Here’s What You Will Find on This Page

  • Four videos about success based on W. Clement Stone quotes.
  • The quotes I used for each video.
  • A collection of W. Clement Stone quotes.
  • Some links with additional W. Clement Stone resources.
  • A short bio about W. Clement Stone.
  • A few personal observations about why I like W. Clement Stone, what I learned from him, and why I included his work in this website.

Who is W. Clement Stone?

A true Horatio Alger success story, W. Clement Stone (May 4, 1902– September 3, 2002) was born into meager circumstances on the south side of Chicago, Illinois. He rose to become one of America’s wealthiest entrepreneurs.

Stone was also a philanthropist. He donated an estimated $275,000,000 to worthy causes.

William Clement Stone was raised by his mother. His father died when the future success figure was 3 and left mother and son in dire straits due to gambling debts.

Stone sold newspapers from the age of six. A gutsy sort from even this tender age, he ventured into restaurants to sell his papers.

When the owners threw him out, patrons said to leave him alone and bought his papers. All were impressed with his charm and persistence.

By 13, Stone ran his own newsstand. By 16, he discovered his calling in the insurance business.

His mother opened an insurance agency in Detroit. Stone discovered he had a knack for cold calling and selling casualty insurance.

In 1922, he moved back to his hometown of Chicago and set up his own agency. He became “W. Clement Stone” when someone pointed out that there were enough “William Stone’s” in the world and “W. Clement Stone” would stand out on a building directory.

In 1923, Stone married Jesse Verna Tarson. They were married 79 years and had three children.

One day, Stone sold 122 policies and realized that he need to build a sales organization. This he did with characteristic focus, drive, and enthusiasm.

By 1930, he had over 1,000 agents. That number grew to over 3,500 despite the Great Depression.

Over the decades, Stone mastered the art of recruiting, training, and inspiring sales representatives. Many seekers of success know W. Clement Stone as the tireless and enthusiastic exponent of “PMA” (Positive Mental Attitude).

His works include “Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude” (co-authored with Napoleon Hill) and “The Success System that Never Fails” (in which he relates his life story).

From 1952-1962, Stone partnered with Napoleon Hill of “Think and Grow Rich” fame. Hill taught his “Philosophy of Personal Achievement” with Stone’s backing.

In 1954, Stone published “Success Unlimited” magazine. He eventually hired Og Mandino as the president and editor. This was the forerunner of today’s “Success” magazine.

In 1979, Stone’s Combined Insurance Company of America was worth over a billion dollars. He started the company with his savings of $100.

At this writing, Norman Stone oversees the Stone Foundation. He continues his father’s legacy of philanthropy.

Why I Like W. Clement Stone, What I Learned from Him, and Why I Included Him in this Website

I like W. Clement Stone because his life demonstrates the profound effect of simple ideas. Stone transformed the simple ideas of a Positive Mental Attitude, self-suggestion, definiteness of purpose, and a burning desire into a fortune.

You won’t find anything complicated in W. Clement Stone’s writings. His great virtue was putting his philosophy in action with unremitting effort and unflagging enthusiasm.

As a result, he is the wealthiest of my success experts. Arguably, he had as great an impact as any because he spent time and money promoting success ideas.

Here’s what I learned from W. Clement Stone: Find a narrow focus and get very good at this one thing.

At a time when other insurance agencies were diversifying, Stone sold a narrow line of low-priced policies. They were simple to explain and cost only $3.

He practiced and practiced until he honed his sales pitch to near perfection. Then he gained great skill in recruiting and training sales representatives.

He talks about this in “The Success System that Never Fails” videos. He was very focused. He recognized his mission and stayed with it to the exclusion of other opportunities.

He continued to refine his methods and presentation over the years. And it paid off handsomely.

I included W. Clement Stone in this website because his style and simplicity is that of a businessman and not a success author. After all, he was primarily the former and not the latter.

Therefore, in my view, you get a “stripped down, bare-bones” overview of success ideas that work. His works express the essentials without the flourish and embellishments that a wordsmith might bring to the task.

This is true in our day as well. Donald Trump and Sir Richard Branson are modern-day examples.

Stone, like his contemporary counterparts, “cuts to the chase.” And that’s one very important reason why he made so much money.

Video #1 – W. Clement Stone Quotes: A Positive Mental Attitude

In the first video, I present four W. Clement Stone quotes that outline his thoughts about the power of the mind. Although this is a subject with which I’m sure you are familiar, we cannot be reminded too often about how powerful the mind is.

