.
Study why you have been doing certain things. If they are not for
your good, shun them henceforth. Don't give in to a single
temptation for every time you do, you strengthen the chain of bad
habits. Every time you keep a resolution you break the chain that
"Never allow an exception to occur till the new habit is securely
rooted in your life." Here is the idea, you never want to give
in, until the new habit is fixed else you undo all that has been
accomplished by previous efforts. There are two opposing
inclinations. One wants to be firm, and the other wants to give
in. By your will you can become firm, through repetition. Fortify
your will to be able to cope with any and all opposition.
"Seize the very first possible opportunity to act on every
resolution you make, and on every emotional prompting you may
experience in the direction of the habits you aspire to gain."
To make a resolve and not to keep it is of little value. So by
all means keep every resolution you make, for you not only profit
by the resolution, but it furnishes you with an exercise that
causes the brain cells and physiological correlatives to form the
habit of adjusting themselves to carry out resolutions. "A
tendency to act, becomes effectively engrained in us in
proportion to the uninterrupted frequency with which the actions
actually occur, and the brain `grows' to their use. When a
resolve or a fine glow of feeling is allowed to evaporate without
bearing fruit, it is worse than a chance lost."
If you keep your resolutions you form a most valuable habit. If
you break them you form a most dangerous one. So concentrate on
keeping them, whether important or unimportant, and remember it
is just as important for this purpose to keep the unimportant,
for by so doing you are forming the habit.
"Keep the faculty of effort alive in you by a little gratuitous
exercise every day."
The more we exercise the will, the better we can control our
habits. "Every few days do something for no other reason than its
difficulty, so that when the hour of dire need draws nigh, it may
find you not unnerved or untrained to stand the test. Asceticism
of this sort is like the insurance which a man pays on his house
and goods. The tax does him no good at the time, and possibly may
never bring him a return, but if the fire does come, his having
paid it will be his salvation from ruin. So with the man who has
daily insured himself to habits of concentrated attention,
energetic volation, and self-denial in unnecessary things. "He
will stand like a tower when everything rocks around him and his
softer fellow-mortals are winnowed like chaff in the blast."
The young should be made to concentrate on their habits and be
made to realize that if they don't they become walking bundles of
injurious habits. Youth is the plastic state, and should be
utilized in laying the foundation for a glorious future.
The great value of habit for good and evil cannot be
overestimated. "Habit is the deepest law of human nature." No man
is stronger than his habits, because his habits either build up
his strength or decrease it.
Why We Are Creatures of Habits. Habits have often been called a
labor-saying invention, because when they are formed they require
less of both mental and material strength. The more deeply the
habit becomes ingrained the more automatic it becomes. Therefore
habit is an economizing tendency of our nature, for if it were
not for habit we should have to be more watchful. We walk across
a crowded street; the habit of stopping and looking prevents us
from being hurt. The right kind of habits keeps us from making
mistakes and mishaps. It is a well known fact that a chauffeur is
not able to master his machine safely until he has trained his
body in a habitual way. When an emergency comes he instantly
knows what to do. Where safety depends on quickness the operator
must work automatically. Habits mean less risk, less fatigue, and
"You do not want to become a slave to habits of a trivial nature.
For instance, Wagner required a certain costume before he could
compose corresponding parts of his operas. Schiller could never
write with ease unless there were rotten apples in the drawer of
his desk from which he could now and then obtain an odor which
seemed to him sweet. Gladstone had different desks for his
different activities, so that when he worked on Homer he never
sat among habitual accompaniments of his legislative labors."
In order to overcome undesirable habits, two things are
necessary. You must have trained your will to do what you want it
to do, and the stronger the will the easier it will be to break a
habit. Then you must make a resolution to do just the opposite of
what the habit is. Therefore one habit must replace another. If
you have a strong will, you can tenaciously and persistently
concentrate on removing the bad habit and in a very short time
the good habit will gain the upper hand. I will bring this
chapter to a close by giving Doctor Oppenheim's instructions for
overcoming a habit:
"If you want to abolish a habit, and its accumulated
circumstances as well, you must grapple with the matter as
earnestly as you would with a physical enemy. You must go into
the encounter with all tenacity of determination, with all
fierceness of resolve--yea, even with a passion for success that
may be called vindictive. No human enemy can be as insidious, so
persevering, as unrelenting as an unfavorable habit. It never
sleeps, it needs no rest.
"It is like a parasite that grows with the growth of the
supporting body, and, like a parasite, it can best be killed by
violent separation and crushing.
When life is stormy and all seems against us, that is when we
often acquire wrong habits, and it is then, that we have to make
a gigantic effort to think and speak as we should; and even
though we may feel the very reverse at that moment the tiniest
effort will be backed up by a tremendous Power and will lift us
to a realization never felt before. It is not in the easy,
contented moments of our life that we make our greatest progress,
for then it requires, no special effort to keep in tune. But it
is when we are in the midst of trials and misfortunes, when we
think we are sinking, being overwhelmed, then it is important for
us to realize that we are linked to a great Power and if we live
as we should, there is nothing that can occur in life, which
could permanently injure us, nothing can happen that should
disturb us. So always remember you have within you unlimited
power, ready to manifest itself in the form which fills our need
at the moment. If, when we have something difficult to solve, we
would be silent like the child, we can get the inspiration when
it comes; we will know how to act, we will find there is no need
to hurry or disturb ourselves, that it is always wiser to wait
for guidance from within, than to act on impulse from Without.
LESSON X. BUSINESS RESULTS THROUGH CONCENTRATION
A successful business is not usually the result of chance.
Neither is a failure the result of luck. Most failures could be
determined in advance if the founders had been studied. It is not
always possible to start a money-making business at the start.
Usually a number of changes have to be made. Plans do not work
out as their creators thought they would. They may have to be
changed a little, broadened it may be, here and there, and as you
broaden your business you broaden your power to achieve. You gain
an intense and sustained desire to make your business a success.
When you start a business you may have but a vague notion of the
way you will conduct it. You must fill in the details as you go
along. You must concentrate on these details. As you straighten
out one after another, others will require attention. In this way
you cover the field of "the first endeavor" and new opportunities
open up for you.
When you realize one desire, another comes. But if you do not
fulfill the first desire, you will not the second. The person
that does not carry his desires into action is only a dreamer.
Desire is a great creative force, if it is pure, intense and
sustained. It is our desires that keep stirring us up to action
and they will strengthen and broaden you if you make them
Every man who achieves success deserves it. When he first started
out he did not understand how to solve the problems that
afterwards presented themselves, but he did each thing as it came
up in the very best way that he could, and this developed his
power of doing bigger things. We become masters of business by
learning to do well whatever we attempt. The man that has a
thorough knowledge of his business can of course direct it much
more easily and skillfully than the man who lacks that knowledge.
The skilled business director can sit in his private office and
still know accurately what is actually being done. He knows what
should be done in any given time and if it is not accomplished he
knows that his employees are not turning out the work that they
should. It is then easy to apply the remedy.
Business success depends on well-concentrated efforts. You must
use every mental force you can master. The more these are used
the more they increase. Therefore the more you accomplish today
the more force you will have at your disposal with which to solve
your problems tomorrow.
If you are working for someone else today and wish to start in a
business for yourself, think over carefully what you would like
to do. Then when you have resolved what you want to do, you will
be drawn towards it. There is a law that opens the way to the
fulfillment of your desires. Of course back of your desire you
must put forward the necessary effort to carry out your purpose;
you must use your power to put your desires into force. Once they
are created and you keep up your determination to have them
fulfilled you both consciously and unconsciously work toward
their materialization. Set your heart on your purpose,
concentrate your thought upon it, direct your efforts with all
your intelligence and in due time you will realize your ambition.
Feel yourself a success, believe you are a success and thus put
yourself in the attitude that demands recognition and the thought
current draws to you what you need to make you a success. Don't
be afraid of big undertakings. Go at them with grit, and pursue
methods that you think will accomplish your purpose. You may not
at first meet with entire success, but aim so high that if you
fall a little short you will still have accomplished much.
What others have done you can do. You may even do what others
have been unable to do. Always keep a strong desire to succeed in
your mind. Be in love with your aim and work, and make them, as
far as possible, square with the rule of the greatest good to the
greatest number and your life cannot be a failure.
The successful business attitude must be cultivated to make the
most out of your life, the attitude of expecting great things
from both yourself and others. It alone will often cause men to
make good; to measure up to the best that is in them.
It is not the spasmodic spurts that count on a long journey, but
the steady efforts. Spurts fatigue and make it hard for you to
Rely on your own opinion. It should be as good as anyone's else.
When once you reach a conclusion abide by it. Let there be no
doubt, or wavering in your judgment. If you are uncertain about
every decision you make, you will be subject to harassing doubts
and fears which will render your judgment of little value. The
man that decides according to what he thinks right and who learns
from every mistake acquires a well balanced mind that gets the
best results. He gains the confidence of others. He is known as
the man that knows what he wants, and not as one that is as
changeable as the weather. The man of today wants to do business
with the man that he can depend upon. Uncertainties in the
business world are meeting with more disfavor. Reliable firms
want to do business with men of known qualities, with men of
firmness, judgment and reliability.
So if you wish to start in business for yourself your greatest
asset, with the single exception of a sound physique, is that of
a good reputation.
A successful business is not hard to build if we can concentrate
all our mental forces upon it. It is the man that is unsettled
because he does not know what he wants that goes to the wall. We
hear persons say that business is trying on the nerves, but it is
the unsettling elements of fret and worry and suspense that are
nerve-exhausting and not the business. Executing one's plans may
cause fatigue, enjoyment comes with rest. If there has not been
any unnatural strain, the recuperative powers replace what energy
has been lost.
By attending to each day's work properly you develop the capacity
to do a greater work tomorrow. It is this gradual development
that makes possible the carrying out of big plans. The man that
figures out doing something each hour of the day gets somewhere.
At the end of each day you should be a step nearer your aim. Keep
the idea in mind, that you mean to go forward, that each day must
mark an advance and forward you will go. You do not even have to
know the exact direction so long as you are determined to find
the way. But you must not turn back once you have started.
Even brilliant men's conceptions of the possibilities of their
mental forces are so limited and below their real worth that they
are far more likely to belittle their possibilities than they are
to exaggerate them. You don't want to think that an aim is
impossible because it has never been realized in the past. Every
day someone is doing something that was never done before. We are
pushing ahead faster. Formerly it took decades to build up a big
business, but today it is only but a matter of years, sometimes
Plan each day's activities carefully and you can reach any height
you aim at. If each thing you do is done with concise and
concentrated thought you will be able to turn out an excellent
quality and a large quantity of work. Plan to do so much work
during the day and you will be astonished to see how much more
you will do, than on other days, when you had not decided on any
certain amount. I have demonstrated that the average business
working force could do the same amount of work in six hours that
they now do in eight, without using up any more energy. Never
start to accomplish anything in an indecisive, indefinite,
uncertain way. Tackle everything with a positiveness and an
earnestness that will concentrate your mind and attract the very
best associated thoughts. You will in a short time find that you
will have extra time for planning bigger things.
The natural leader always draws to himself, by the law of mental
attraction, ideas in his chosen subject that have ever been
conceived by others. This is of the greatest importance and help.
If you are properly trained you benefit much by others' thoughts,
and, providing you generate from within yourself something of
value, they will benefit from yours. "We are heirs of all the
ages," but we must know how to use our inheritance.
The confident, pushing, hopeful, determined man influences all
with whom he associates, and inspires the same qualities in them.
You feel that his is a safe example to follow and he rouses the
same force within you that is pushing him onward and upward.
One seldom makes a success of anything that he goes at in a
listless, spiritless way. To build up a business you must see it
expanding in your mind before it actually takes tangible shape.
