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Say It With me --- F__k The Self-Help Industry

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Posted 6th March 2015 at 05:50 PM by Young Financier

In this article, this will serve as the proverbial nail in the coffin for the self-help industry. I know you all have read my writings on this subject before but I'm about to take it to the next level this go round.

Of course there will be those who seek to defend the self-help industry by saying that there are successful entrepreneurs who attribute their success to having read a book like Think & Grow Rich. You'll find those people. --- BUT, what you will also notice is that for the most part, people who attribute their financial success to the study of self-help are usually from the umbrella of industries I consider to be "The Dream Selling Industry." That umbrella includes network marketing, internet marketing and success teaching/coaching. In other words, industries that thrive on selling dreams to people who earnestly desire to be successful. You'd be hard pressed to find any successful brick and mortar entrepreneur who will attribute their success to having read any of those types of books. In fact, from having met with wealthy people (guys with a net worth of 8-9 figures), many of them never even heard of such books, including Think & Grow Rich.

As much as I hated to do this, I had to face the possibility that Napoleon Hill may have also been one of the charlatans. I am now leaning towards the belief that this may in fact be the case. Here's an excellent write-up proving just that: Napoleon Hill - the Lies About Andrew Carnegie.

There's also another story I read concerning the true dealing between Napoleon Hill and Henry Ford (whom Hill credits for having contributed to most of his philosophy). The story goes:

About Napoleon Hill I remember... he himself was a poor man. That would have been enough proof to disprove his whole philosophy. He became rich by selling the book, THINK AND GROW RICH.

But it was not positive thinking that was making him rich – it was fools around the world who were purchasing the book, it was his work, his labor, his effort. But in the very beginning days, when his book came out, he used to stand in bookstores to persuade people to purchase the book.

And it happened that Henry Ford came in his latest model car and went into the bookshop to find something light to read. And Napoleon Hill did not want to miss this chance. He went forwards with his book and he said, ”A great book has just been published – you will be happy with it. And it is not only a book, it is a sure method of success.”

Henry Ford looked at the man and said, ”Are you the writer of the book?”

Napoleon Hill said proudly, ”Yes, I am the writer of the book.” And he can be proud: that book he has written is a piece of art. And to create a piece of art out of crap is real mastery.

Henry Ford, without touching the book, just asked one question, ”Have you come in your own car or on the bus?”

Napoleon Hill could not understand what he meant. He said, ”Of course, I came on the bus.”

Henry Ford said, ”Look outside. That is my private car, and I am Henry Ford. You are befooling others; you don’t have even a private car and you write a book called THINK AND GROW RICH! And I have grown rich without thinking, so I don’t want to bother with it. You think and grow rich! – and when you grow rich then you come to me. That will be the proof. The book is not the proof”

And it is said that Napoleon Hill never could gather up the courage to meet this old man, Henry Ford, again, even though he became a little richer. But compared to Henry Ford he was always a poor man and was bound to remain a poor man, always. But Henry Ford’s logic was clear.
Source: Why the Law of Attraction doesn?t work
I tried to verify this story by going straight to the source, some guy named Osho, and came up empty. I asked where did the story originate and was told that the origins are unknown, which leads me to believe that the story isn’t true. Also, Osho tends to say some pretty ignorant things concerning the self-help industry. He flat out twists the words of a lot of the authors and I’m lead to believe that this story was made up in order to validate his twisted version of these author’s work. Besides, I saw a photo of Napoleon Hill and Thomas Edison together (Edison was a good friend of Ford’s), so we can verify that Hill at least met Edison. Another thing….if Hill were lying about having met many of these people, wouldn’t those close to these men have called him out on it? I’m lead to believe that Hill may have exaggerated some things but was overall genuine in his work.

I'm gonna tell you like this --- this new age/self-help/motivational stuff is all bullshit. I've met and conversed with many wealthy businessmen and I've yet to find one who attributed their success to having read any of the self-help literature. In fact, many of them told me themselves that they'd never heard of even the most popular titles. I'm not talking about people who became wealthy through dream-selling, I'm referring to those who acquired their fortunes through industry. The most common theme I found with these wealthy businessmen is that they had a goal and worked their ass of through the trial and error method in order to get to where they are...period. There is no "formula for success" that is going to save you. You may not wanna hear this, but you're gonna have to get your hands dirty and find your own path. No more making self-help charlatans rich. I once drunk the kool-aid of this industry heavily and I was getting nowhere as a result. I've observed others who still drunk the kool-aid and I've yet to meet one who's actually successful --- their mode of thought seems to always center around "I'm gonna be wealthy someday." To that I say --- **** THAT!

When it comes down to it, you either wanna do a thing or you don't. No self-help literature is going to do anything to make you a success. In fact, it'll hinder you because you're going to waste your time studying theory instead of taking action in the real world and learning through trial and error. If you wanna get ahead, I say get rid of every self-help book you own, unlearn that bullshit that you've learned and begin here and now to apply yourself. You already know what you need to do in order to succeed....reading self-help literature is only a form of procrastination and insecurity. Reading self-help literature is also a form of looking for assurance of some sort. Let it go!
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