13 Sessions with Napoleon Hill
Think for Yourself


Session 00: Hill’s Prayer


“O Divine Providence, I ask not for more riches but more wisdom with which to make wiser use of the riches you gave me at birth, consisting in the power to control and direct my own mind to whatever ends I might desire.”

— Napoleon Hill


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Session One: Definiteness of Purpose


A. Remember this:

“Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, the mind can achieve”

B. Andrew Carnegie:

“… you have a great power under your control — the power to take possession of your mind and direct it to whatever ends you may desire — a gift from the creator”.

1. Two sealed envelopes

a. Riches – if you take possession of and direct your mind

b. Penalties – price of neglect of great power

C. The Starting Point:

1. On page one of your notebook, write down your major desire in life

2. Write what you intend to give in return for what you desire

3. Memorize both statements and repeat them 12 times daily, always ending with the following expression of gratitude:

O Divine Providence, I ask not for more riches but more wisdom with which to make wiser use of the riches you gave me at birth, consisting in the power to control and direct my own mind to whatever ends I might desire.


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Session Two: The Master Mind Principle

A. Definition: Two or more people who work in perfect harmony for the attainment of a definite purpose

B. Through the Master Mind Principle:

1. You may borrow and use the education, experience, influence, and the capitol of other people

2. You can accomplish in one year more than you could accomplish without it in a lifetime

3. You can draw freely upon the spiritual forces within you

4. You can have absolute protection against failure if your purpose is beneficial to all whom you influence

C. The success of all successful men can be attributed to the Master Mind Principle

D. Take the time to do the following:

1. Decide definitely what you want to do during the next three years

2. Decide how much money you want to make and how you’ll earn it

3. Form a Master Mind Alliance with a family member and one other person who will receive your services

E. Before beginning… remember to control your mental attitude — it is the only thing over which you have complete control

F. Definition of success: the knowledge with which to get whatever you want from life without violating the rights of others and by helping others to acquire it

1. Your readiness for success is recognizable by your willingness to follow without deviation the 13 sessions

G. Remember: your only real limitation is the one that you accept and set up in your own mind


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Session Three: The Habit of Going the Extra Mile

A. Definition: Rendering more service than is expected — with a positive mental attitude

B. The QQMA Formula: Quality of service + Quantity of service + mental attitude = (determines) the space you occupy in your chosen calling and the compensation you get for your services

C. Benefits of following QQMA Formula:

1. Will bring you to the attention of those who can provide you with opportunities

2. Will place back of you the law of increasing returns

3. Will make you indispensable in your chosen calling and therefore able to write your own ticket

4. Will help you excel in your line of work

5. Will make you better liked by others

6. Will help you develop a keen, alert imagination

7. Will inspire you to move on your own personal initiative

8. Will help you to master procrastination

9. Will influence others to respect your integrity and inspire them to go out of their way to cooperate with you

10. The biggest payoff… it provides you with the only excuse for asking for a promotion to a better station in life

11. Going the extra mile creates favorable breaks

D. Do these things and you will be within easy reach of the supreme secret of success:

1. Render some unexpected, useful service without expecting compensation

2. Render this service in a pleasing mental attitude

3. Follow this practice for seven days – and do so without revealing what you are doing (secretly!)

E. Remember:

If you believe it, you can do it


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Session Four: Applied Faith


A. Definition: the mental attitude wherein you may clear your mind of all fears and doubts and direct it to the attainment of whatever you desire in life.

B. To take complete possession of our minds we must cultivate and maintain applied faith

C. The one main difference that distinguishes successful people from failures is their capacity for belief

D. Belief is that one quality you must develop before you can make use of the master key to success

E. The place to start believing is with yourself:

1. Recognize you were born with the privilege of complete control over your own mind

2. You can make it yield for you whatever you demand (not beg for) in life

F. Applied faith is the only means by which the master key can be appropriated and used

G. To develop and use applied faith:

1. Know what you want and believe that you can and will get it

2. Express gratitude many times a daily for having already received it

3. Keep you mind open for hunches, and when you are inspired to action, move at once

4. When defeat comes, accept it as nothing more than a challenge to keep on trying

5. A burning desire is the starting point of applied faith… be definitive, believe, act, and keep on acting

6. Whenever doubt creeps in, remember that “Whatsoever a man believes, that shall he also receive”

H. You already have faith – use it positively

I. Remember, your life is exactly what you make it by your own mental attitude


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Session Five: A Pleasing Personality


