13 Principles from Think and Grow Rich(Napoleon Hill’s Book Summary)

It’s rather odd that I have been writing personal development blogs for a solid ten years, yet I have never touched on Napoleon Hill’s well-known book, ‘Think and Grow Rich,’ or the 13 principles I am about to go over in this post. You might wonder why. Well, the reason is pretty clear. I have held back because this book is incredibly popular, and there’s already a ton of content out there about it. It’s like, what more could I possibly contribute, right? But here’s the simple answer to why I am tackling it today: When information about something reaches a saturation point, it can lead to a shortage of truly valuable content. That’s why I believe the time is just right, to sum up this book and break down these principles.

I have always thought that this book is a bit complex for beginners, yet most of the people who start their self-improvement journey begin with this particular Napoleon Hill book. This can result in them either not being able to understand the material properly or completely misunderstanding it. I, too, was introduced to this book at the beginning, and it was really difficult to comprehend. Given my previous knowledge, something like this was not only overwhelming, but it felt like an entirely different subject.

However, just like when you set out on a journey, it takes time to get accustomed to the road. Gradually, I began to understand the content of the book. The content of the book is so profound that with every rereading, a person will find new insights. So, in this post, I’ll be diving into Napoleon Hill’s 13 principles from his book and giving you a glimpse of some important nuggets from this treasure trove of wisdom.

But before we delve into that, are you familiar with the backstory of the book? Allow me to share a video from one of the figures I deeply admire, Bob Proctor (may his soul rest in peace), in which he narrates this tale:-

Did you enjoy the story? Alright, now let’s get into the 13 crucial key points in the book “Think and Grow Rich” that effectively encapsulate its entire content.

# 1 – Generate Burning Desire

The power that has given birth to the greatest achievements of mankind is desire. It is the driving force, the fuel that propels the world along the path of progress and development. From an individualistic perspective, to achieve something significant in your life, a burning desire is essential, according to Napoleon Hill.

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Without a deep, burning desire to achieve your goals, you may lack the motivation to work towards them and may give up halfway. Goal setting plays a significant role here. Have a clear picture of what you want to achieve in your mind. Visualize your goal and use your imagination to feel the emotions generated by the images of the scenario where you have achieved that goal. If the mental images of your goal do not fill you with positive emotions, then it may not be the right goal for you. Find out what you are passionate about and pursue the goal that makes you elated when you think about it. The book also suggests that you write your goal clearly based on the 11 universal laws. However, this will only be applicable when you are sure that you have the required strong desire to achieve that goal.

# 2 – Have Unwavering Faith

Without faith, a goal is simply a dream. When you have unwavering faith in your ability and the power of the universe, that’s when you can make things happen and reach your intended destination.

When you desire something but don’t believe you can achieve it, you’ll never be able to actualize such goals because your efforts will lack the power that comes only with a strong belief. The good thing here is that you can develop faith, and Napoleon Hill recommends autosuggestion for this purpose, which is precisely what the next principle is about.

# 3 Use Auto Suggestions

You know what? The power of repeated affirmations and visualizations that we now hear about a lot was already suggested in this book, written more than 80 years ago! In the book, Napoleon suggests that the repeated use of positive statements has the power to generate the faith that is essential for achieving a goal.

To make your dreams come true, you have to convert them into actual goals by convincing your subconscious mind by using positive affirmations. This will make you believe in your dreams, which will then become your goals. I have written a post on how to create customized affirmations for this purpose.

In the book, the author also emphasizes the importance of writing down these suggestions. He motivates you to use them, especially during the early morning hours and before you go to bed. Perhaps, this is because he knew about the alpha state of mind even during that era.

# 4 Acquire Specialized Knowledge

A very important point; this principle suggests that to achieve a specific desire, you need to acquire the skills and knowledge necessary for the achievement of your goal. You have to be well-equipped with the right tools to deal with the challenges that may come along your path while pursuing your goals.

I remember reading this book when I was contemplating starting this blog about a decade ago. At that time, I had no idea about how to proceed toward my goals, but this particular information motivated me to explore various options to learn about this specific field. I dedicated myself to acquiring knowledge about online business.

So, dedicate yourself to honing your skills and learning anything that’s needed for your goals to be realized. Learn from those who have succeeded in achieving the goals you are pursuing. This is a practical step that you must not skip. Find the right people and avenues from which you will be able to receive the essential knowledge that will assist you on your journey!

#5 Imagination and Creative Visualization

This principle is extensively discussed in the book. Every great creation we witness in the world today initially existed as an imagination in the mind of its creator (referring to the person who conceived such ideas). The concept of manifesting your desires using creative visualization, which has also gained a lot of popularity in recent times, is also something included in these principles.

This principle implies that we should be able to creatively visualize the actualization of our goals before it becomes our reality. It highlights how desires can be communicated to the universe or a greater power with the help of our ability to imagine. The author also tells us how visualization is a very essential tool using which we can receive inspiration and ideas that can help us accomplish our goals. He motivates us to exercise this faculty of mind and strengthen it with practice.

#6 Approach Your Goals with Organized Planning

As much as the author talks about the previous principle that encourages imagining your desires, he also put a strong emphasis on planning out a way to achieve them and start working towards your goals in an organized manner.

This is something the modern-day self-improvement gurus have made extinct with too much focus on the word “manifestation”, it is an important part of this whole process, you need to plan your way to whatever you set off to achieve.

It is very understandable that you cannot plan everything, you don’t know the bigger picture but you can take the baby steps. Although you don’t know how you will reach your goals still you can plan something on your level and work upon that blueprint.