Every great task that has ever been accomplished has first been
merely a vision in the mind of its creator. Detail after detail
has had to be worked out in his mind from his first faint idea of
the enterprise. Finally a clear idea was formed and then the
accomplishment, which was only the material result of the mental
The up-to-date business man is not content to build only for the
present, but is planning ahead. If he does not he will fall
behind his competitor, who is. What we are actually doing today
was carefully thought out and planned by others in the past. All
progressive businesses are conducted this way. That is why the
young business man of today is likely to accomplish more in a few
years than his father did in all his life. There is no reason why
your work or business should fag you out. When it does there is
something wrong. You are attracting forces and influence that you
should not, because you are not in harmony with what you are
doing. There is nothing so tiring as to try to do the work for
which we are unfitted, both by temperament and training.
Each one should be engaged in a business that he loves; be should
be furthering movements with which he is in sympathy. He will
then only do his best work and take intense pleasure in his
business. In this way, while constantly growing and developing
his powers, he is at the same time rendering through his work,
genuine and devoted service to humanity.
Business success is not the result of chance, but of scientific
ideas and plans carried out by an aggressive and progressive
management. Use your mental forces so that they will grow and
develop. Remember that everything you do is the result of mental
action, therefore you can completely control your every action.
Nothing is impossible for you. Don't be afraid to tackle a
difficult proposition. Your success will depend upon the use you
make of your mind. This is capable of wonderful development. See
that you make full use of it, and not only develop yourself but
your associates. Try to broaden the visions of those with whom
you come in contact and you will broaden your own outlook of
Are You Afraid of Responsibilities? In order for the individual
soul to develop, you must have responsibilities. You must
manifest the omnipotence of the law of supply. The whole world is
your legitimate sphere of activity. How much of a conqueror are
you? What have you done? Are you afraid of responsibility, or are
you ever dodging, flinching, or side stepping it. If you are, you
are not a Real Man. Your higher self never winces, so be a man
and allow the powers of the higher self to manifest and you will
find you have plenty of strength and you will feel better when
you are tackling difficult propositions.
LESSON XI. CONCENTRATE ON COURAGE
Courage is the backbone of man. The man with courage has
persistence. He states what he believes and puts it into
execution. The courageous man has confidence. He draws to himself
all the moral qualities and mental forces which go to make up a
strong man. Whereas, the man without courage draws to himself all
the qualities of a weak man, vacillation, doubt, hesitancy, and
unsteadiness of purpose. You can therefore see the value of
concentration on courage. It is a most vital element of success.
The lack of courage creates financial, as well as mental and
moral difficulties. When a new problem comes, instead of looking
upon it as something to be achieved, the man or woman without
courage looks for reasons why it cannot be done and failure is
naturally the almost inevitable result. This is a subject well
worthy of your study. Look upon everything within your power as a
possibility instead of as merely a probability and you will
accomplish a great deal more, because by considering a thing as
impossible, you immediately draw to yourself all the elements
that contribute to failure. Lack of courage destroys your
confidence in yourself. It destroys that forceful, resolute
attitude so important to success.
The man without courage unconsciously draws to himself all that
is contemptible, weakening, demoralizing and destructive. He then
blames his luck when he does not secure the things he weakly
desires. We must first have the courage to strongly desire
something. A desire to be fulfilled must be backed by the
strength of all our mental forces. Such a desire has enough
commanding force to change all unfavorable conditions. The man
with courage commands, whether be is on the battlefield or in
What is courage? It is the Will To Do. It takes no more energy to
be courageous than to be cowardly. It is a matter of the right
training in the right way. Courage concentrates the mental forces
on the task at hand. It then directs them thoughtfully, steadily,
deliberately, while attracting all the forces of success, toward
the desired end. Cowardice on the other hand, dissipates both our
mental and moral forces, thereby inviting failure.
As we are creatures of habits, we should avoid persons that lack
courage. They are easy to discover because of their habits of
fear in attacking new problems. The man with courage is never
Start out today with the idea that there is no reason why you
should not be courageous. If any fear-thoughts come to you cast
them off as you would the deadly viper. Form the habit of never
thinking of anything unfavorable to yourself or anyone else. In
dealing with difficulties, new or old, hold ever the thought, "I
am courageous." Whenever a doubt crosses the threshold of your
mind, banish it. Remember, you as master of your mind control its
every thought, and here is a good one to often affirm, "I have
courage because I desire it; because I need it; because I use it
and because I refuse to become such a weakling as cowardice
There is no justification for the loss of courage. The evils by
which you will almost certainly be overwhelmed without it are far
greater than those which courage will help you to meet and
overcome. Right, then, must be the moralist who says that the
only thing to fear is fear.
Never let another's opinion affect you; he cannot tell what you
are able to do; he does not know what you can do with your
forces. The truth is you do not know yourself until you put
yourself to the test. Therefore, how can someone else know? Never
let anyone else put a valuation on you.
Almost all wonderful achievements have been accomplished after it
had been "thoroughly" demonstrated that they were
impossibilities. Once we understand the law, all things are
possible. If they were impossibilities we could not conceive
Just the moment you allow someone to influence you against what
you think is right, you lose that confidence in yourself that
inspires courage and carries with it all the forces which courage
creates. Just the moment you begin to swerve in your plan you
begin to carry out another's thought and not your own. You become
the directed and not the director. You forsake the courage and
resolution of your own mind, and you therefore lack the very
forces that you need to sustain and carry out your work. Instead
of being self-reliant you become timid and this invites failure.
When you permit yourself to be influenced from your plan by
another, you are unable to judge as you should, because you have
allowed another's influence to deprive you of your courage and
determination without absorbing any of his in return so you are
in much the same predicament, as you would be in if you turned
over all your worldly possessions to another without getting
Concentrate on just the opposite of fear, want, poverty,
sickness, etc. Never doubt your own ability. You have plenty, if
you will just use it. A great many men are failures because they
doubt their own capacity. Instead of building up strong mental
forces which would be of the greatest use to them their fear
thoughts tear them down. Fear paralyzes energy. It keeps us from
attracting the forces that go to make up success. Fear is the
worst enemy we have.
There are few people that really know that they can accomplish
much. They desire the full extent of their powers, but alas, it
is only occasionally that you find a man that is aware of the
great possibilities within him. When you believe with all your
mind and heart and soul that you can do something, you thereby
develop the courage to steadily and confidently live up to that
belief. You have now gone a long way towards accomplishing it.
The chances are that there will be obstacles, big and little, in
your way, but resolute courage will overcome them and nothing
else will. Strong courage eliminates the injurious and opposing
forces by summoning their masters, the yet stronger forces that
will serve you.
Courage is yours for the asking. All you have to do is to believe
in it, claim it and use it. To succeed in business believe that
it will be successful, assert that it is successful, and work
like a beaver to make it so. Difficulties soon melt away before
the courageous. One man of courage can fire with his spirit a
whole army of men, whether it be military or industrial, because
courage, like cowardice, is contagious.
The man of courage overcomes the trials and temptations of life;
he commands success; he renders sound judgment; he develops
personal influence and a forceful character and often becomes the
mentor of the community which he serves.
How to Overcome Depression and Melancholia. Both of the former
are harmful and make you unhappy. These are states that can be
quickly overcome through concentrating more closely on the higher
self, for when you do you cut off the connection with the harmful
force currents. You can also drive away moods by simply choosing
and fully concentrating on an agreeable subject. Through will
power and thought control we can accomplish anything we want to
do. There is wonderful inherent power within us all, and there is
never any sufficient cause for fear, except ignorance.
Every evil is but the product of ignorance, and everyone that
possesses the power to think has the power to overcome ignorance
and evil. The pain that we suffer from doing evil are but the
lessons of experience, and the object of the pain is to make us
realize our ignorance. When we become depressed It is evidence
that our thought faculties are combining improperly and thereby
attracting the wrong force-currents.
All that it is necessary to do is to exercise the will and
concentrate upon happy subjects. I will only think of subjects
worthy of my higher self and its powers.
LESSON XII. CONCENTRATE ON WEALTH
It was never intended that man should be poor. When wealth is
obtained under the proper conditions it broadens the life.
Everything has its value. Everything has a good use and a bad
use. The forces of mind like wealth can be directed either for
good or evil. A little rest will re-create forces. Too much rest
degenerates into laziness, and brainless, dreamy longings.
If you acquire wealth unjustly from others, you are misusing your
forces; but if your wealth comes through the right sources you
will be blessed. Through wealth we can do things to uplift
ourselves and humanity.
Wealth is many persons' goal. It therefore stimulates their
endeavor. They long for it in order to dress and live in such a
way as to attract friends. Without friends they would not be so
particular of their surroundings. The fact is the more attractive
we make ourselves and our surroundings the more inspiring are
their influences. It is not conducive to proper thought to be
surrounded by conditions that are uncongenial and unpleasant.
So the first step toward acquiring wealth is to surround yourself
with helpful influences; to claim for yourself an environment of
culture, place yourself in it and be molded by its influences.
Most great men of all ages have been comparatively rich. They
have made or inherited money. Without money they could not have
accomplished what they did. The man engaged in physical drudgery
is not likely to have the same high ideals as the man that can
command comparative leisure.
Wealth is usually the fruit of achievement. It is not, however,
altogether the result of being industrious. Thousands of persons
work hard who never grow wealthy. Others with much less effort
acquire wealth. Seeing possibilities is another step toward
acquiring wealth. A man may be as industrious as he can possibly
be, but if he does not use his mental forces he will be a
laborer, to be directed by the man that uses to good advantage
his mental forces.
No one can become wealthy in an ordinary lifetime, by mere
savings from earnings. Many scrimp and economize all their lives;
but by so doing waste all their vitality and energy. For example,
I know a man that used to walk to work. It took him an hour to go
and an hour to return. He could have taken a car and gone in
twenty minutes. He saved ten cents a day but wasted an hour and a
half. It was not a very profitable investment unless the time
spent in physical exercise yielded him large returns in the way
The same amount of time spent in concentrated effort to overcome
his unfavorable business environment might have firmly planted
his feet in the path of prosperity.
One of the big mistakes made by many persons of the present
generation is that they associate with those who fail to call out
or develop the best that is in them. When the social side of life
is developed too exclusively, as it often is, and recreation or
entertainment becomes the leading motive of a person's life, he
acquires habits of extravagance instead of economy; habits of
wasting his resources, physical, mental, moral and spiritual,
instead of conserving them. He is, in consequence, lacking in
proper motivation, his God-given powers and forces are
undeveloped and he inevitably brings poor judgment to bear upon
all the higher relationships of life, while, as to his financial
fortunes, he is ever the leaner; often a parasite, and always, if
opportunity affords, as heavy a consumer as he is a poor
It seems a part of the tragedy of life that these persons have to
be taught such painful lessons before they can understand the
forces and laws that regulate life. Few profit by the mistakes of
others. They must experience them for themselves and then apply
the knowledge so gained in reconstructing their lives.
Any man that has ever amounted to anything has never done a great
deal of detail work for long periods at any given time. He needs
his time to reflect. He does not do his duties today in the same
way as yesterday, but as the result of deliberate and
concentrated effort, constantly tries to improve his methods.
The other day I attended a lecture on Prosperity. I knew the
lecturer had been practically broke for ten years. I wanted to
hear what he had to say. He spoke very well. He no doubt
benefited some of his hearers, but he had not profited by his own
teachings. I introduced myself and asked him if he believed in
his maxims. He said he did. I asked him if they had made him
prosperous. He said not exactly. I asked him why. He answered
that he thought he was fated not to experience prosperity.
In half an hour I showed that man why poverty had always been his
companion. He had dressed poorly. He held his lectures in poor
surroundings. By his actions and beliefs he attracted poverty. He
did not realize that his thoughts and his surroundings exercised
an unfavorable influence. I said: "Thoughts are moving forces;
great powers. Thoughts of wealth attract wealth. Therefore, if
you desire wealth you must attract the forces that will help you
to secure it. Your thoughts attract a similar kind of thoughts.