A. Your personality is your unique trademark

B. It determines your success or failure in selling yourself

C. It consists of more than 30 factors – all are under your control

D. The most important factor… your mental attitude

1. Must be positive to attract others to you

2. You’re always revealing the exact nature of your personality

E. Other important factors:

1. Flexibility: makes it impossible for anyone to make you angry without your consent – you can control your reactions to others

2. Ability to control and direct your enthusiasm

3. Sincerity of purpose, which cannot be faked

F. Check yourself against this list of obstacles to a pleasing personality:

1. Interrupting others

2. Sarcasm

3. Vanity

4. Being a poor listener

5. Insincere flattery

6. Finding fault

7. Challenging others without good cause

8. Giving unsolicited advice

9. Complaining

10. Attitude of superiority

11. Envy of others’ success

12. Poor posture and dress

G. If you are not liked, there is a reason which you can correct


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Session Six: Self Discipline


A. The important things over which you must exercise well-discipline:

1. Your tongue

2. The tendency to strike back

3. All your emotions, especially love, hate, fear and sex

4. Your mental attitude

5. Sex: lack of self-discipline here heads the last of all causes of personal failure

a. Prosper means of sexual self-discipline is transmutation

6. Your stomach through proper diet and fasting

7. Religion and politics

8. Your privilege of taking possession and control of your mind

B. Self-discipline a key feature of all great religions

C. Required to find wisdom, happiness and peace of mind

D. Required to profit from misfortune and defeat

E. Required to discover your “other self” which is not subject to discouragement and defeat

F. Can free us from fear of death

G. Given by Creator as the means of embracing and using the power of our own thoughts

H. To exercise and develop your self-discipline:

1. Review sessions one through five

2. Act now to complete any unfinished steps that we have talked about in these sessions before going on to session seven. Do it.


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Session Seven: A Positive Mental Attitude


A. How you can develop and maintain a Positive Mental Attitude:

1. Adjust yourself to others’ states of mind

2. Establish a system of conditioning your mind at the beginning of each day

3. Sell yourself to others indirectly, and don’t argue

4. Adopt the habit of having a good laugh when you become irritated or angry

5. Start each day with an expression of gratitude for both the benefits your adversities have yielded and the days expected blessings

6. Concentrate on the “can do” portion of all your problems and desires, and do that portion now

7. Transmutate all unpleasant circumstances into immediate action which calls for a positive mental attitude

8. Remember that your strength grows out of your struggles

9. Look upon your life as a continuous education process; be on the alert to gain wisdom from all your experiences

10. Become more open indeed, patient and generous with others

11. Express gratitude twice daily for the gift of complete control over your mind, and ask for guidance in always using it wisely

12. Go out of your way daily to comment on others’ good qualities

13. Accept all criticism as an occasions for self-examination

14. Don’t accept from life anything you do not desire, remember the example of Gandhi

15. Refuse to permit yourself to worry

16. Keep your mind thinking of that which you desire most

17. If you’re feeling sorry for yourself, find and help someone who is worse off than you are

18. Choose and emulate in every way possible someone who is the sort of person you would like to be

19. Cultivate a pleasing tone of voice

20. Write out this sentence and put it in a prominent place where you work and on the mirror at home:

“Whatever the mind can conceive and believe the mind can achieve”


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Session Eight: Enthusiasm


A. Knowledge is power only when it is put into action towards a definite objective

1. Enthusiasm is a powerful means of doing this

B. Why enthusiasm has such a powerful impact on others:

1. Your stepped-up vibrations of thought affect others more quickly — this is one of the most important requirements for leadership

C. A short course in effective salesmanship…

1. Turn on your enthusiasm

2. Offer a firm, quick handshake

3. Begin conversation with a subject of interest to the other

4. Follow through by eagerly asking questions to keep attention focused on other person; then you will have prepared them to listen attentively to you

D. Master salesmanship: speaking with enthusiasm and selling yourself

1. The best way to sell yourself to others is first to sell the others to yourself

E. Enthusiasm is an expression of a positive mental attitude and a positive mental attitude promotes health

F. Prayer with intense enthusiasm brings quicker, better results

G. To learn to express yourself with enthusiasm:

1. Read aloud with all the enthusiasm at your command for 10 minutes each day

a. Write and use a list of 10 subjects of keenest interest to you as a reference of this reading practice

H. Enthusiasm is always easily expressed when one is inspired by a burning desire as the motive

1. These basic motives: love, sex, desire for financial gain — it’s said that a combination of all three can convert a mediocre person into a genius


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Session Nine: Personal Initiative


