By Dan LeFave
I am getting eaten alive by mosquitos in Jamaica thanks to Napoleon Hill and my mentor Bob Proctor. It’s pitch dark and I am on a terrace pacing up and down, reading by the light of my laptop while swatting mosquitos. I am on vacation with my family, but I have this little distraction called persistence.
In 1996, I picked up a copy of Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. I read it once but put it aside. Fifteen years later in Los Angeles, Bob Proctor challenged me and a room full of hopeful coaches and trainers to read the persistence chapter from Hill’s book for 30 days straight. I was paired up with two other coaches and we prepared to get started. We divided up the chapter in bite-size chunks of about two pages each and committed to getting on a daily call to read.
I flew home full of excitement that I was going to learn from one of the greatest thinkers and teachers of our time. We began reading and only a few days later I ran into my first challenge to keep this habit going.
I went on vacation with my wife and two boys and was totally distracted. However, because of my strong nature to commit and complete challenges, I figured out how to fit in reading late at night after my boys went to sleep. I remember reading by the light of my laptop pacing up and down on a terrace trying to keep the mosquitos away.
A couple of weeks later, I returned home, and we continued our daily routine of reading “persistence” consistently. We read this chapter for 30 days and developed a rhythm. Then we did something that no other group that Bob put together even considered. In fact, no other reading group even lasted 30 days. We decided to read the following chapter in Napoleon’s book. And we continued to read chapter after chapter for 30 days, never stopping, without excuses.
We finished reading the entire book several months later and decided that we liked it so much that we started again at the beginning. Month after month we kept going strong, reading every day. No excuses. Consistently reading and studying one of the greatest books ever written on success and human potential.
If one of us had a challenge making it on the call, we simply co-ordinated and found another time. Unfortunately, we lost one member due to her father becoming ill and passing away. But that didn’t deter us. The other two of us kept going every day through vacations, holidays, illnesses, thick and thin reading every day regardless of circumstances. It didn’t even matter if I was on the other side of the planet.
Mark and I have been reading and studying the world’s greatest teachers for more than 2,300 days. We started with the “persistence” chapter and we are living proof of Napoleon’s powerful message of almost a century ago.
The way to persist and win in life and business is to commit and be consistent without any excuses. Reasons are the same thing as excuses and cause us to follow a path that appears to be easy. However, what seems to be the easy way is the hardest way because there isn’t any growth. It leads to a self-imposed caged life.
The price we pay for being persistent is that we make our reading mastermind a priority over other things like family time. However, what we gain is far more valuable, because consistent practices lead to a constant flow of successes. How many people do you know who would pursue reading and studying great thinkers repetitiously for years?
Study successful business leaders and you’ll discover their unique ability to consistently and persistently do certain practices that drive their lives forward. They are living a full life and writing their story by persisting in their practices without exception. They carve out time in their life to study and learn so that they can grow and expand. It’s not an option, it’s a necessity for fast-moving leaders.
Would you like to experiment and begin a persistent practice of studying and learning from great leaders? If yes, pick a reliable mastermind partner and a good book that you want to study and know and get started. You need to choose a book that you want to understand at a deep level because it will keep you motivated and will leave you feeling more intelligent.
The best thing I receive from reading daily like this is experiential opportunities. Since I am focusing my attention repetitively on specific information, I attract and experience events in my life that allow me to learn and teach more about the book. Think and Grow Rich has become part of me and is impacting my life and the lives of people that I share it with. Now it’s your turn!