If you hold thoughts of poverty you attract poverty. If you make
up your mind you are going to be wealthy, you will instil this
thought into all your mental forces, and you will at the same
time use every external condition to help you."
Many persons are of the opinion that if you have money it is easy
to make more money. But this is not necessarily true. Ninety per
cent of the men that start in business fail. Money will not
enable one to accumulate much more, unless he is trained to seek
and use good opportunities for its investment. If he inherits
money the chances are that he will lose it. While, if he has made
it, he not only knows its value, but has developed the power to
use it as well as to make more if he loses it.
Business success today depends on foresight, good judgment, grit,
firm resolution and settled purpose. But never forget that
thought is as real a force as electricity. Let your thoughts be
such, that you will send out as good as you receive; if you do
not, you are not enriching others, and therefore deserve not to
The man that tries to get all he can from others for nothing
becomes so selfish and mean that he does not even enjoy his
acquisitions. We see examples of this every day. What we take
from others, will in turn, be taken from us. All obligations have
to be met fairly and squarely. We cannot reach perfection until
we discharge every obligation of our lives. We all realize this,
so why not willingly give a fair exchange for all that we
Again I repeat that the first as well as the last step in
acquiring wealth is to surround yourself with good
influences--good thought, good health, good home and business
environment and successful business associates. Cultivate, by
every legitimate means, the acquaintance of men of big caliber.
Bring your thought vibrations in regard to business into harmony
with theirs. This will make your society not only agreeable, but
sought after, and, when you have formed intimate friendships with
clean, reputable men of wealth, entrust to them, for investment,
your surplus earnings, however small, until you have developed
the initiative and business acumen to successfully manage your
own investments. By this time you will, through such
associations, have found your place in life which, if you have
rightly concentrated upon and used your opportunities, will not
be among men of small parts. With a competence secured, you will
take pleasure in using a part of it in making the road you
traveled in reaching your position easier for those who follow
There is somewhere in every brain the energy that will get you
out of that rut and put you far up on the mountain of success if
you can only use the energy.
You know that gasoline in the engine of an automobile doesn't
move the car until the spark comes to explode the gasoline.
So it is with the mind of man. We are not speaking now of men of
great genius, but of average, able citizens.
Each one of them has in his brain the capacity to climb over the
word impossible and get into the successful country beyond.
And hope, self-confidence and the determination to do something
supply the spark that makes the energy work.
LESSON XIII. YOU CAN CONCENTRATE, BUT WILL YOU?
All have the ability to concentrate, but will you? You can, but
whether you will or not depends on you. It is one thing to be
able to do something, and another thing to do it. There is far
more ability not used than is used. Why do not more men of
ability make something of themselves? There are comparatively few
successful men but many ambitious ones. Why do not more get
along? Cases may differ, but the fault is usually their own. They
have had chances, perhaps better ones than some others that have
What would you like to do, that you are not doing? If you think
you should be "getting on" better, why don't you? Study yourself
carefully. Learn your shortcomings. Sometimes only a mere trifle
keeps one from branching out and becoming a success. Discover why
you have not been making good--the cause of your failure. Have
you been expecting someone to lead you, or to make a way for you?
If you have, concentrate on a new line of thought.
There are two things absolutely necessary for success--energy and
the will to succeed. Nothing can take the place of either of
these. Most of us will not have an easy path to follow so don't
expect to find one. The hard knocks develop our courage and moral
stamina. The persons that live in an indolent and slipshod way
never have any. They have never faced conditions and therefore
don't know how. The world is no better for their living.
We must make favorable conditions and not expect them to shape
themselves. It is not the man that says, "It can't be done," but
the man that goes ahead in spite of adverse advice, and shows
that "it can be done" that "gets there" today. "The Lord helps
those that help themselves," is a true saying. We climb the road
to success by overcoming obstacles. Stumbling blocks are but
stepping stones for the man that says, "I can and I Will." When
we see cripples, the deaf and dumb, the blind and those with
other handicaps amounting to something in the world, the
able-bodied man should feel ashamed of himself if he does not
There is nothing that can resist the force of perseverance. The
way ahead of all of us is not clear sailing, but all hard
passages can be bridged, if you just think they can and
concentrate on how to do it. But if you think the obstacles are
unsurmountable, you will not of course try, and even if you do,
it will be in only a half-hearted way--a way that accomplishes
Many men will not begin an undertaking unless they feel sure they
will succeed in it. What a mistake! This would be right, if we
were sure of what we could and could not do. But who knows? There
may be an obstruction there now that might not be there next
week. There may not be an obstruction there now that will be
there next week. The trouble with most persons is that just as
soon as they see their way blocked they lose courage. They forget
that usually there is a way around the difficulty. It's up to you
to find it. If you tackle something with little effort, when the
conditions call for a big effort, you will of course not win.
Tackle everything with a feeling that you will utilize all the
power within you to make it a success. This is the kind of
concentrated effort that succeeds.
Most people are beaten before they start. They think they are
going to encounter obstacles, and they look for them instead of
for means to overcome them. The result is that they increase
their obstacles instead of diminishing them. Have you ever
undertaken something that you thought would be hard, but
afterwards found it to be easy? That is the way a great many
times. The things that look difficult in advance turn out to be
easy of conquest when once encountered. So start out on your
journey with the idea that the road is going to be clear for you,
and that if it is not you will clear the way. All men that have
amounted to anything have cleared their way and they did not have
the assistance that you will have today.
The one great keynote of success is to do whatever you have
decided on. Don't be turned from your path, but resolve that you
are going to accomplish what you set out to do. Don't be
frightened at a few rebuffs, for they cannot stop the man that is
determined--the man that knows in his heart that success is only
bought by tremendous resolution, by concentrated and
"He who has a firm will," says Goethe, "molds the world to
"People do not lack strength," says Victor Hugo; "they lack
It is not so much skill that wins victories as it is activity and
great determination There is no such thing as failure for the man
that does his best. No matter what you may be working at, at the
present time, don't let this make you lose courage. The tides are
continually changing, and tomorrow or some other day they will
turn to your advantage if you are a willing and are an ambitious
worker. There is nothing that develops you and increases your
courage like work. If it were not for work how monotonous life
would at last become!
So I say to the man that wants to advance, "Don't look upon your
present position as your permanent one. Keep your eyes open, and
add those qualities to your makeup that will assist you when your
opportunity comes. Be ever alert and on the watch for
opportunities. Remember, we attract what we set our minds on. If
we look for opportunities, we find them.
If you are the man you should be, some one is looking for you to
fill a responsible position. So when he finds you, don't let your
attention wander. Give it all to him. Show that you can
concentrate your powers, that you have the makeup of a real man.
Show no signs of fear, uncertainty or doubt. The man that is sure
of himself is bound to get to the front. No circumstances can
LESSON XIV. THE ART OF CONCENTRATING BY MEANS OF PRACTICAL
Select some thought, and see how long you can hold your mind on
it. It is well to have a clock at first and keep track of the
time. If you decide to think about health, you can get a great
deal of good from your thinking besides developing concentration.
Think of health as being the greatest blessing there is, in the
world. Don't let any other thought drift in. Just the moment one
starts to obtrude, make it get out.
Make it a daily habit of concentrating on this thought for, say,
ten minutes. Practice until you can hold it to the exclusion of
everything else. You will find it of the greatest value to
centralize your thoughts on health. Regardless of your present
condition, see yourself as you would like to be and be blind to
everything else. You will find it hard at first to forget your
ailments, if you have any, but after a short while you can shut
out these negative thoughts and see yourself as you want to be.
Each time you concentrate you form a more perfect image of
health, and, as you come into its realization, you become
healthy, strong and wholesome.
I want to impress upon your mind that the habit of forming mental
images is of the greatest value. It has always been used by
successful men of all ages, but few realize its full importance.
Do you know that you are continually acting according to the
images you form? If you allow yourself to mould negative images
you unconsciously build a negative disposition. You will think of
poverty, weakness, disease, fear, etc. Just as surely as you
think of these will your objective life express itself in a like
way. Just what we think, we will manifest in the external world.
In deep concentration you become linked with the great creative
spirit of the universe, and the creative energy then flows
through you, vitalizing your creations into form. In deep
concentration your mind becomes attuned with the infinite and
registers the cosmic intelligence and receives its messages. You
become so full of the cosmic energy that you are literally
flooded with divine power. This is a most desired state. It is
then we realize the advantages of being connected with the
supra-consciousness. The supra-consciousness registers the higher
cosmic vibrations. It is often referred to as the wireless
station, the message recorded coming from the universal mind.
There are very few that reach this stage of concentration. Very
few even know that it is possible. They think concentration means
limitation to one subject, but this deeper concentration that
brings us into harmony with the Infinite is that which produces
and maintains health.
When you have once come in contact with your supra-consciousness
you become the controller of your human thoughts. That which
comes to you is higher than human thoughts. It is often spoken of
as Cosmic Consciousness. Once it is experienced it is never
forgotten. Naturally it requires a good deal of training to reach
this state, but once you do, it becomes easier each time to do,
and in the course of time you can become possessed of power which
was unknown to you before. You are able to direct the expression
of almost Infinite Power while in this deeper state of
Exercises In Concentration. The rays of the sun, when focused
upon an object by means of a sun glass, produce a heat many times
greater than the scattered rays of the same source of light and
heat. This is true of attention. Scatter it and you get but
ordinary results. But center it upon one thing and you secure
much better results. When you focus your attention upon an object
your every action, voluntary and involuntary, is in the direction
of attaining that object. If you will focus your energies upon a
thing to the exclusion of everything else, you generate the force
that can bring you what you want.
When you focus your thought, you increase its strength. The
exercises that follow are tedious and monotonous, but useful. If
you will persist in them you will find they are very valuable, as
they increase your powers of concentration.
Before proceeding with the exercises I will answer a question
that just comes to me. This person says after he works all day he
is too tired to practice any exercise. But this is not true. We
will say he comes home all tired out, eats his supper and sits
down to rest. If his work has been mental, the thought which has
been occupying his mind returns to him and this prevents him from
securing the rest he needs.
It is an admitted fact that certain thoughts call into operation
a certain set of brain cells; the other cells, of course, are not
busy at that time and are rested. Now if you take up something
that is just different from what you have been doing during the
day, you will use the cells that have not done anything and give
those that have had work to do a rest. So you should regulate the
evenings that you have and call forth an entirely different line
of thought so as not to use the cells which you have tired out
during the day. If you will center your attention on a new
thought, you relieve the old cells from vibrating with excitement
and they get their needed rest. The other cells that have been
idle all day want to work, and you will find you can enjoy your
evenings while securing needed rest.
When once you have learned to master your thoughts, you will be
able to change them just as easily as you change your clothes.
Remember, the real requisite of centering is to be able to shut
out outside thoughts--anything foreign to the subject. Now, in
order to control your intention first gain control over the body.
This must be brought under direct control of the mind; the mind
under the control of the will. Your will is strong enough to do
anything you wish, but you must realize that it is. The mind can
be greatly strengthened by being brought under the direct
influence of the will. When the mind is properly strengthened by
the impulse of the will it becomes a more powerful transmitter of
thought, because it has more force.
The Best Time to Concentrate Is after reading something that is
inspiring, as you are then mentally and spiritually exalted in
the desired realm. Then is the time you are ready for deep
concentration. If you are in your room first see that your
windows are up and the air is good. Lie down flat on your bed
without a pillow. See that every muscle is relaxed. Now breathe
slowly, filling the lungs comfortably full of fresh air; hold
this as long as you can without straining yourself; then exhale
slowly. Exhale in an easy, rhythmic way. Breathe this way for
five minutes, letting the Divine Breath flow through you, which
will cleanse and rejuvenate every cell of brain and body.
You are then ready to proceed. Now think how quiet and relaxed
you are. You can become enthusiastic over your condition. Just
think of yourself as getting ready to receive knowledge that is
far greater than you have ever received before. Now relax and let
the spirit work in and through you and assist you to accomplish
what you wish.
