Wishes Without Will-Power

“Almost everybody has wishes, but very few people resolutely set out to get what they want. Many a young person sits in a small bedroom and thinks:- “Why cannot I have the pleasures that others have? Why cannot I, too, have money to spend, not merely a few shillings a week? Why do some people have all the luck?”

Now it is a good thing for people to have such questions in their minds. Wishes are like seeds. Every succesful career started with wishes. But you cannot take these wishes to the bank and cash them, nothing as easy as that.

Seeds are no good till you plant them, and wishes are no good till you form a strong purpose in your mind to get what you want.

First comes the wishes. Then comes will-power. Most people lack will-power, I must say that it is a hard thing to get. The way to get it is to set out to do something, or study something or improve something. There you have, in a sentence: the secrete of every permanent success.

By doing, studying and improving: every worthwhile result has been obtained. This holds true for the young man of twenty in a small job, as for the millionare of sixty as well.

As soon as the young man has set out to do half a dozen things, and has done them, then he has made his will-power stronger. And a feeling of self-confidence springs up in his mind. This drives ot the feelings of self-pity and depression. He becomes ambitious. He finds he can do more than the thought he could do.

He begins to appreciate his own abilities. He sets himself harder tasks. He begins to get the things he wants. But the point is that wishes alone will not bring either success or happiness, They only bring misery to those who have no ‘pluck’.

It is will-power and perseverance that make the dreams come true – not always, but often. Few men get all they want, but any one of us can, at least, get quite a few things. We can, if we have the courage to pay the price.

Herbert N. Casson’s
‘Business Man’s Manual’
Jan, 1936