Earl Nightingale’s The Strangest Secret is an old book with some timeless wisdom. Usually I’m not a fan of self-improvement type books (as self-improvement is generally understood) but the information contained within The Strangest Secret is much more than your typical self-improvement book. In The Strangest Secret Earl talks about what it takes to succeed in any endeavor and just as importantly why most don’t succeed.
The Strangest Secret started out as an audio recording and then went to a video version and now is in print. The audio is pretty old and the quality is a bit sketchy here and there but it’s well worth listening to (over and over again). You can find it on YouTube. However I would also recommend having this book in your collection to peruse when you see fit and to be able to pass down to further generations (something that can be done with a YouTube video).
The book is pretty short and can be read in one sitting. However it’s a book that you’ll want to read over and over again because you’ll gain new knowledge and wisdom every time that you do so. I’ve read many books that imitate The Strangest Secret and do a poor job of doing so (read every self-help/success book of the past 20 years). Here you’re getting the original real deal.
To start the book out Earl talks about the golden age that we live in. How we have a ton of opportunity available to us. And he is right. It’s common to really beat down on the age we live in (I do it often too) and while there are many things wrong with it that we should be aware of there are also many good things as well. We have vast opportunity and resources at our fingertips and would be fools to not make use of them.
Earl talks how despite living in this time of plenty of 100 people if you ask them how many will be successful when they’re in highschool just about all of them will say yes. Earl lived in a time that was a bit more optimistic then our own but nevertheless most have high hopes for their future. But the reality is a lot different from the dreams that they have for themselves.
Earl states “By the age of 65, only one will be rich, four will be financially independent, 41 will still be working, and 54 will be broke” so that means of the one hundred only five really make it. Earl then goes on to question why exactly is this, why is it that so many live unfulfilled and unsuccessful lives?
The Definition Of Success
Earl defines success as “the progressive realization of a worthy goal” meaning the gradual accomplishment of a worthy goal. Let’s take an arbitrary example. Let’s say you’re a lumberjack and that for every tree you cut down you get X amount of dollars. Now let’s say to feed your family you have to cut down ten trees a day. Now let’s say you want to do more than feed your family, you want to be able to improve both their and your lot in life so you decide to aim to cut down twenty trees a day.
Every tree you cut down would be a success and here’s why. because every tree you cut down would be part of that progressive realization of a worthy goal. Each tree would get you closer to meeting your goal and giving your family the life that you want for them and that you want for yourself. You’d be successful in meeting your goal everyday. And daily successes compounded end up making successful lives.
Earl also quotes Rollo May who was a distinguished psychiatrist of Earl’s time. Rollo states “the opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice -it is conformity” while I can’t say I agree with Rollo 100% there is certainly something to be said for that quote. Looking above it is obvious that what is proscribed to the majority does not end up in success and this was years ago.
The Strangest Secret
So just what is the strangest secret in the world, the secret that the successful know and have used to achieve success and that the unsuccessful do not know? It is this “Here is the key to success, and, the key to failure. “We become what we think about””. That is what separates the successful from the unsuccessful. The thoughts that go on in our head have a huge impact on where we end up.
The man who is constantly knocking himself down and who thinks he can’t do anything right won’t end up doing anything right and get no where because of that. A man who’s mind is working against him will never get far and never accomplish much. Mind is after all the master and without mastering it we won’t get the life that we want.
The Strangest Secret In The World
The Strangest Secret In The World contains much more wisdom on getting the most out of life and what it is that makes one successful or unsuccessful. You can find the paperback on Amazon for 3$ and it’s one hundred times better then the majority of self-improvement books out there especially the newest crop of them.