Don't let any doubts or fears enter. Just feel that what you wish
is going to manifest. Just feel it already has, in reality it
has, for just the minute you wish a thing to be done it manifests
in the thought world. Whenever you concentrate just believe it is
a success. Keep up this feeling and allow nothing to interfere
and you will soon find you have become the master of
concentration. You will find that this practice will be of
wonderful value to you, and that rapidly you will be learning to
accomplish anything that you undertake.
It will be necessary to first train the body to obey the commands
of the mind. I want you to gain control of your muscular
movements. The following exercise is especially good in assisting
you to acquire perfect control of the muscles.
Sit in a comfortable chair and see how still you can keep. This
is not as easy as it seems. You will have to center your
attention on sitting still. Watch and see that you are not making
any involuntary muscular movements. By a little practice you will
find you are able to sit still without a movement of the muscles
for fifteen minutes. At first I advise sitting in a relaxed
position for five minutes. After you are able to keep perfectly
still, increase the time to ten minutes and then to fifteen. This
is as long as it is necessary. But never strain yourself to keep
still. You must be relaxed completely. You will find this habit
of relaxing is very good.
Sit in a chair with your head up and your chin out, shoulders
back. Raise your right arm until it is on the level with your
shoulder, pointing to your right. Look around, with head only,
and fix your gaze on your fingers, and keep the arm perfectly
still for one minute. Do the same exercise with left arm. When
you are able to keep the arm perfectly steady, increase the time
until you are able to do this five minutes with each arm. Turn
the palm of the hand downward when it is outstretched, as this is
the easiest position. If you will keep your eyes fixed on the
tips of the fingers you will be able to tell if you are keeping
your arm perfectly still.
Fill a small glass full of water, and grasp it by the fingers;
put the arm directly in front of you. Now fix the eyes upon the
glass and try to keep the arm so steady that no movement will be
noticeable. Do this first for one moment and then increase it to
five. Do the exercise with first one arm and then the other.
Watch yourself during the day and see that your muscles do not
become tense or strained. See how easy and relaxed you can keep
yourself. See how poised you can be at all times. Cultivate a
self-poised manner, instead of a nervous, strained appearance.
This mental feeling will improve your carriage and demeanor. Stop
all useless gestures and movements of the body. These mean that
you have not proper control over your body. After you have
acquired this control, notice how "ill-at-ease" people are that
have not gained this control. I have just been sizing up a
salesman that has just left me. Part of his body kept moving all
the time. I just felt like saying to him, "Do you know how much
better appearance you would make if you would just learn to speak
with your voice instead of trying to express what you say with
your whole body?" Just watch those that interview you and see how
they lack poise.
Get rid of any habit you have of twitching or jerking any part of
your body. You will find you make many involuntary movements. You
can quickly stop any of these by merely centering your attention
on the thought, "I will not."
If you are in the habit of letting noises upset you, just
exercise control; when the door slams, or something falls, etc.,
just think of these as exercises in self-control. You will find
many exercises like this in your daily routine.
The purpose of the above exercises is to gain control over the
involuntary muscular movement, making your actions entirely
voluntary. The following exercises are arranged to bring your
voluntary muscles under the control of the will, so that your
mental forces may control your muscular movements.
Move your chair up to a table, placing your hands upon it,
clenching the fists, keeping the back of the hand on the table,
the thumb doubled over the fingers. Now fix your gaze upon the
fist for a while, then gradually extend the thumb, keeping your
whole attention fixed upon the act, just as if it was a matter of
great importance. Then gradually extend your first finger, then
your second and so on until you open the rest. Then reverse the
process, closing first the last one opened and then the rest, and
finally you will have the fist again in the original position
with the thumb closed over the finger. Do this exercise with the
left hand. Keep up this exercise first with one hand and then the
other until you have done it five times with each hand. In a few
days you can increase it to ten times.
The chances are that the above exercises will at first make you
"tired," but it is important for you to practice these monotonous
exercises so you can train your attention. It also gives you
control over your muscular movement. The attention, of course,
must be kept closely on each movement of the hand; if it is not,
you of course lose the value of the exercise.
Put the right hand on knee, both fingers and thumb closed, except
the first finger, which points out in front of you. Then move the
finger slowly from side to side, keeping the attention fixed upon
the end of the finger. You can make up a variety of exercises
like these. It is good training to plan out different ones. The
main point you should keep in mind is that the exercise should be
simple and that the attention should be firmly fixed upon the
moving part of the body. You will find your attention will not
want to be controlled and will try to drift to something more
interesting. This is just where these exercises are of value, and
you must control your attention and see it is held in the right
place and does not wander away.
You may think these exercises very simple and of no value, but I
promise you in a short time you will notice that you have a much
better control over your muscular movements, carriage and
demeanor, and you will find that you have greatly improved your
power of attention, and can center your thoughts on what you do,
which of course will be very valuable.
No matter what you may be doing, imagine that it is your chief
object in life. Imagine you are not interested in anything else
in the world but what you are doing. Do not let your attention
get away from the work you are at. Your attention will no doubt
be rebellious, but control it and do not let it control you. When
once you conquer the rebellious attention you have achieved a
greater victory than you can realize at the time. Many times
afterwards you will be thankful you have learned to concentrate
your closest attention upon the object at hand.
Let no day go by without practicing concentrating on some
familiar object that is uninteresting. Never choose an
interesting object, as it requires less attention. The less
interesting it is the better exercise will it be. After a little
practice you will find you can center your attention on
uninteresting subjects at will.
The person that can concentrate can gain full control over his
body and mind and be the master of his inclinations; not their
slave. When you can control yourself you can control others. You
can develop a Will that will make you a giant compared with the
man that lacks Will Power. Try out your Will Power in different
ways until you have it under such control that just as soon as
you decide to do a thing you go ahead and do it. Never be
satisfied with the "I did fairly well" spirit, but put forward
your best efforts. Be satisfied with nothing else. When you have
gained this you are the man you were intended to be.
Concentration Increases the Sense of Smell. When you take a walk,
or drive in the country, or pass a flower garden, concentrate on
the odor of flowers and plants. See how many different kinds you
can detect. Then choose one particular kind and try to sense only
this. You will find that this strongly intensifies the sense of
smell. This differentiation requires, however, a peculiarly
attentive attitude. When sense of smell is being developed, you
should not only shut out from the mind every thought but that of
odor, but you should also shut out cognizance of every odor save
that upon which your mind, for the time, is concentrated.
You call find plenty of opportunity for exercises for developing
the sense of smell. When you are out in the air, be on the alert
for the different odors. You will find the air laden with all
kinds, but let your concentration upon the one selected be such
that a scent of its fragrance in after years will vividly recall
the circumstances of this exercise.
The object of these exercises is to develop concentrated
attention, and you will find that you can, through their
practice, control your mind and direct your thoughts just the
same as you can your arm.
Concentration on the Within. Lie down and thoroughly relax your
muscles. Concentrate on the beating of your heart. Do not pay any
attention to anything else. Think how this great organ is pumping
the blood to every part of the body; try to actually picture the
blood leaving the great reservoir and going in one stream right
down to the toes. Picture another going down the arms to the tips
of the fingers. After a little practice you can actually feel the
blood passing through your system.
If, at any time, you feel weak in any part of the body, will that
an extra supply of blood shall go there. For instance, if your
eyes feel tired, picture the blood coming from the heart, passing
up through the head and out to the eyes. You can wonderfully
increase your strength by this exercise. Men have been able to
gain such control over the heart that they have actually stopped
it from beating for five minutes. This, however, is not without
danger, and is not to be practiced by the novice.
I have found the following a very helpful exercise to take just
before going to bed and on rising in the morning: Say to
yourself, "Every cell in my body thrills with life; every part of
my body is strong and healthy." I have known a number of people
to greatly improve their health in this way. You become what you
picture yourself to be. If your mind thinks of sickness in
connection with self you will be sick. If you imagine yourself in
strong, vigorous health, the image will be realized. You will be
Concentrating on Sleep. What is known as the water method is,
although very simple, very effective in inducing sleep.
Put a full glass of clear water on a table in your sleeping room.
Sit in a chair beside the table and gaze into the glass of water
and think how calm it is. Then picture yourself , getting into
just as calm a state. In a short time you will find the nerves
becoming quiet and you will be able to go to sleep. Sometimes it
is good to picture yourself becoming drowsy to induce sleep, and,
again, the most persistent insomnia has been overcome by one
thinking of himself as some inanimate object--for instance, a
hollow log in the depths of the cool, quiet forest.
Those who are troubled with insomnia will find these sleep
exercises that quiet the nerves very effective. Just keep the
idea in your mind that there is no difficulty in going to sleep;
banish all fear of insomnia. Practice these exercises and you
By this time you should have awakened to the possibilities of
concentration and have become aware of the important part it
plays in your life.
Concentration Will Save Energy and Appearance. Watch yourself and
see if you are not in the habit of moving your hands, thumping
something with your fingers or twirling your mustache. Some have
the habit of keeping their feet going, as, for instance, tapping
them on the floor. Practice standing before a mirror and see if
you are in the habit of frowning or causing wrinkles to appear in
the forehead. Watch others and see how they needlessly twist
their faces in talking. Any movement of the face that causes the
skin to wrinkle will eventually cause a permanent wrinkle. As the
face is like a piece of silk, you can make a fold in it a number
of times and it will straighten out of itself, but, if you
continue to make a fold in it, it will in time be impossible to
By Concentration You Can Stop the Worry Habit. If you are in the
habit of worrying over the merest trifles, just concentrate on
this a few minutes and see bow needless it is; if you are also in
the habit of becoming irritable or nervous at the least little
thing, check yourself instantly when you feel yourself becoming
so; start to breathe deeply; say, "I will not be so weak; I am
master of myself," and you will quickly overcome your condition.
By Concentration You Can Control Your Temper. If you are one of
those that flare up at the slightest "provocation" and never try
to control yourself, just think this over a minute. Does it do
you any good? Do you gain anything by it? Doesn't it put you out
of poise for some time? Don't you know that this grows on you and
will eventually make you despised by all that have any dealings
with you? Everyone makes mistakes and, instead of becoming angry
at their perpetrators, just say to them, "Be more careful next
time." This thought will be impressed on them and they will be
more careful. But, if you continually complain about their making
a mistake, the thought of a mistake is impressed on them and they
will be more likely to make mistakes in the future. All lack of
self-control can be conquered if you will but learn to
Many of you that read this may think you are not guilty of either
of these faults, but if you will carefully watch yourself you
will probably find that you are, and, if so, you will be greatly
helped by repeating this affirmation each morning:
"I am going to try today not to make a useless gesture or to
worry over trifles, or become nervous or irritable. I intend to
be calm, and, no difference what may be the circumstances, I will
control myself. Henceforth I resolve to be free from all signs
that show lack of self-control."
At night quickly review your actions during the day and see how
fully you realized your aim. At first you will, of course, have
to plead guilty of violation a few times, but keep on, and you
will soon find that you can live up to your ideal. After you have
once gained self-control, however, don't relinquish it. For some
time it will still be necessary to repeat the affirmation in the
morning and square your conduct with it in the evening. Keep up
the good work until, at last, the habit of self-control is so
firmly fixed that you could not break it even though you tried.
I have had many persons tell me that this affirmation and daily
review made a wonderful difference in their lives. You, too, will
notice the difference if you live up to these instructions.
Practice Talking Before a Glass. Make two marks on your mirror on
a level with your eyes, and think of them as two human eyes
looking into yours. Your eyes will probably blink a little at
first. Do not move your head, but stand erect. Concentrate all
your thoughts on keeping your head perfectly still. Do not let
another thought come into your mind. Then, still keeping the
head, eyes and body still, think that you look like a reliable
man or woman should; like a person that anyone would have
confidence in. Do not let your appearance be such as to justify
the remark, "I don't like his appearance. I don't believe he can
While standing before the mirror practice deep breathing. See
that there is plenty of fresh air in the room, and that you are
literally feasting on it. You will find that, as it permeates
every cell, your timidity will disappear. It has been replaced by
a sense of peace and power.
