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The Greatest Self-Help Books of All Time

greatest self help books for your BIGG SuccessOg Mandino is one of our favorite success authors ever. He was the President of Success Unlimited magazine (the predecessor of Success).

He’s most noted for The Greatest Salesman in the World. Our favorite is the much under-rated The Greatest Miracle in the World.

But in another book, The Greatest Secret in the World, he shared what he thought were the twelve greatest self-help books of all time. We thought we’d share with you in case you have time to do a little extra reading in the next couple of weeks.

Og Mandino’s 12 Greatest Success Books

  • The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin(Benjamin Franklin) 
  • Think and Grow Rich(Napoleon Hill) 
  • Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude(W. Clement Stone and Napoleon Hill) 
  • The Power of Faith(Louis Binstock) 
  • Your Greatest Power(J. Martin Kohe) 
  • Wake Up and Live(Dorothea Brande) 
  • I Dare You(William Danforth) 
  • Acres of Diamonds(Russell H. Conwell) 
  • The Ability to Love(Dr. Allan Fromme) 
  • How I Raised Myself From Failure to Success in Selling(Frank Bettger) 
  • As a Man Thinketh(James E. Allen) 
  • The Bible

It’s a great list but since it was published nearly forty years ago, there are some great books missing. Just one example – 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey.

We also note that The Richest Man in Babylon by George Samuel Clason didn’t make his list. It certainly makes ours.

And our favorite book by W. Clement Stone is The Success System That Never Fails although we like the one Og Mandino picked as well.

What book(s) would you add to the list?

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2 Keys to a Much Brighter Future

2 Keys to a Brighter Future and BIGG SuccesWhat is the key to being a BIGG success in your life, your career, and your business today?

At SOBCon, we heard a presentation by Tim Sanders, author of Love is the Killer App and its wonderful prequel, Today We Are Rich. During his presentation, he revealed the first key to a much brighter future:

Key #1

He said, “The future belongs to the learning, not the learned.”

A diploma isn’t the end of your education. It’s the beginning.

Neither is certification in your industry. That’s why many professionals are required to earn continuing education credits.

Don’t rest on your laurels; keep learning.

Learn from your successes. Learn from your mistakes. Learn from others.
Learn from books. Learn from podcasts. Learn from television shows.
Learn anywhere and everywhere you can.

But learning isn’t enough. It just sets you up for BIGG success.

Key #2

So we’ll turn to another great quote for the second key. It comes from the wonderful book, Success through a Positive Mental Attitude by Napoleon Hill and W. Clement Stone, two of the patriarchs of success literature. They said:

“Too often what we read and profess becomes a part of our libraries and vocabularies,
instead of becoming a part of our lives.”

We live and learn, but do we apply it?

The value of knowledge isn’t in the knowledge itself. It’s what you gain from using that knowledge that matters.

So make time for learning. But think before you learn. Ask yourself an incredibly important question:

Are you going to apply it? If not, don’t waste your time.

The power in learning comes from living it.

Until next time, here’s to your BIGG success!

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Are You Ready to be an Entrepreneur

business_timingAre entrepreneurs born or made? That was the question posed in a great article we saw in The Tennessean not long ago. The author concludes that entrepreneurs are born from experiences.

We agree. Entrepreneurs are not born. They are created from life experiences.

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Here in the U.S., we’re fortunate that our culture fosters entrepreneurship – probably more today than in generations past. It used to be that entrepreneurs were considered renegades. They were the people nobody would hire so they didn’t have a choice.

Now entrepreneurship is a lifestyle option that even the most qualified people make. So what motivates people to strike out on their own?

Career events

Franchisors often see a spike in demand in an area where layoffs are happening. Sometimes we don’t come to entrepreneurship; it comes to us.

It may be career frustration. Many people start their own business because they’re bored with their current occupation. Perhaps they feel like they’ve topped out. They’ve gone as far as they can in their current career so they decide to start something of their own.

Personal motives

Art Williams, the football coach who became a billionaire by building his own insurance business, said he was just “sick and tired of being sick and tired.”

W. Clement Stone, who built an insurance dynasty in the depths of The Great Depression, cites inspirational dissatisfaction as the source for many great achievements.

How do you know you’re ready to start?

Entrepreneuring is a process. Like any process, there has to be a starting point.

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georgeThe desire to be my own boss just consumed me. I had this feeling in my gut that I just couldn’t get rid of. I couldn’t stand not owning my own business. This desire just ate me up and spit me out every single day that I wasn’t in business for myself.

