Think & Grow Rich Lessons
Michael Grant Simon Stillwater, Minnesota, United States

Posted: 2020-11-04


Everything great achievement by individuals in this world began with thought.  As Hill states “thoughts are things.”  These thoughts are powerful when one has a purpose and desire for something along with persistence.  They will continue their quest no matter what.   One of my favorite examples was Edwin C. Barnes.  Barnes had the desire and determination that he was going to go into business with Thomas Edison.   Barnes did not have the money to pay his way to Orange New Jersey, so he jumped a freight train.   Once in Orange, Barnes went straight to Edison’s laboratory and informed Edison why he was there.  Barnes look like an ordinary blog of the street. In other words there was nothing special that stuck out with the exception of his expression.  Edison could see he had hunger and desire in his eyes. 


Edison ended up giving Barnes a job with menial wages. Today we would call it entry level with limited responsibility.  Barnes took the opportunity and ran with it.  For years Barnes did above and beyond his duties.  No job is perfect in every moment of every day.  Many will get discouraged, irritated, have doubts and start looking for opportunities on a different ship.  Barnes, however, stuck with it.  Why? Barnes had the desire, which began with a thought of him going into business with Edison.

Barnes got his breakthrough when Edison developed his dictating machine.  Edison’s sales professional were not excited to sell this new product.  Barnes on the other hand saw this an opportunity and believed he could sell the machines.  He got a chance and succeeded well beyond expectations.  Edison awarded Barnes with a distributor contract, which allowed Barnes to sell these machines all over the United States. Barnes in turn became a very wealthy man.  

This example is very significant because it is covered in the first few pages of chapter one of Napleon Hill’s “Think And Grow Rich”, Barnes did.    


An analogy is Roger Bannister who was the first human in the world to break the four minute mile on the sixth day of May in Nineteen Hundred and Fifty Four.  This record held for only forty six days before John Landy and Australian broke the four minute barrier.  Then three more runners in the next year broke the four minute barrier in the same race.  Bannister broke the physical barrier on the mile run as Barnes was the Hill’s first example that becoming wealthy starts with a thought!

Hill provides many great examples throughout his book and even more are included in the revised editions.   One more example worth mentioning here is R.U. Darby.  Many people who are self made with wealth had failures prior. Darby is a perfect example. 

Darby partnered with his Uncle during the Gold Rush days in Colorado.  His uncle had dug and discovered a shiny ore.  Darby and his Uncle invested in drilling equipment and went for the giant pile of Gold.  They dug and they dug,  but came up unsuccessful and they eventually stopped drilling.  They ended up selling their drilling equipment for pennies on the dollar to and ordinary Joe and went home. This ordinary Joe was no fool, he had limited knowledge on mining so he retained a mining engineer who had expertise.  The engineer determined that Darby and his Uncle were not familiar with the fault lines.  They stopped drilling just three feet from the Vein of Gold.  This is an example of somebody’s loss becomes somebody else’s gain.

Most individuals who experience a situation like this will throw in the towel and feel sorry for himself.  Darby went into the Insurance business.   The insurance industry, but like Network Marketing can be rewarding for those who stick it out.   Darby got plenty of No’s, but this did not stop him.   Darby continually repeated to himself, “I stopped three feet from gold, but I will never stop because men say no, when I ask them to buy insurance.  Darby might have never succeeded in insurance if he had not failed at mining for Gold.  Like Barnes, Darby had the proper thought life, desire, and persistence to succeed.


Network Marketing is no different.  Many will try it, but most will fail.  This has nothing to do with their talents or backgrounds it’s because they don’t believe in themselves.  Barnes was not necessarily talented but he had a belief in himself, a desire, and the persistence.  He would not give up.  As Michael teaches, the first thing is we need to find a five pillar company. The folks in Mentoring for Free appear to represent different ones which is great.  The next step is you need to think you can do and will do it. 


This is easier said than done.  We all have challenges and life never stops.  This is election night and I have chosen to ignore the television because of what this does to me.  I get overly worried, anxious over an outcome, which I have limited control.  As Les Brown says, “When something bad happens in the world, someone will probably tell you.”  Therefore, I have chosen to do something positive and write my lesson.   I give a lot of credit to Michael Dloughy for this.  Thank you Michael and Linda Dloughy for developing this wonderful program.  Thank you Rick Burnett for reaching out to me.  Thank you to everyone who participates on these weekly calls.

The book of Proverbs chapter three verse number 5, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.”

Michael Simon