The one that stands up like a man and has control over the
muscles of his face and eyes always commands attention. In his
conversation, he can better impress those with whom he comes in
contact. He acquires a feeling of calmness and strength that
causes opposition to melt away before it.
Three minutes a day is long enough for the practice of this
Look at the clock before you commence the exercise, and if you
find you can prolong the exercise for more than five minutes do
so. The next day sit in a chair and, without looking at the
picture, concentrate on it and see if you cannot think of
additional details concerning it. The chances are you will be
able to think of many more. It might be well for you to write
down all you thought of the first day, and then add to the list
each new discovery. You will find that this is a very excellent
exercise in concentration.
The Control of Sensations. Think how you would feel if you were
cool; then how you would feel if you were cold; again, how you
would feel if it were freezing. In this state you would be
shivering all over. Now think of just the opposite conditions;
construct such a vivid image of heat that you are able to
experience the sensation of heat even in the coldest atmosphere.
It is possible to train your imagination until you do this, and
it can then be turned to practical account in making undesirable
You can think of many very good exercises like this. For
instance, if you feel yourself getting hungry or thirsty and for
any reason you do not wish to eat, do not think of how hungry or
thirsty you are, but just visualize yourself as finishing a
hearty meal. Again, when you experience pain, do not increase it
by thinking about it, but do something to divert your attention,
and the pain will seem to decrease. If you will start practicing
along this line systematically you will soon gain a wonderful
control over the things that affect your physical comfort.
The Eastern Way of Concentrating. Sit in a chair with a high back
in upright position. Press one finger against the right nostril.
Now take a long, deep breath, drawing the breath in gently as you
count ten; then expel the breath through the right nostril as you
count ten. Repeat this exercise with the opposite nostril. This
exercise should be done at least twenty times at each sitting.
Controlling Desires. Desire, which is one of the hardest forces
to control, will furnish you with excellent exercises in
concentration. It seems natural to want to tell others what you
know; but, by learning to control these desires, you can
wonderfully strengthen your powers of concentration. Remember,
you have all you can do to attend to your own business. Do not
waste your time in thinking of others or in gossiping about them.
If, from your own observation, you learn something about another
person that is detrimental, keep it to yourself. Your opinion may
afterwards turn out to be wrong anyway, but whether right or
wrong, you have strengthened your will by controlling your desire
to communicate your views.
If you hear good news resist the desire to tell it to the first
person you meet and you will be benefited thereby. It will
require the concentration of all your powers of resistance to
prohibit the desire to tell. After you feel that you have
complete control over your desires you can then tell your news.
But you must be able to suppress the desire to communicate the
news until you are fully ready to tell it. Persons that do not
possess this power of control over desires are apt to tell things
that they should not, thereby often involving both themselves and
others in needless trouble.
If you are in the habit of getting excited when you hear
unpleasant news, just control yourself and receive it without any
exclamation of surprise. Say to yourself, "Nothing is going to
cause me to lose my self-control. You will find from experience
that this self-control will be worth much to you in business. You
will be looked upon as a cool-headed business man, and this in
time becomes a valuable business asset. Of course, circumstances
alter cases. At times it is necessary to become enthused. But be
ever on the lookout for opportunities for the practice of
self-control. "He that ruleth his spirit is greater than he that
ruleth a city."
When You Read. No one can think without first concentrating his
thoughts on the subject in hand. Every man and woman should train
himself to think clearly. An excellent exercise is to read some
short story and then write just an abridged statement. Read an
article in a newspaper, and see in how few words you can express
it. Reading an article to get only the essentials requires the
closest concentration. If you are unable to write out what you
read, you will know you are weak in concentration. Instead of
writing it out you can express it orally if you wish. Go to your
room and deliver it as if you were talking to some one. You will
find exercises like this of the greatest value in developing
concentration and learning to think.
After you have practiced a number of these simple exercises read
a book for twenty minutes and then write down what you have read.
The chances are that at first you will not remember very many
details, but with a little practice you will be able to write a
very good account of what you have read. The closer the
concentration the more accurate the account will be.
It is a good idea when time is limited to read only a short
sentence and then try to write it down word for word. When you
are able to do this, read two or more sentences and treat
similarly. The practice will produce very good results if you
keep it up until the habit is fixed.
If you will just utilize your spare time in practicing exercises
like those suggested you can gain wonderful powers of
concentration. You will find that in order to remember every word
in a sentence you must keep out every thought but that which you
wish to remember, and this power of inhibition alone will more
than compensate for the trouble of the exercise. Of course,
success in all of the above depends largely upon cultivating,
through the closest concentration, the power to image or picture
what you read; upon the power, as one writer expresses it, of
letting the mountains of which we hear loom before us and the
rivers of which we read roll at our feet.
Concentration Overcomes Bad Habits. If you have a habit that you
want to get rid of, shut your eyes and imagine that your real
self is standing before you. Now try the power of affirmation;
say to yourself, "You are not a weakling; you can stop this habit
if you want to. This habit is bad and you want to break it." Just
imagine that you are some one else giving this advice. This is
very valuable practice. You, in time, see yourself as others see
you. The habit loses its power over you and you are free.
If you will just form the mental image of controlling yourself as
another person might, you will take a delight in breaking bad
habits. I have known a number of men to break themselves of
drinking in this way.
Watch Concentration. Sit in a chair and place a clock with a
second hand on the table. Follow the second hand with your eyes
as it goes around. Keep this up for five minutes, thinking of
nothing else but the second hand, This is a very good exercise
when you only have a few minutes to spare, if you are able to
keep every other thought in the stream of consciousness
subordinate to it. As there is little that is particularly
interesting about the second hand, it is hard to do this, but in
the extra effort of will power required to make it successful
lies its value. Always try to keep as still as possible during
In this way you can gain control over nerves and this quieting
effect is very good for them.
Faith Concentration. A belief in the power to concentrate is of
course very important. I purposely did not put this exercise in
the beginning where it naturally belongs because I wanted you to
know that you could learn to concentrate. If you have practiced
the above exercises you have now developed this concentration
power to a considerable extent and therefore you have faith in
the power of concentration, but you can still become a much
stronger believer in it.
We will say that you have some desire or wish you want fulfilled,
or that you need some special advice. You first clearly picture
what is wanted and then you concentrate on getting it. Have
absolute faith that your desires will be realized. Believe that
it will according to your belief be fulfilled. Never, at this
time, attempt to analyze the belief. You don't care anything
about the whys and wherefores. You want to gain the thing you
desire, and if you concentrate on it in the right way you will
A Caution. Never think you will not succeed, but picture what is
wanted as already yours, and yours it surely will be.
Self-Distrust. Do you ever feel distrust in yourself? If You do,
just ask yourself, which self do I mistrust? Then say: my higher
self cannot be affected. Then think of the wonderful powers of
the higher self. There is a way to overcome all difficulties, and
it is a delight for the human soul to do so. Instead of wasting
precious thought-force by dreading or fearing a disagreeable
interview or event, instead devote the time and concentrated
thought in how to make the best of the interview or event and you
will find that it will not be as unpleasant as you thought it
would be. Most of our troubles are but imaginary, and it is the
mental habit of so dreading them that really acts as a magnet in
attracting those that really do come. Your evil circumstances are
created or attracted by your own negative, fears and wrong
thoughts, and are a means of teaching you to triumph over all
evils, by discovering that which is inherent within yourself.
You will find it helpful in overcoming self-distrust, to stop and
think, why you are, concentrating your forces, and by so doing
you become more closely attached to the higher self, which never
LESSON XV. CONCENTRATE SO YOU WILL NOT FORGET
A man forgets because he does not concentrate his mind on his
purpose, especially at the moment he conceives it. We remember
only that which makes a deep impression, hence we must first
deepen our impressions by associating in our minds certain ideas
that are related to them.
We will say a wife gives her husband a letter to mail. He does
not think about it, but automatically puts it in his pocket and
forgets all about it. When the letter was given to him had he
said to himself, "I will mail this letter. The box is at the next
corner and when I pass it I must drop this letter," it would have
enabled him to recall the letter the instant he reached the mail
The same rule holds good in regard to more important things. For
example, if you are instructed to drop in and see Mr. Smith while
out to luncheon today, you will not forget it, if, at the moment
the instruction is given, you say to yourself something similar
to the following:
"When I get to the corner of Blank street, on my way to luncheon,
I shall turn to the right and call on Mr. Smith." In this way the
impression is made, the connection established and the sight of
the associated object recalls the errand.
The important thing to do is to deepen the impression at the very
moment it enters your mind. This is made possible, not only by
concentrating the mind upon the idea itself, but by surrounding
it with all possible association of ideas, so that each one will
reinforce the others.
The mind is governed by laws of association, such as the law that
ideas which enter the mind at the same time emerge at the same
time, one assisting in recalling the others.
The reason why people cannot remember what they want to is that
they have not concentrated their minds sufficiently on their
purpose at the moment when it was formed.
You can train yourself to remember in this way by the
concentration of the attention on your purpose, in accordance
with the laws of association.
When once you form this habit, the attention is easily centered
and the memory easily trained. Then your memory, instead of
failing you at crucial moments, becomes a valuable asset in your
Exercise in Memory Concentration. Select some picture; put it on
a table and then look at it for two minutes. Concentrate your
attention on this picture, observe every detail; then shut your
eyes and see how much you can recall about it. Think of what the
picture represents; whether it is a good subject; whether it
looks natural. Think of objects in foreground, middle ground,
background; of details of color and form. Now open your eyes and
hold yourself rigidly to the correction of each and every
mistake. Close eyes again and notice how much more accurate your
picture is. Practice until your mental image corresponds in every
particular to the original.
Nature is a Wonderful Instructor. But there are very few who
realize that when we get in touch with nature we discover
ourselves. That by listening to her voice, with that curious,
inner sense of ours, we learn the oneness of life and wake up to
our own latent powers.
Few realize that the simple act of listening and concentrating is
our best interior power, for it brings us into close contact with
the highest, just as our other senses bring us into touch with
the coarser side of human nature. The closer we live to nature
the more developed is this sense. "So called" civilization has
over developed our other senses at the expense of this one.
Children unconsciously realize the value of concentration--for
instance: When a Child has a difficult problem to solve, and gets
to some knotty point which he finds himself mentally unable to
do--though he tries his hardest--he will pause and keep quite
still, leaning on his elbow, apparently listening; then you will
see, if you are watching, sudden illumination come and he goes on
happily and accomplishes his task. A child instinctively but
unconsciously knows when he needs help, he must be quiet and
All great people concentrate and owe their success to it. The
doctor thinks over the symptoms of his patient, waits, listens
for the inspiration, though quite unconscious, perhaps, of doing
so. The one who diagnoses in this way seldom makes mistakes. An
author thinks his plot, holds it in his mind, and then waits, and
illumination comes. If you want to be able to solve difficult
problems you must learn to do the same.
LESSON XVI. HOW CONCENTRATION CAN FULFILL YOUR DESIRE
"It is a spiritual law that the desire to do necessarily implies
the ability to do."
You have all read of "Aladdin's Lamp," which accomplished such
wonderful things. This, of course, is only a fairy story, but it
illustrates the fact that man has within him the power, if he is
able to use it, to gratify his every wish.
If you are unable to satisfy your deepest longings it is time you
learned how to use your God-given powers. You will soon be
conscious that you have latent powers within capable when once
developed of revealing to you priceless knowledge and unlimited
possibilities of success.