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marylynnFor me, it didn’t seem that the opportunities I needed in my corporate career were there any longer. I just couldn’t get where I wanted to be if I didn’t strike out on my own. It was a very, very difficult decision. It was incredibly emotional. But looking at my industry now, I’m glad I jumped into entrepreneurship when I did. r?

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The battle between two fears

We think it comes down to fear. The general population has an overwhelming fear of failure.

Entrepreneurs have a fear of not trying. They just have to know what would happen if they just tested their bigg idea.

You’re ready to be an entrepreneur when your fear of not trying overcomes your fear of failure.

You reach a point where inaction or delay is just not acceptable any longer. You have to go for it. You have to take your shot at bigg success!

How did you know you were ready to strike out on your own?

Share that with us by leaving a comment below, e-mailing us at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com or calling us at 888.455.BIGG (2444).

Thank you so much for reading our post today.

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Please join us next time when we’ll discuss the trap that keeps people from striking out on their own. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Think Like an Entrepreneur

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What’s Your Pick-Up Line?

We know … we know … pick-up lines are for social settings. However, a great opening line helps you professionally as well.

Listen to the show to hear our opening line. It doesn’t translate well to print. Mary-Lynn also shares the “cheesiest” pick-up line she ever heard.

The paperboy who became a billionaire
W. Clement Stone sold papers as a kid. He became a billionaire by selling insurance door-to-door. He documented what he learned in his great book, The Success System That Never Fails.

Picture this – you respond to a knock at your door. You open it to see a young man pointing to a list of names. You recognize quite a few of them – they’re your friends and neighbors. All this has happened within a split second as he begins to speak:

“I believe this will interest you also.”

He didn’t tell them his name or say, “Hello.” He didn’t ask them how they were doing or talk about the weather. No! He had tested … and tested … and tested.  He knew this was his best opening line. It was part of his success system.

Let’s look at three essential components to a great opening line.

#1 – Take the “you” view.
You have to think from the other person’s point of view if you want their attention. You’re probably familiar with the acronym WIIFM – what’s in it for me? Immediately address it because everybody is so busy.

#2 – Engage them.
W. Clement Stone’s opener is intriguing, isn’t it?

You ask yourself, “Why does he think that I’ll be interested? Why were my friends and neighbors interested?”

It’s a disturbing comment! That’s one way to engage people. You may also ask a disturbing question. “Ever notice” how Andy Rooney, with 60 Minutes, does this? Can you hear his voice?

One example of a disturbing question is to ask something that doesn’t ring true. We recently did a show / blog entitled Does It Pay Be Smart?

You say to yourself, “Well, of course it does! So why are they questioning it? What‘s the rest of the story?” Go ahead … check it out …. you know you want to!

You can also engage people by telling a short story that is humorous, gripping, or inspirational.

#3 – Appeal to their emotions.
Let’s go back to the W. Clement Stone story. Picture him at your door again. He delivers his opening line – “I believe this will interest you also” – as he points to his list of your friends and neighbors.

Do you start to worry that you might be left out? That fear of being excluded gets you into the conversation.

This great opening line worked wonders for retailers
Michael Gerber wrote the phenomenal book, The E-Myth Revisited. The “E” stands for entrepreneur, by the way. He talked about opening lines that sales clerks use.

When you walk into a store, if you’re greeted by a clerk, what do they say?

“May I help you?”

How do you respond? Perhaps something like …

“No, thanks … I’m just looking.”

Gerber advised his retail clients to change the question to:

“Have you visited our store before?”

That’s still a simple “yes” or “no”. However, if the customer said, “Yes”, the sales associate would respond:

“Let me show you our specials for regular customers.”

If the customer said, “No”, the clerk replied:

“Let me show you our specials for first-time customers.”

Doesn’t seem like much of a change, does it? The results were anything but small …

Sales increased 16 percent, on average!

What’s your opening line? What works for you? Leave your suggestions in our comment’s section.

Our Bigg Quote was made over 2,500 years ago by Pythagoras, the mathematician and philosopher.

“Do not say a little in many words but a great deal in a few.”

A great opening line will open doors for you. Next time, we’ll discuss how to tap into your hidden potential. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Related Post:

Timeless Principles: W.Clement Stone’s Success System

The Single Biggest Barrier To Your Success

Yesterday, we traveled to your future. To the life you dream about. We helped you visualize your future and challenged you to perform this visualization exercise every day for the next month.

