Napoleon Hill "Think and Grow Rich" #5 A Pleasing Personality

Uploaded by PrimeauProductions on 01.05.2009

I’m happy to be with you for our fifth visit, and our subject is a pleasing personality.
Your personality determines whether people are attracted to you or shy away from you.
It is the show wind with which you display your character to the world and it is the
one thing which distinguishes you from all other human beings. It is your trademark by
which people recognize you. And it is the thing which determines your success or failure
in selling yourself through life. Therefore you should see your personality just as others
see it, so you may improve it where it needs improvement. Your personality consists of
more than thirty different factors, traits and characteristics. Because of the limit
of time I can devote to this visit with you, I can mention only the more important of your
traits of personality. But before I begin to describe to you these traits, I want you
to know that every trait which goes into your personality is under your control and you
can improve it so it will be whatever you want it to be.
Let us start with the most important trait of your personality, your mental attitude.
This is a trait with which you attract people to you and cause them to like you or repel
them and cause them to dislike you. Your mental attitude must be positive if you attract people
to you. “How do other people know whether your mental attitude is positive or negative?”
you may ask. Well, the answer is easy. First of all, other people tune in and pick up your
mental attitude by telepathy without your saying a word or making a move. But there
are other ways they can tell whether your mental attitude is negative or positive. You
disclose this information by the tone of your voice, whether it is pleasant or harsh, by
the expression on your face, whether it is soft and pleasing or harsh and scowling, by
the courtesy and consideration you show other people, or the lack of these. So you see,
there is no escape from revealing to others the exact nature of your personality.
The next most important trait of your personality consists of your flexibility of your mental
attitude or your lack of it. If you have flexibility, you adjust yourself to all the circumstances
in your relations with others, without losing your composure or allowing yourself to become
irritable or angry. Just remember if you have flexibility of your mental attitude it will
be impossible for anyone to make you angry or to irritate you without your consent or
cooperation. Now this is worth knowing, isn’t it? You cannot control the actions of other
people which might justify your becoming irritated by them but you can control your reaction
to all such circumstances by exercising your trait of flexibility. And you will observe
that all people in the higher brackets of success have this flexibility and they do
control their reaction to the influences of other people.
The third most important trait of the pleasing personality is the ability to control and
direct your emotion of enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is one of the means by which you can give
forcefulness to your words. But you must be able to turn it on and off at will, as definitely
as you can turn on and off water at the spigot. Uncontrolled enthusiasm often makes people
bore some. It also may open wide the window to ones mind through which other people may
enter and influence one in ways he does not wish to be influenced.
The fourth most important trait of a pleasing personality is a sincerity of purpose. The
person who is not sincere in all relationships with others is soon detected and rejected,
because no one is attracted to the person who thus endeavors to deceive others. Sincerity
is one quality of character which cannot be successfully faked, not even by the most astute
rascal or the most efficient actor, because insincerity evermore carries with it some
warning sign which other people recognize. You have only to go back into your own experience
with insincere people to prove the truth of what I have stated. There are 26 other important
traits which give one a pleasing personality, but I do not have time to give them to you
in this visit. Now let us turn our attention to some of the
common habits which destroy a pleasing personality. Please check yourself as I describe these
negative habits and you may make discoveries about yourself sufficient to enable you to
rebuild your entire personality, so it will become a master salesman in your behalf. One,
one of the most destructive habits which make ones personality objectionable is that of
breaking in and running away with the conversation when others are speaking. And two, sarcasm
expressed by insinuations and wisecracks, which are not so wise, is nearly head of the
list which give one a negative personality. And third, vanity expressed by either words
or actions is sure to make one unpopular. And four, indifference in listening while
others are speaking is sure to be noticed and resented. It is more profitable to be
a good listener than it is to be a good talker because one is always apt to learn something
while listening to others but never learns anything from hearing himself talk. Five,
the attempt to flatter where flattery is obviously not deserved will bring quick resentment from
others. Also, it will put them on notice, if they are wise, that the flatterer wants
something he perhaps should not get. And six, the habit of finding fault with the world
at large and people in general is never a popular habit. And it is no part of a pleasing
personality. It is far better to direct conversation to the circumstances and things which are
right than to complain of those which one believes to be wrong. And seven, one of the
very worst habits which destroy a pleasing personality is that of openly and directly
challenging those with whom one may not agree, where there is no obvious reason for doing
so, except the desire to be on the opposite side. And eight, the habit of volunteering
unsolicited advice to others who have not requested it can make one an intolerable bore.
Free advice is usually to be considered worth just what it costs, which is nothing but the
patience with which to listen to it. And nine, the habit of speaking of ones physical ailments.
Worry of personal problems may be tolerated by others but this habit will never make one
welcome or pleasing. If you wish to make yourself welcome in your relations with others, manage
to talk about things which interest and concern those to whom you are speaking. You will never
be bore some to the person to whom you are speaking of him and the things which interest
him, a truth which all master salesmen understand and respect. And ten, the habit of endeavoring
to convey an impression of superiority through the use of words and topics unfamiliar to
others is a surefire destroyer of popularity. If you wish to sell yourself to others successfully,
you must negotiate with them on their own level, trough terms which they understand.
And eleven, envy of those who are successful is a trait which destroys a pleasing personality.
The truly great men and women have all been known to be generous, sympathetic and joyous
in connection with the good fortunes of others. And twelve, carelessness in body posture and
clothing never attracts but always repels others. Clothes make not the man as has been
said, but they surely give him a mighty good start if they are appropriate and properly
worn. Carelessness in body carriage and posture is immediately traceable to a negative mental
attitude. If you are free from these twelve common habits which make one unpopular, you
probably have a very pleasing personality. There are five other negative habits which
make one unpopular which I have not had the time to mention.
Remember this, please, if you are not liked by other people you may be sure there is a
reason which you can detect and correct. It is unnatural for one person to dislike another
without a cause. Before you can make full use of the master key to success, you will
need to make your personality pleasing. This will require courage on your part and honesty
with yourself. A pleasing personality stands near the head of the list of assets which
make one truly rich. I was impressed with this truth many years ago when I heard Andrew
Carnegie say that he paid his right hand mastermind ally, Charles M Schwab, $75,000 a year for
the services he rendered directly, but he often gave Mr. Schwab a bonus at the end of
the year of $1,000,000 for the influence he exerted on his associate workers because of
his pleasing personality. You see, therefore, Andrew Carnegie who has been said to have
been the greatest judge of man this nation has ever known, placed a value on a pleasing
personality of more than ten times as much as he valued the personal services of his
right hand man. Perhaps this will give you a clue that will help you up the market value
of your personality. And now, until we meet again, may I wish you health, wealth, and
piece of mind.