Man should have plenty of everything and not merely substance to
live on as so many have. All natural desires can be realized. It
would be wrong for the Infinite to create wants that could not be
supplied. Man's very soul is in his power to think, and it,
therefore, is the essence of all created things. Every instinct
of man leads to thought, and in every thought there is great
possibility because true thought development, when allied to
those mysterious powers which perhaps transcend it, has been the
cause of all the world's true progress.
In the silence we become conscious of "that something" which
transcends thought and which uses thought as a medium for
expression. Many have glimpses of "that something," but few ever
reach the state where the mind is steady enough to fathom these
depths. Silent, concentrated thought is more potent than spoken
words, for speech distracts from the focusing power of the mind
by drawing more and more attention to the without.
Man must learn more and more to depend on himself; to seek more
for the Infinite within. It is from this source alone that he
ever gains the power to solve his practical difficulties. No one
should give up when there is always the resources of Infinity.
The cause of failure is that men search in the wrong direction
for success, because they are not conscious of their real powers
that when used are capable of guiding them.
The Infinite within is foreign to those persons who go through
life without developing their spiritual powers. But the Infinite
helps only he who helps himself. There is no such thing as a
Special "Providence." Man will not receive help from the Infinite
except to the extent that he believes and hopes and prays for
help from this great source.
Concentrate on What You Want and Get It. The weakling is
controlled by conditions. The strong man controls conditions. You
can be either the conqueror or the conquered. By the law of
concentration you can achieve your heart's desire. This law is so
powerful that that which at first seems impossible becomes
By this law what you at first see as a dream becomes a reality.
Remember that the first step in concentration is to form a Mental
Image of what you wish to accomplish. This image becomes a
thought-seed that attracts thoughts of a similar nature. Around
this thought, when it is once planted in the imagination or
creative region of the mind, you group or build associated
thoughts which continue to grow as long as your desire is keen
enough to compel close concentration.
Form the habit of thinking of something you wish to accomplish
for five minutes each day. Shut every other thought out of
consciousness. Be confident that you will succeed; make up your
mind that all obstacles that are in your way will be overcome and
you can rise above any environment.
You do this by utilizing the natural laws of the thought world
which are all powerful.
A great aid in the development of concentration is to write out
your thoughts on that which lies nearest your heart and to
continue, little by little, to add to it until you have as nearly
as possible exhausted the subject.
You will find that each day as you focus your forces on this
thought at the center of the stream of consciousness, new plans,
ideas and methods will flash into your mind. There is a law of
attraction that will help you accomplish your purpose. An
advertiser, for instance, gets to thinking along a certain line.
He has formed his own ideas, but he wants to know what others
think. He starts out to seek ideas and he soon finds plenty of
books, plans, designs, etc., on the subject, although when he
started he was not aware of their existence.
The same thing is true in all lines. We can attract those things
that will help us. Very often we seem to receive help in a
miraculous way. It may be slow in coming, but once the silent
unseen forces are put into operation, they will bring results so
long as we do our part. They are ever present and ready to aid
those who care to use them. By forming a strong mental image of
your desire, you plant the thought-seed which begins working in
your interest and, in time, that desire, if in harmony with your
higher nature, will materialize.
It may seem that it would be unnecessary to caution you to
concentrate only upon achievement that will be good for you and
work no harm to another, but there are many who forget others and
their rights, in their anxiety to achieve success. All good
things are possible for you to have, but only as you bring your
forces into harmony with that law that requires that we mete out
justice to fellow travelers as we journey along life's road. So
first think over the thing wanted and if it would be good for you
to have; say, "I want to do this; I am going to work to secure
it. The way will be open for me."
If you fully grasp mentally the thought of success and hold it in
mind each day, you gradually make a pattern or mold which in time
will materialize. But by all means keep free from doubt and fear,
the destructive forces. Never allow these to become associated
with your thoughts.
At last you will create the desired conditions and receive help
in many unlooked-for ways that will lift you out of the undesired
environment. Life will then seem very different to you, for you
will have found happiness through awakening within yourself the
power to become the master of circumstances instead of their
To the beginner in this line of thought some of the things stated
in this book may sound strange, even absurd, but, instead of
condemning them, give them a trial. You will find they will work
The inventor has to work out his idea mentally before he produces
it materially. The architect first sees the mental picture of the
house he is to plan and from this works out the one we see. Every
object, every enterprise, must first be mentally created.
I know a man that started in business with thirteen cents and not
a dollar's worth of credit. In ten years he has built up a large
and profitable business. He attributes his success to two
things--belief that he would succeed and hard work. There were
times when it did not look like he could weather the storm. He
was being pressed by his creditors who considered him bankrupt.
They would have taken fifty cents on the dollar for his notes and
considered themselves lucky. But by keeping up a bold front he
got an extension of time when needed. When absolutely necessary
for him to raise a certain sum at a certain time he always did
it. When he had heavy bills to meet he would make up his mind
that certain people that owed him would pay by a certain date and
they always did. Sometimes he would not receive their check until
the last mail of the day of the extension, and I have known him
to send out a check with the prospect of receiving a check from
one of his customers the following day. He would have no reason
other than his belief in the power of affecting the mind of
another by concentration of thought for expecting that check, but
rarely has he been disappointed.
Just put forth the necessary concentrated effort and you will be
wonderfully helped from sources unknown to you.
Remember the mystical words of Jesus, the Master: "Whatsoever
thing ye desire when ye pray, pray as if ye had already received
and ye shall have."
LESSON XVII. IDEALS DEVELOPED BY CONCENTRATION
Through our paltry stir and strife, Glows the wished Ideal, And
longing molds in clay, what life Carves in the marble
We often hear people spoken of as idealists. The fact is we are
all idealists to a certain extent, and upon the ideals we picture
depends our ultimate success. You must have the mental image if
you are to produce the material thing. Everything is first
created in the mind. When you control your thoughts you become a
creator. You receive divine ideas and shape them to your
individual needs. All things of this world are to you just what
you think they are. Your happiness and success depend upon your
You are responsible for every condition you go through, either
consciously or unconsciously. The next step you take determines
the succeeding step. Remember this; it is a valuable lesson. By
concentrating on each step as you go along, you can save a lot of
waste steps and will be able to choose a straight path instead of
a roundabout road.
Concentrate Upon Your Ideals and They Will Become Material
Actualities. Through concentration we work out our ideals in
physical life. Your future depends upon the ideals you are
forming now. Your past ideals are determining your present.
Therefore, if you want a bright future, you must begin to prepare
for it today.
If persons could only realize that they can only injure
themselves, that when they are apparently injuring others they
are really injuring themselves, what a different world this would
We say a man is as changeable as the weather. What is meant is
his ideals change. Every time you change your ideal you think
differently. You become like a rudderless boat on an ocean.
Therefore realize the importance of holding to your ideal until
it becomes a reality.
You get up in the morning determined that nothing will make you
lose your temper. This is your ideal of a person of real strength
and poise. Something takes place that upsets you completely and
you lose your temper. For the time being you forget your ideal.
If you had just thought a second of what a well-poised person
implies you would not have become angry. You lose your poise when
you forget your ideal. Each time we allow our ideals to be
shattered we also weaken our will-power. Holding to your ideals
develops will-power. Don't forget this.
Why do so many men fail? Because they don't hold to their ideal
until it becomes a mental habit. When they concentrate on it to
the exclusion of all other things it becomes a reality.
"I am that which I think myself to be."
Ideals are reflected to us from the unseen spirit. The laws of
matter and spirit are not the same. One can be broken, but not
the other. To the extent that ideals are kept is your future
It was never intended that man should suffer. He has brought it
upon himself by disobeying the laws of nature. He knows them so
cannot plead ignorance. Why does he break them? Because he does
not pay attention to those ideals flashed to him from the
Life is but one continuous unfoldment, and you can be happy every
step of the way or miserable, as you please; it all depends upon
how we entertain those silent whisperings that come from we know
not where. We cannot hear them with mortal ear, but from the
silence they come as if they were dreams, not to you or me alone,
but to everyone. In this way the grandest thoughts come to us, to
use or abuse. So search not in treasured volumes for noble
thoughts, but within, and bright and glowing vision will come to
be realized now and hereafter.
You must give some hours to concentrated, consistent, persistent
thought. You must study yourself and your weaknesses.
No man gets over a fence by wishing himself on the other side. He
No man gets out of the rut of dull, tiresome, monotonous life by
merely wishing himself out of the rut. He must climb.
If you are standing still, or going backward, there is something
wrong. You are the man to find out what is wrong.
Don't think that you are neglected, or not understood, or not
Such thoughts are the thoughts of failure.
Think hard about the fact that men who have got what you envy got
it by working for it.
Don't pity yourself, criticise yourself.
You know that the only thing in the world that you have got to
count upon is yourself.
LESSON XVIII. MENTAL CONTROL THROUGH CREATION
I attended a banquet of inventors recently. Each inventor gave a
short talk on something he thought would be accomplished in the
future. Many very much needed things were spoken of. One inventor
spoke of the possibilities of wireless telephone. Distance, he
said, would shortly be annihilated. He thought we would soon be
able to talk to the man in the submarine forty fathoms below the
surface and a thousand miles away. When he got through he asked
if there were any that doubted what he said. No one spoke up.
This was not a case of tactful politeness, as inventors like to
argue, but a case where no one present really doubted that the
inventor's vision would, in the future, materialize.
These shrewd men, some real geniuses, all thought we would in
time be able to talk to those a thousand miles away without
media. Now, if we can make an instrument so wonderful that we can
send wireless messages a thousand miles, is there any reason why
we should not through mental control transmit messages from one
person to another? The wireless message should not be as easy to
send as the projected thought.
The day will come when all business will employ highly developed
persons to send out influences. These influences will be so
dominating that employes will be partly controlled by them and so
you will profit more and more by your mental powers and depend on
them to draw to you all forces of a helpful nature. You will be
constantly sending out suggestions to your employes and friends.
They will receive these unconsciously, but in case yours is the
stronger personality they will carry them out the same as if you
had spoken them.
This is being done even today. A finely organized company secures
the combined effort of all its men. They may be each doing a
different kind of work, but all work to bring about the very best
results. The whole atmosphere is impregnated with a high standard
of workmanship. Everyone feels he must do his best. He could not
be in such surroundings and be satisfied to do anything but his
A business will succeed only to the extent that the efforts of
all are co-ordinated towards one result. At least one person is
needed to direct all toward the desired end. The person at the
head does not have to exactly outline to the others what steps to
take, but he must possess the mental power of control over
An up-to-date business letter is not written in a casual,
commonplace way today. The writer tries to convey something he
thinks the receiver will be interested to know. In this way he
awakens a responsive spirit. Sometimes just the addition of a
word or two will change a letter of the matter-of-fact style to
one that compels a response. It is not always what is actually in
a letter, but the spirit which it breathes that brings results.
That intangible something that defies analysis is the projected
thought of the master that brings back the harvest that it
But we should not always claim success for ourselves only. If you
are anxious that some friend or relative should succeed, think of
this person as becoming successful. Picture him in the position
you would like to see him in. If he has a weakness, desire and
command that it be strengthened; think of his shortcomings which
belong to his negative nature as being replaced by positive
qualities. Take a certain part of the day to send him thoughts of
an up-building nature. You can in this way arouse his mental
powers into activity, and once aroused, they will assert
themselves and claim their own.
We can accomplish a great deal more than many of us are ready to
believe by sending to another our direct, positive and
controlling suggestions of leadership, but whether a man is a
success or not is greatly determined by the way he acts on the
suggestions he receives.
We either advance or decline. We never stand still. Every time we
accomplish something it gives us ability to do greater things.
The bigger the attempt undertaken, the greater the things
accomplished in the future. As a business grows, the head of the
business also has to grow. He must advance and be ever the
guiding influence. By his power to control, he inspires
confidence in those associated with him. Often employes are
superior to their employers in some qualities, and, if they had
studied, instead of neglected their development, they could have
been employers of more commanding influence than those whom they
Through your mental power you can generate in another enthusiasm
and the spirit of success, which somehow furnishes an impetus to
do something worth while.