Today, we’ll look at the single biggest barrier to your success. You may surprised to hear this.

The one big thing that stands between most people and success is fear.
We’re taught that fear is a good thing. And it can be. But it also can be counterproductive. One fear, in particular, keeps most people from achieving their dreams.

The most dangerous fear of all is the fear of failure.
This fear keeps more people from starting toward their dream, let alone actually accomplishing it, than anything else. As we mature, we get more self-conscious. We’re afraid we’ll be embarrassed. Afraid to be different. Afraid of being made fun of.

Plan to fail forward.
Successful people look at failure as an opportunity to learn. So the faster you fail, the faster you learn. Fail often enough and you have a leg up on all of those people who fear failure. Isn’t that most people?

Successful people are driven by the fear of not trying.
We got this idea from a great little book called I Can’t Accept Not Trying by Michael Jordan, the great basketball player. It’s a quick read that we highly recommend.

Have you ever been so fed up with something that you just had to do something about it? Of course, you have. All of us have!

W. Clement Stone, in his book The Success System That Never Fails, referred to this feeling as “inspirational dissatisfaction”. You can overcome your fear of failure by cultivating this fear of not trying. When you just can’t stand it any more. You have to find out if you can do it.

People who go for it reach a point where their fear of not trying exceeds their fear of failure. So they go for it. Some succeed beyond their wildest imaginations. Others fail forward. So they try again.

Our quote today is by Winston Churchill.

“Success is never final.
Failure is never fatal.
It’s courage that counts.”

Overcome your fears by living your dreams. What can you lose by trying?

Next time, we’ll tell the story on storytelling. How and why to tell a story well.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Live and Learn and Live

By Bigg Success Staff
04-24-08

Timeless Principles

books 

“Too often what we read and profess becomes a part of our libraries and vocabularies, instead of becoming a part of our lives.”

This quote comes from the book Success through a Positive Mental Attitude, written by Napoleon Hill and W. Clement Stone, two of the greatest success authors of all time.

We live and learn, but do we apply it?

The value of knowledge isn’t in the knowledge itself. It’s what you gain from using that knowledge that matters.

So think about it the next time you take the time to learn anything. Are you going to apply it? If not, don’t waste your time.

The power in learning comes from living it. 

Find out when we post new articles. Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly.

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

More Timeless Principles

“Leadership is Action, Not Position”

Happiness is Freedom to Spend Your Time How You Want

Make It a Double

Who’s Kicking Your Cat?

The Illusion Of Wealth

(Image by nkzs)

W.Clement Stone’s Success System

By Bigg Success Staff
December 06, 2007

Timeless Principles

W. Clement Stone was a student of success. This paper boy eventually became the head of a billion dollar insurance company. Along the way, he overcame extreme poverty, a tough neighborhood, the loss of his father at the age of three, and many other obstacles.

In his great book, The Success System That Never Fails, he describes the three things he learned as a frightened six-year old boy selling newspapers. These three things propelled him to success.

3-Step Success Formula

  • Inspiration to action
  • What motivates you? Not because you have to do something, but because you want to do it. Are you unhappy with your current situation? Then change it by changing yourself. Do you want more out of your life? Find your passion and pursue it relentlessly.Stone opens the book by writing about his days as a paperboy. He was motivated to do well because he needed the money. He had invested all of his savings in newspapers. Newspapers that would be worthless at the end of the day. He had to sell them. So he kept pushing.

  • Know-how
  • Know-how is knowledge applied successfully. You learn your craft by trying again and again. Every time you try, you either succeed or fail. Either way, you learn. When you succeed, you know what to do the next time. When you fail, you learn what not to do next time.Stone learned that patrons of a corner diner would buy papers to read while they ate their dinners. However, the owner of the restaurant didn’t like this child peddling papers in his place. He kept kicking Stone out. Stone would sneak back in and sell papers. He learned to be persistent.

  • Activity knowledge
  • It’s important to learn from your own successes and failures. It’s even better if you can learn from the successes and failures of others. Get to know your product. Learn the methods that have and haven’t worked for others.Stone knew what to say, because he watched other successful paper boys shouting out the day’s headlines to get their customers’ attentions.

Stone promises a lot, even in the title to this book. He also promises that his system will work if you work his system. What’s your inspiration to action right now?

(Image of sprinter by Gio JL )