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Napoleon Hill - Learning From Adversity and Defeat

Napoleon Hill's Principle of Learning From Adversity and Defeat is what I speak, write, and think about most often. I wrote the article below while I was experiencing a negative attitude due to the pain and achiness and fatigue from my Rheumatoid Arthritis.



As I am writing this, I am sitting in my home office, surrounded by books and pictures that cause me to think about how you, and others, think and feel.

I am aching all over from my Rheumatoid Arthritis. I don’t know the reason why. Friends with RA are saying it is because of the change in weather. I think that may be correct. It doesn’t matter. It is still very uncomfortable. I was supposed to go the gym tonight and didn’t go so I am sitting in my home office. With this overall achiness and pain comes even greater fatigue than usual. A fellow RA sufferer was speaking with me about fatigue being as big a challenge as the pain in our joints. Fighting pain 24/7 causes extreme fatigue. Even people who know of my aches and pains don’t often think of the fatigue I endure all the time. People who use ‘too tired’ as an excuse for not doing something sometimes (often) annoy me. If I used that excuse, I would do nothing with my life.

I was feeling and thinking negatively which is not like me. The increased pain and achiness and fatigue disrupted my positive thinking briefly. Then I looked around at the walls and my attitude soon shifted dramatically.

On the walls I have Michael Telepary’s artwork of Napoleon Hill’s Success Principles, as taught by the Napoleon Hill Foundation. He worked with Judy Williamson extensively (lots of time spent) to depict the Principles. His book, Envisioning Success, is on every page of my website (maybe not the older pages but all new ones in my blog). The link goes directly to the Napoleon Hill Foundation and I make no money selling that book. You have all heard the saying that a picture speaks a thousand words. These speak much more than that as they touch your mind, emotions, actions, and creativity.

Looking across from my desk is my Napoleon Hill Foundation Instructor’s Certificate, signed by my dear friend, Judy Williamson, Director of the Napoleon Hill World Learning Center. I get chills many times when I look up from my laptop to see it.

I have the front page of about a 10 page biography summation titled The Remarkable Life of W. Clement Stone. The partnership that Stone and Hill built is blessing me beyond measure, and millions of others around the world, every year through people whose lives were impacted positively by Napoleon Hill’s writings.

I have a letter from friend my friend and soon to be Certified Instructor, Jeremy Rayzor, about the pre-production edition of his brilliant (I am jealous for real) board game for kids, and adults, called Achievus. Jeremy creates board games for kids that I could tell you about, but I won’t because Achievus is THE ONE! Imagine your kids learning at a young age about the real principles of living a successful, fulfilled, life and having fun doing it.

My Definite Purpose is written on paper that I was given by Christina Chia, the host of the Napoleon Hill International Convention. I spoke in March 2012 at the event, sharing the stage with Deepak Chopra, who was the keynote speaker for the event. Underneath that are my goals for the year.

Behind me are books. Lots of them. If I had every book I ever bought, instead of giving so many away to people I thought could use it, I would have many more.

Two of the books on my desk are written by Nick Vujicic and John Robinson. If you don’t know who Nick Vujicic and John Robinson are, please learn about these guys. They were both born without arms or legs. I am somewhat happy/grateful (not a lot though) about the pains in my elbows, hands, fingers, knees, and ankles that I experience because I think to myself that they would love to experience my aches and pains and mobility challenges. They already have me beat on mobility challenges, even though I have plenty, because they have to be ultra-creative and brave with even worse mobility challenges than I have ever had.

I have about 6 Bibles on the bottom shelf. There are different study versions and a few Commentaries. I don’t read each a lot but, if you were in my office visiting me you would have no question what one of my favorite topics and books are.

I have many of the Napoleon Hill Foundation’s officially published books. Some I purchased, and the others were gifts from the Foundation.

I have pictures of the two World Vision children I sponsor. They both live in Malawi, a very poor area. If I think of my own challenges living in Canada, near Toronto, compared with theirs, it breaks my negative, complaining, thought pattern in a hurry.

I have a picture of Organo Gold Co-Founder, Shane Morand, and myself speaking to the then Prime Minister of Canada, Brian Mulroney. The very first goal I ever wrote was to meet the Prime Minister of Canada, Brian Mulroney. Shane showed me his Victory book method of goal setting to write it down using the 3 P’s. Personal, Positive and Present. It looked like this: I have met the Prime Minister of Canada, Brian Mulroney. I had just read a biography about Mulroney and had also just finished reading the Dale Carnegie book How To Win Friends and Influence People. I combined what I learned from those 2 books to write a strong, compelling, letter asking for 15 minutes of his time to help me accomplish my first ever written goal. A few months after I wrote the letter, I received a phone call asking me when I could meet with the Prime Minister and if I was bringing anyone with me. I brought Shane with me as my cameraman. Little did we know that we would not be allowed to bring it past the checkpoint. The Prime Minister has his own photographer.

I have a lot of hats. I love hats. They are almost all baseball type caps and most of those are sports related, from a variety of leagues. I have them stuffed into what is supposed to be a shoe bag that hangs over the back of the door. Replace shoes with hats and you get the idea. I lost some of the women readers at this point I know.

I have a nice, fairly good sized, television hanging on the wall beside my desk. I mostly watch sports. Probably 90% of the time. The Simpsons can still get me laughing even when I have seen most of the episodes numerous times. Laughing and sports is a great way to relax and think. I am blessed to work with a few big Simpsons fans. We quote different episodes and share various video clips throughout the day.

This home office is where I get to use Success Principles like Definite Purpose, Accurate Thinking, Creative Vision, and Controlled Attention. It helps me think of the Principle of Learning From Adversity and Defeat. I will be speaking about that Principle at the 2012 Leader Certification course in Ireland from October 28 – November 5 so I am thinking about what to say there.

I am blessed beyond measure to have this home office. It reflects my thoughts, emotions, Definite Purpose and goals as well as I can possibly imagine.

I think that if you had the exact same things on your walls that I have on mine, you would be having the time of your life in that office and anywhere else you wanted to go in life.

Where do you go to think about your Definite Purpose? I would love to hear.

What do you have, or plan to have, in your ideal home office? Email me as I would be interested to hear.

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