In concentrated mental control, there is a latent power more
potent than physical force. The person becomes aware that the
attitude of the mind has a power of controlling, directing and
governing other forces. He has been placed in an attitude capable
of acquiring that which he desires.
All of us no matter how strong we are, are affected by the mental
forces of our environment. There is no one that can remain
neutral to influences. The mind cannot be freed from the forces
of a place. If the environment of your place of business is not
helpful, it will be harmful. That is why a change of position
will often do a person a great deal of good.
No person was ever intended to live alone. If you are shut up
with only your own thoughts you suffer from mental starvation.
The mind becomes narrow; the mental powers weaken. Living alone
often causes some of the milder forms of insanity. If children do
not play with those their own age, but associate with only older
people, they will take on the actions of the older people. The
same is true of older persons if they associate with people
younger than they are. They take on the spirit of youth. If you
wish to retain your youth you need the influences of youth. Like
attracts like all over the world.
The thought element plays a great part in our lives. Every
business must not only command physical effort but it must also
command thought effort. There must be co-ordination of thought.
All employers should aim to secure employes that think along
similar lines. They will work in fuller sympathy with each other.
They will better understand each other. This enables them to help
each other, which would be utterly impossible if they were not in
sympathy with each other. It is this that goes to make up a
perfect organization, which directs and influences them toward
the one end. Instead of each person being a separate unit, each
one is like a spoke in a big wheel. Each member carries his own
load, and he would not think of shirking. Anyone working in such
an atmosphere could not help turning out his best work.
All great leaders must be able to inspire this co-operative
spirit. They first secure assistance through their mental
control. They then make their assistants realize the value of
mental control. Soon there is a close bond between them; they are
working toward a single purpose. They profit by their combined
effort. The result is that they accomplish much.
If your business is conducted in the right spirit, you can
instill your thoughts and your ideas into your employes. Your
methods and ideas become theirs. They don't know it, but your
mental forces are shaping their work. They are just as certain to
produce results as any physical force in nature.
The up-to-date business man of the future is going to take pains
to get his employes to think and reason better. He will not want
them to become depressed or discouraged. There is time that
instead of being wasted he will endeavor to have them use in
concentrated effort that will be profitable to both employer and
employed. There must be more of the spirit of justice enter into
the business of the future.
There is a firm I know that will not hire an employe until he has
filled out an application blank. No doubt those that fill it out
think it is foolishness, but it is not. A capable manager can
look over this application blank and pretty nearly tell if this
person will fit into his management. The main thing he wants to
know is the applicant's capacity for efficient co-operative
effort. He wants persons that have faith in themselves. He wants
them to realize that when they talk of misfortunes and become
blue they are likely to communicate the same depressing influence
to others. The up-to-date manager wants to guard against hiring
employes who will obstruct his success.
You must realize that every moment spent in thinking of your
difficulties of the past, every moment spent in bad company is
attracting to you all that is bad; is attracting influences that
must be shaken off before you can advance.
Many firms prefer to hire employes that never worked before so
that they have nothing to unlearn. They are then not trained, but
have no bad business habits to overcome. They are more easily
guided and grasp the new methods more effectively because they
are not contrary to what they have already learned. They are at
once started on the right road, and as they co-operate readily
they receive the mental support of the management in learning the
methods that have been perfected. This inspires confidence in
themselves and they soon become efficient and, finally, skilled
Most big business firms today employ efficiency experts. Each day
or week they are in a different department. They earn their money
because they familiarize persons with very little business
experience with plans that has taken the "expert" years of
training and much money to perfect.
The attitude we take has a great deal more to do with our success
than most of us realize. We must be able to generate those forces
that are helpful. There is a wonderful power in the thought
rightly controlled and projected and we must through
concentration develop this power to the fullest possible extent.
We are surrounded by many forces of which we know but little at
present. Our knowledge of these is to be wonderfully increased.
Each year we learn more about these psychic forces which are full
of possibilities of which we are not even dimly conscious. We
must believe in mental control, learn more about it, and use it,
if we want to command these higher powers and forces which will
unquestionably direct the lives of countless future generations.
LESSON XIX. A CONCENTRATED WILL DEVELOPMENT
New Method. You will find in this chapter a most effective and
most practical method of developing the will. You can develop a
strong one if you want to. You can make your Will a dynamo to
draw to you untold power. Exercises are given which will, if
practiced, strengthen your will, just as you would strengthen
your muscles by athletic exercises.
In starting to do anything, we must first commence with
elementary principles. Simple exercises will be given. It is
impossible to estimate the ultimate good to be derived from the
mental cultivation that comes through these attempts at
concentration. Even the simple exercises are not to be thought
useless. "In no respect," writes Doctor Oppenheim, "can a man
show a finer quality of will-power than in his own private,
intimate life." We are all subjected to certain temptations. The
Will decides whether we will be just, or unjust; pure of thought;
charitable in opinion; forbearing in overlooking other's
shortcomings; whether we live up to our highest standard. Since
these are all controlled by the Will, we should find time for
plenty of exercises for training of the will in our daily life.
You, of course, realize that your will should be trained. You
must also realize that to do this requires effort that you alone
can command. No one can call it forth for you.
To be successful in these exercises you must practice them in a
spirit of seriousness and earnestness. I can show you how to
train your will, but your success depends upon your mastery and
application of these methods.
New Methods of Will-Training. Select a quiet room where you will
not be interrupted; have a watch to determine the time, and a
note-book in which to enter observations. Start each exercise
with date and time of day.
Time decided on. Select some time of the day when most
convenient. Sit in a chair and look at the door-knob for ten
minutes. Then write down what you experienced. At first it will
seem strange and unnatural. You will find it hard to hold one
position for ten minutes. But keep as still as you can. The time
will seem long for it will probably be the first time you ever
sat and did nothing for ten minutes. You will find your thoughts
wandering from the door-knob, and you will wonder what there can
be in this exercise. Repeat this exercise for six days.
10 P. M. 2nd Day.
Notes. You should be able to sit quieter, and the time should
pass more quickly. You will probably feel a little stronger
because of gaining a better control of your will. It will brace
you up, as you have kept your resolution. 10 P. M. 3rd Day.
Notes. It may be a little harder for you to concentrate on the
door-knob as perhaps you had a very busy day and your mind kept
trying to revert to what you had been doing during the day. Keep
on trying and you will finally succeed in banishing all foreign
thoughts. Then you should feel a desire to gain still more
control. There is a feeling of power that comes over you when you
are able to carry out your will. This exercise will make you feel
bigger and it awakens a sense of nobility and manliness. You will
say, "I find that I can actually do what I want to and can drive
foreign thoughts out. The exercise, I can now see, is valuable."
10 P. M. 4th Day.
Notes. "I found that I could look at the door-knob and
concentrate my attention on it at once. Have overcome the
tendency to move my legs. No other thoughts try to enter as I
have established the fact that I can do what I want to do and do
not have to be directed. I feel that I am gaining in mental
strength, I can now see the wonderful value of being the master
of my own will-force. I know now if I make a resolution I will
keep it. I have more self-confidence and can feel my self-control
10 P. M. 5th Day.
Notes. "Each day I seem to increase the intensity of my
concentration. I feel that I can center my attention on anything
10 P. M. 6th Day.
Notes. "I can instantly center my whole attention on the
door-knob. Feel that I have thoroughly mastered this exercise and
that I am ready for another."
You have practiced this exercise enough, but before you start
another I want you to write a summary of just how successful you
were in controlling the flitting impulses of the mind and will.
You will find this an excellent practice. There is nothing more
beneficial to the mind than to pay close attention to its own
wonderful, subtle activities.
Secure a package of playing cards. Select some time to do the
exercise. Each day at the appointed time, take the pack in one
hand and then start laying them down on top of each other just as
slowly as you can, with an even motion. Try to get them as even
as possible. Each card laid down should completely cover the
under one. Do this exercise for six days.
Notes. Task will seem tedious and tiresome. Requires the closest
concentration to make each card completely cover the preceding
one. You will probably want to lay them down faster. It requires
patience to lay them down so slowly, but benefit is lost if not
so placed. You will find that at first your motions will be jerky
and impetuous. It will require a little practice before you gain
an easy control over your hands and arms. You probably have never
tried to do anything in such a calm way. It will require the
closest attention of your will. But you will find that you are
acquiring a calmness you never had before. You are gradually
acquiring new powers. You recognize how impulsive and impetuous
you have been, and how, by using your will, you can control your
Notes. You start laying the cards down slowly. You will find that
by practice you can lay them down much faster. But you want to
lay them down slowly and therefore you have to watch yourself.
The slow, steady movement is wearisome. You have to conquer the
desire of wanting to hurry up. Soon you will find that you can go
slowly or fast at will.
Notes. You still find it hard to go slowly. Your will urges you
to go faster. This is especially true if you are impulsive, as
the impulsive character finds it very difficult to do anything
slowly and deliberately. It goes against the "grain." This
exercise still is tiresome. But when you do it, it braces you up
mentally. You are accomplishing something you do not like to do.
It teaches you how to concentrate on disagreeable tasks. Writing
these notes down you will find very helpful.
Notes. I find that I am beginning to place the cards in a
mathematical way. I find one card is not completely covering
another. I am getting a little careless and must be more careful.
I command my will to concentrate more. It does not seem so hard
to bring it under control.
Notes. I find that I am overcoming my jerky movements, that I can
lay the cards down slowly and steadily. I feel that I am rapidly
gaining more poise. I am getting better control over my will each
day, and my will completely controls my movements. I begin to
look on my will as a great governing power. I would not think of
parting with the knowledge of will I have gained. I find it is a
good exercise and know it will help me to accomplish my tasks.
Notes. I begin to feel the wonderful possibilities of the will.
It gives me strength to think of the power of will. I am able to
do so much more and better work now, that I realize that I can
control my will action. Whatever my task, my will is concentrated
on it. I am to keep my will centered there until the task is
finished. The more closely and definitely I determine what I
shall do, the more easily the will carries it out. Determination
imparts compelling force to the will. It exerts itself more. The
will and the end act and react on each other.
Notes. Now try to do everything you do today faster. Don't hurry
or become nervous. Just try to do everything faster, but in a
You will find that the exercises you have practiced in
retardation have steadied your nerves, and thereby made it
possible to increase your speed. The will is under your command.
Make it carry out resolutions rapidly. This is how you build up
your self-control and your self-command. It is then that the
human machine acts as its author dictates.
You certainly should now be able to judge of the great benefit
that comes from writing out your introspections each day. Of
course you will not have the exact experiences given in these
examples, but some of these will fit your case. Be careful to
study your experiences carefully and make as true a report as you
can. Describe your feelings just as they seem to you. Allow your
fancies to color your report and it will be worthless. You have
pictured conditions as you see them. In a few months, if you
again try the same exercises, you will find your report very much
better. By these introspections, we learn to know ourselves
better and with this knowledge can wonderfully increase our
efficiency. As you become used to writing out your report, it
will be more accurate. You thus learn how to govern your
impulses, activities and weaknesses.
Each person should try to plan exercises that will best fit his
needs. If not convenient for you to practice exercises every day,
take them twice or three times a week. But carry out any plan you
decide to try. If you cannot devote ten minutes a day to the
experiments start with five minutes and gradually increase the
time. The exercises given are only intended for examples.
Will Training Without Exercise. There are many people that do not
want to take the time to practice exercises, so the following
instructions for training the will are given to them.