# 7 Decision Making

Napoleon Hill has provided numerous examples in his book of how only individuals who have mastered the art of decision-making have tasted success. It’s not just about making a decision but also about staying firm with it and not doubting it. I particularly appreciate the example of Henry Ford’s story about the V8 engine, which revolutionized the automobile industry. He made the decision to produce V8 engines, even though it was considered almost impossible to achieve. Despite his engineers saying it couldn’t be done and facing multiple failures, he remained committed to the idea until he achieved what he set out to accomplish. Henry Ford’s stories and his way of approaching things are very inspiring, it reflects his faith in his ability to make things possible that seem unachievable to others.

What stops us from making decisions is our fear of failure, but one needs to understand that failure is a part of the journey. Those who make decisions and stand by them not only overcome procrastination but also gain valuable lessons that will help them in the future.

# 8 Quality of Being Persistent

This is something that requires willpower. What follows the last principle is the ability to stick with one’s decision, even during times when nothing seems favorable. I cannot emphasize the importance of this point enough because I believe this is what matters the most. Those who pass this test surely make it to the top.

What happens is that when we embark on a journey down an unknown path, all our deepest fears confront us. We face our greatest enemies, and time tests us. I’m not saying this because I have a notion that there is a higher power checking our competency – no. The truth is that our own limiting beliefs are what are showing up as obstacles and causing us trouble. Our disbelief manifests itself as challenges often, and our ability to face them without giving up is a surefire way to transform it once and for all.

#9 Having a MasterMind Group

This is something I have personally never been able to establish in my social circle (but I am trying and surely will form a group like this someday). I have joined online groups like this many times, but having a social circle filled with like-minded individuals can be immensely beneficial in achieving your desired goals.

The presence of motivated, positive individuals who understand the importance of positive thoughts and the power of intention, especially those who believe in what is written in this book, can accelerate your progress. Discussing your aims and strategies with such people and getting ideas from them is something that can significantly help you actualize your dreams.

#10 Transmutation of Sexual Energy

This is perhaps the only point in the entire book that I advise my readers not to dwell on excessively. Not because I don’t believe in it, but because I understand how some individuals have become obsessed with this concept, to the point of losing their mental balance. This is especially relevant in light of recent trends.

The key is to understand that disciplining one’s mind is one thing, but suppressing natural desires is another. The two should not be confused. This is a complex subject that requires careful consideration. For now, I’ll explain in simple terms what the book says. According to Napoleon Hill, every person possesses sexual energy that can be harnessed and channeled to boost creativity and provide determination to achieve their goals. All I would like to say regarding this point is that you should aim to discipline your mind and dedicate time to doing things that involve creativity as well as things about which you are passionate.

#11 The Power of Subconscious Mind

This is my favorite principle. We’ve touched on it briefly in the preceding points. All our behavioral patterns and thoughts stem from the image we hold in our inner mind. By instilling positive suggestions and ideas in our subconscious mind, we can witness them materializing.

Our thoughts, emotions, and attitudes are all outcomes of the beliefs residing in our subconscious mind. Any idea implanted in our subconscious mind acts as a blueprint for our actions. That’s why we should aim to alter our subconscious beliefs through various activities like creative visualization, self-hypnosis, positive affirmations, meditation, energy clearing, repeated reading of positive books or blogs, and positive self-talk.

The bottom line is, that whatever personal development activity we choose to pursue, it ultimately aims to clear the old beliefs present in our subconscious mind and replace them with new, empowering beliefs. This leads to changes in our thoughts, actions, and overall attitude toward life, ultimately resulting in a significant, positive change in our lives.

#12 The Brain Power

Napoleon Hill likened the human brain to a radio signal-receiving device, suggesting that our brain functions as an instrument capable of receiving ideas and inspirations from the universe. This can happen if we align our emotional state with the frequency of our desired reality. In simpler terms, if we can evoke the emotions associated with accomplishing our goals through imagination or belief that we’ve already achieved them, we can receive the ideas needed to turn our dreams into reality.

Setting aside the terminology, from my understanding, Hill intended to convey that solutions to our problems are already in our vicinity. However, we often can’t find the key to access them because our current reality limits our perception. Therefore, we must work on our emotions to put ourselves in a mental state where our perception broadens, allowing us to see these solutions.

#13 Developing Your Sixth Sense – Intuition

This point is often overlooked, but it’s crucial to work on recognizing certain feelings that indicate what’s right for you. This principle encourages you to be able to recognize your inner voice or guidance that assists you in making decisions.

While some may find this concept irrelevant, developing intuitive awareness through practices like meditation can significantly aid in decision-making. Even simple mindfulness exercises can help individuals recognize certain feelings that guide them to take action or refrain from doing so.

Intuition isn’t a tangible thing that can be pinpointed; it’s subjective. Napoleon Hill believed that successful people trusted their gut feelings when making decisions. If you were to ask me, I would recommend the Silva Ultramind method course to train your ability to intuitively sense your inner guiding voice. It’s not a supernatural phenomenon but a practical way to understand how higher intelligence guides us in important decision-making situations.


So, these were the 13 principles that sum up Napoleon Hill’s book, whose modern edition is now available to purchase. In my opinion, the updated version of “Think and Grow Rich“(Amazon Affiliate link) is better because it is easier to comprehend and aligns with today’s world. However, if you prefer to delve into the original version, that’s your choice. I sincerely hope you enjoyed reading this post and found it valuable. What are your thoughts on these principles? Do you think I missed something important? Your feedback and responses help me in continuously updating this site with more content like this.

You can reach out via the contact page, and I’ll be more than happy to assist you with any of your issues.

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