A. You must achieve success for yourself without someone telling you what to do or how to do it

B. A big success is made up of many little circumstances

C. Personal initiative inspires the forming of contacts with those who can help in times of need

D. You are a leader in your field if you rate “OK” on each of these 16 traits of personal initiative:

1. Define major purpose and a plan for attaining it

2. A master mind alliance

3. Persistence when faced with seeming obstacles

4. Decisiveness

5. You do more than is paid for with a positive mental attitude

6. You accept full responsibility for your undertakings

7. You can take friendly criticism and profit by it

8. You never request anything without giving the other an adequate motive for doing so

9. You never render an opinion unless you have thought the subject through and can state how you came by your opinion

10. You listen much, talk only when it may benefit yourself or others

11. Well-developed sense of small details

12. You never tell anyone to do anything without suggesting why

13. You concentrate full attention on one thing at a time

14. You always have a positive mental attitude in communication with other people

15. You answer questions with direct answers, including “I don’t know”

16. You never put off until tomorrow what should have been done last week

a. procrastination is near the top of causes of failure

E. To feed the flames of your personal initiative: Spend at least five minutes each morning alone visualizing yourself enjoying the fulfillment of your major desire in life


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Session Ten: Learning from Adversity and Defeat


A. You can transmute all past failures and mistakes into assets

B. A fact that may give you immediate possession of the master key: your positive mental attitude is the only means whereby you may convert adversities and defeats into assets

C. It seems adversity is nature’s method of disciplining people to learn to take possession of their own minds

D. Greatest blessings often come from the greatest adversities

E. Every adversity carries with it the seed of an equivalent benefit — example of this include:

1. Milo C. Jones

2. Franklin D. Roosevelt

3. You

a. Positive mental attitude is needed most to convert adversities into assets

4. Napoleon Hill

5. U.S. Revolution and our help to the British later

6. Trend to rob individuals of their rights of personal freedom

a. You can refuse to accept this trend and take full possession of your own mind

F. Law of nature: You lose what you do not use

G. An assignment for this session… Go back into your past experiences, study each adversity and failure and look for the seed of an equivalent benefit you had not before discovered

H. Remember: nothing can be called failure until you accept it as such


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Session Eleven: Imagination


A. Responsible for building all our plans, aims and purposes

B. Imagination is workshop wherein we fashion the purposes of our brain and the ideals of our soul

1. Two forms:

a. Synthetic – new combination of recognized ideas

b. Creative – based in subconscious mind (new ideas)

C. Imagination becomes alert only by constant action

D. Session assignment… Set aside some time each day to write down in a notebook at least 10 new ideas that will help you accomplish your major desire in life


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Session Twelve: Accurate Thinking


A. Accurate thinking is the foundation of all successful achievement

B. Separate facts from fiction or hearsay evidence

1. Separate important facts from unimportant facts

a. Important facts directly relate to your major purpose

C. Most opinions have no value since they’re not factual

D. A simple rule to avoid being misled: ask “how do you know?”

E. Learn and apply these seven rules of accurate thinking

1. Never accept opinions as facts

2. Avoid following free advice

3. Don’t trust information given in a discourteous or slanderous spirit

4. In asking for information, do not disclose what you wish the information to be

5. Anything which exists anywhere in the universe is capable of proof

6. Begin developing your intuition faculty which enables you to “sense” what is false and what is true

7. Follow the habit of asking, “How do you know?”

F. Study yourself carefully and you may discover that your own emotions are your greatest handicap in the business of accurate thinking


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Session Thirteen: The Law of Cosmic Habitforce


A. Gives definiteness of action to all things

B. lower life forms have instincts — man can rise above it

C. Cosmic habitforce has both positive and negative applications

D. Cosmic habitforce is the watchdog which examines all your thoughts, actions, and forces upon you penalties or rewards of the two sealed envelopes

E. Emerson’s essay: Compensation describes cosmic habitforce

F. How cosmic habitforce operates:

1. Everything lives and moves by the pasterns of cosmic habitforce

2. When human mind is focused on definite major purpose, cosmic habitforce acts to attract to the individual the material equivalent of that purpose

3. Sex transmutation is powerful use of this energy in accomplishing one’s major purpose

4. You are, “on the beam” when you have established a success thought pattern in your mind, engaging cosmic habitforce

5. You must have either positive fixation or be subject to negative mental attitudes called “hypnotic rhythm”

a. Fixations can become a priceless asset to those who have discovered the great master key to success

6. Your mental attitude is something you can control outright and you must use self-discipline until you create a positive mental attitude — your mental attitude attracts to you everything that makes you what you are

G. If you wish to keep on the beam that leads to success, be sure that you give cosmic habitforce a though pattern based on the things you want most in life, and it will do the rest


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