By willing and realizing, the will grows. Therefore the more you
will, the more it grows, and builds up power. No matter whether
your task is big or small, make it a rule to accomplish it in
order to fortify your will. Form the habit of focusing your will
in all its strength upon the subject to be achieved. You form in
this way the habit of getting a thing done, of carrying out some
plan. You acquire the feeling of being able to accomplish that
which lies before you, no matter what it is. This gives you
confidence and a sense of power that you get in no other way. You
know when you make a resolution that you will keep it. You do not
tackle new tasks in a half-hearted way, but with a bold, brave
spirit. We know that the will is able to carry us over big
obstacles. Knowing this despair never claims us for a victim. We
have wills and are going to use them with more and more
intensity, thus giving us the power to make our resolutions
stronger, our actions freer and our lives finer and better.
The education of the will should not be left to chance. It is
only definite tasks that will render it energetic, ready,
persevering and consistent. The only way it can be done is by
self-study and self-discipline. The cost is effort, time and
patience, but the returns are valuable. There are no magical
processes leading to will development, but the development of
your will works wonders for you because it gives you
self-mastery, personal power and energy of character.
Concentration of the Will to Win. The adaptability of persons to
their business environment is more a matter of determination than
anything else. In this age we hear a good deal of talk about a
man's aptitudes. Some of his aptitudes, some of his powers, may
be developed to a wonderful extent, but he is really an unknown
quality until all his latent powers are developed to their
highest possible extent. He may be a failure in one line and a
big success in another. There are many successful men, that did
not succeed well at what they first undertook, but they profited
by their efforts in different directions, and this fitted them
for higher things, whereas had they refused to adjust themselves
to their environment, the tide of progress would have swept them
My one aim in all my works is to try and arouse in the individual
the effort and determination to develop his full capacities, his
highest possibilities. One thing I want you to realize at the
start, that it is not so much ability, as it is the will to do
that counts. Ability is very plentiful, but organizing initiative
and creative power are not plentiful. It is easy to get employes,
but to get someone to train them is harder. Their abilities must
be directed to the work they can do. They must be shown how,
while at this work, to conserve their energy and they must be
taught to work in harmony with others, for most business concerns
are dominated by a single personality.
Concentrating on Driving Force Within. We are all conscious, at
times, that we have somewhere within us an active driving force
that is ever trying to push us onward to better deeds. It is that
"force" that makes us feel determined at times to do something
worth while. It is not thought, emotion or feeling. This driving
force is something distinct from thought or emotion. It is a
quality of the soul and therefore it has a consciousness all its
own. It is the "I will do" of the will. It is the force that
makes the will concentrate. Many have felt this force working
within them, driving them on to accomplish their tasks. All great
men and women become conscious that this supreme and powerful
force is their ally in carrying out great resolutions.
This driving force is within all, but until you reach a certain
stage you do not become aware of it. It is most useful to the
worthy. It springs up naturally without any thought of training.
It comes unprovoked and leaves unnoticed. Just what this force is
we do not know, but we do know that it is what intensifies the
will in demanding just and harmonious action.
The ordinary human being, merely as merchandise, if he could be
sold as a slave, would be worth ten thousand dollars. If somebody
gave you a five thousand dollar automobile you would take very
good care of it. You wouldn't put sand in the carburetor, or mix
water with the gasoline, or drive it furiously over rough roads,
or leave it out to freeze at night.
Are you quite sure that you take care of your own body, your own
health, your only real property, as well as you would take care
of a five thousand dollar automobile if it were given to you?
The man who mixes whiskey with his blood is more foolish than a
man would be if he mixed water with gasoline in his car.
You can get another car; you cannot get another body.
The man who misses sleep lives irregularly--bolts his food so
that his blood supply is imperfect. That is a foolish man
treating himself as he would not treat any other valuable piece
Do you try to talk with men and women who know more than you do,
and do you LISTEN rather than try to tell them what you know?
There are a hundred thousand men of fifty, and men of sixty,
running along in the old rut, any one of whom could get out of it
and be counted among the successful men if only the spark could
be found to explode the energy within them now going to waste.
Each man must study and solve his own problem.
LESSON XX. CONCENTRATION REVIEWED
In bringing this book to a close, I again want to impress you
with the inestimable value of concentration, because those that
lack this great power or, rather that fail to develop it, will
generally suffer from poverty and unhappiness and their life's
work will most often be a failure, while those that develop and
use it will make the most of life's opportunities,
I have tried to make these lessons practical and I am sure that
many will find them so. Of course the mere reading of them will
not do you a great deal of good, but, if the exercises are
practiced and worked out and applied to your own individual case,
you should be able to acquire the habit of concentration in such
measure as to greatly improve your work and increase your
But remember the best instruction can only help you to the extent
to which you put it into practice. I have found it an excellent
idea to read a book through first, and then re-read it, and when
you come to an idea that appeals to you, stop and think about it,
then if applicable to you, repeat it over and over, that you will
be impressed by it. In this way you can form the habit of picking
out all the good things you read and these will have a wonderful
influence on your character.
In this closing chapter, I want to impress you to concentrate on
what you do, instead of performing most of your work
unconsciously or automatically, until you have formed habits that
give you the mastery of your work and your life powers and
Very often the hardest part of work is thinking about it. When
you get right into it, it does not seem so disagreeable. This is
the experience of many when they first commence to learn how to
concentrate. So never think it a difficult task, but undertake it
with the "I Will Spirit" and you will find that its acquirement
will be as easy as its application will be useful.
Read the life of any great man, and you will generally find that
the dominant quality that made him successful was the ability to
concentrate. Study those that have been failures and you will
often find that lack of concentration was the cause.
"One thing at a time, and that done will
Is a good rule as I can tell."
All men are not born with equal powers, but it is the way they
are used that counts. "Opportunity knocks at every man's door."
Those that are successful hear the knock and grasp the chance.
The failures believe that luck and circumstances are against
them. They always blame someone else instead of themselves for
their lack of success. We get what is coming to us, nothing more
or less. Anything within the universe is within your grasp. Just
use your latent powers and it is yours. You are aided by both
visible and invisible forces when you concentrate on either "to
do" or "to be."
Everyone is capable of some concentration, for without it you
would be unable to say or do anything. People differ in the power
to concentrate because some are unable to Will to hold the
thought in mind for the required time. The amount of
determination used determines who has the strongest will. No
one's is stronger than yours. Think of this whenever you go
against a strong opponent.
Never say "I can't concentrate today." You can do it just the
minute you say "I will." You can keep your thoughts from
straying, just the same as you can control your arms. When once
you realize this fact, you can train the will to concentrate on
anything you wish. If it wanders, it is your fault. You are not
utilizing your will. But, don't blame it on your will and say it
is weak. The will is just the same whether you act as if it were
weak or as if it were strong. When you act as if your will is
strong you say, "I can." When you act as if it were weak you say,
"I can't." It requires the same amount of effort, in each case.
Some men get in the habit of thinking "I can't" and they fail.
Others think "I can" and succeed. So remember, it is for you to
decide whether you will join the army of "I can't" or "I can."
The big mistake with so many is that they don't realize that when
they say "I can't," they really say, "I won't try." You can not
tell what you can do until you try. "Can't" means you will not
try. Never say you cannot concentrate, for, when you do, you are
really saying that you refuse to try.
Whenever you feel like saying, "I can't," say instead, "I possess
all will and I can use as much as I wish." You only use as much
as you have trained yourself to use.
An Experiment to Try. Before going to bed tonight, repeat, "I am
going to choose my own thoughts, and to hold them as long as I
choose. I am going to shut out all thoughts that weaken or
interfere; that make me timid. My Will is as strong as anyone's
else. While going to work the next morning, repeat this over.
Keep this up for a month and you will find you will have a better
opinion of yourself. These are the factors that make you a
success. Hold fast to them always.
Concentration is nothing but willing to do a certain thing. All
foreign thoughts can be kept out by willing that they stay out.
You cannot realize your possibilities until you commence to
direct your mind. You then do consciously what you have before
done unconsciously. In this way you note mistakes, overcome bad
habits and perfect your conduct.
You have at times been in a position that required courage and
you were surprised at the amount you showed. Now, when once you
arouse yourself, you have this courage all the time and it is not
necessary to have a special occasion reveal it to you. My object
in so strongly impressing this on your mind is to make you aware
that the same courage, the same determination that you show at
certain exceptionable times you have at your command at all
times. It is a part of your vast resources. Use it often and
well, in working out the highest destiny of which you are
Final Concentration Instruction. You now realize that, in order
to make your life worthy, useful and happy, you must concentrate.
A number of exercises and all the needed instruction has been
given. It now remains for you to form the highest ideal that you
can in the present and live up to that ideal, and try to raise
it. Don't waste your time in foolish reading. Select something
that is inspiring, that you may become enrapport with those that
think thoughts that are worth while. Their enthusiasm will
inspire and enlighten you. Read slowly and concentrate on what
you are reading. Let your spirit and the spirit of the author
commune, and you will then sense what is between the lines--those
great things which words cannot express.
Pay constant attention to one and one thing only for a given time
and you will soon be able to concentrate. Hang on to that thought
ceaselessly until you have attained your object. When you work,
let your mind dwell steadily on your task. Think before you speak
and direct your conversation to the subject under discussion. Do
not ramble. Talk slowly, steadily and connectedly. Never form the
hurry habit, but be deliberate in all you do. Assume static
attitudes without moving a finger or an eyelid, or any part of
your body. Read books that treat of but one continuous subject.
Read long articles and recall the thread of the argument.
Associate yourself with people who are steady, patient and
tireless in their thought, action and work. See how long you can
sit still and think on one subject without interruption.
Concentrating on the Higher Self. Father Time keeps going on and
on. Every day he rolls around means one less day for you on this
planet. Most of us only try to master the external conditions of
this world. We think our success and happiness depends on us
doing so. These are of course important and I don't want you to
think they are not, but I want you to realize that when death
comes, only those inherent and acquired qualities and conditions
within the mentality--your character, conduct and soul
growth--will go with you. If these are what they should be, you
need not be afraid of not being successful and happy, for with
these qualities you can mold external materials and conditions.
Study yourself. Find Your Strong Points And Make Them Stronger As
Well As Yo Weak Ones And Strengthen Them. Study yourself
carefully and you will see yourself as you really are.
The secret of accomplishment is concentration, or the art of
turning all your power upon just one point at a time.
If you have studied yourself carefully you should have a good
line on yourself, and should be able to make the proper interior
re-adjustments. Remember first, last, and always, Right thinking
and right Living necessarily results in happiness, and it is
therefore within your power to obtain happiness. Anyone that is
not happy does not claim their birthright.
Keep in mind that some day you are going to leave this world and
think of what you will take with you. This will assist you to
concentrate on the higher forces. Now start from this minute, to
act according to the advice of the higher self in everything you
do. If you do, its ever harmonious forces will necessarily insure
to you a successful fulfilment of all your life purposes.
Whenever you feel tempted to disobey your higher promptings, hold
You possess latent talents, that when developed and utilized are
of assistance to you and others. But if you do not properly use
them, you shirk your duty, and you will be the loser and suffer
from the consequences. Others will also be worse off if you do
not fulfil your obligations.
When you have aroused into activity your thought powers you will
realize the wonderful value of these principles in helping you to
carry out your plans. The right in the end must prevail. You can
assist in the working out of the great plan of the universe and
thereby gain the reward, or you can work against the great plan
and suffer the consequences. The all consuming fires are
gradually purifying all discordant elements. If you choose to
work contrary to the law you will burn in its crucible, so I want
you to learn to concentrate intelligently on becoming in harmony
with your higher self. Hold the thought:
"I-will-live-for-my-best. I-seek-wisdom, self-knowledge,
therefore-only-the-best-can-come-to-me. The more we become
conscious of the presence of the higher self the more we should
try to become a true representative of the human soul in all its
wholeness and holiness, instead of wasting our time dwelling on
some trifling external quality or defect. We should try to secure
a true conception of what we really are so as not to over value
the external furnishings. You will then not surrender your
dignity or self respect, when others ignorantly make a display of
material things to show off. Only the person that realizes that
he is a permanent Being knows what the true self is.
End of The Power of Concentration, by Dumont
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