Stone clearly understood the principles of success and his life was a testament to this understanding. This is why his quotes are more than aphorisms and platitudes. They were the foundation of his fortune and, likely, the foundation of the fortunes of many others.

Here are the quotes in this video:

  • Bondage is…subjection to external influences and internal negative thoughts and attitudes.
  • Your most precious, valued possessions and your greatest powers are invisible and intangible. No one can take them. You, and you alone, can give them.
  • Self-suggestion makes you master of yourself.
  • Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.

 

Video #2 – W. Clement Stone Quotes: Definiteness of Purpose

If you know what you want, then you can charge your mind with the task of getting it for you. Stone knew the power of definiteness of purpose and a clearly-stated objective.

You start on the road to success as soon as you clearly define where you are going and take action.

Here are the quotes in this video:

  • When you discover your mission, you will feel its demand. It will fill you with enthusiasm and a burning desire to get to work on it.
  • All personal achievement starts in the mind of the individual. Your personal achievement starts in your mind. The first step is to know exactly what your problem, goal, or desire is.
  • Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement
  • You. too, can determine what you want. You can decide on your major objectives, targets, aims, and destination.

 

Video #3 – W. Clement Stone Quotes: Enthusiasm Overcomes Adversity

Boundless enthusiasm in the face of adversity was a hallmark of W. Clement Stone. Like any high achiever, he welcomed adversity, knowing that he could turn it into opportunity.

This is success thinking at its highest and most practical because the more adversity you face, the greater success you will achieve through a Positive Mental Attitude.

Here are the quotes in this video:

  • We have a problem. Congratulations. But it’s a tough problem. Then double congratulations.
  • To solve a problem or to reach a goal, you don’t need to know all the answers in advance. But you must have a clear idea of the problem or the goal you want to reach.
  • Every great man, every successful man, no matter what the field of endeavor, has known the magic that lies in these words: every adversity has the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit.
  • I think there is something, more important than believing: Action! The world is full of dreamers, there aren’t enough who will move ahead and begin to take concrete steps to actualize their vision.
  • Thinking will not overcome fear but action will.

 

Video #4 – W. Clement Stone Quotes: Power of Persistence

In these four W. Clement Stone quotes, I outline the true meaning and benefit of persistence. You cannot join the ranks of high achievers without persistence. Here’s why and what persistence does for you that makes this quality indispensable.

Here are the quotes in this video:

  • Success is achieved and maintained by those who try and keep trying.
  • Try, try, try, and keep on trying is the rule that must be followed to become an expert in anything.
  • Keep your mind on your objective, and persist until you succeed. Study, think and plan.
  • Like success, failure is many things to many people. With Positive Mental Attitude, failure is a learning experience, a rung on the ladder, a plateau at which to get your thoughts in order and prepare to try again.

W. Clement Stone Quotes

Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star.

All personal achievement starts in the mind of the individual. Your personal achievement starts in your mind. The first step is to know exactly what your problem, goal or desire is.

Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement.

Every great man, every successful man, no matter what the field of endeavor, has known the magic that lies in these words: every adversity has the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit.

Everyone who achieves success in a great venture, solves each problem as they came to it. They helped themselves. And they were helped through powers known and unknown to them at the time they set out on their voyage. They keep going regardless of the obstacles they met.

Like success, failure is many things to many people. With Positive Mental Attitude, failure is a learning experience, a rung on the ladder, a plateau at which to get your thoughts in order and prepare to try again.

Regardless of who you are or what you have been, you can be what you want to be.

There is little difference in people, but that little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative.

When you do the wrong thing, knowing it is wrong, you do so because you haven’t developed the habit of effectively controlling or neutralizing strong inner urges that tempt you, or because you have established the wrong habit and don’t know how to eliminate them effectively.

You are a product of your environment. So choose the environment that will best develop you toward your objective. Analyze your life in terms of its environment. Are the things around you helping you toward success – or are they holding you back?

Success is achieved and maintained by those who try and keep trying.

Self-suggestion makes you master of yourself.

There’s a great joy in my giving. It’s thrilling. It’s exhilarating. It’s important to be a part of sharing. It is my love. It is my joy.

Tell everyone what you want to do and someone will want to help you do it.

Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance.

We have a problem. Congratulations. But it’s a tough problem. Then double congratulations.

When you discover your mission, you will feel its demand. It will fill you with enthusiasm and a burning desire to get to work on it.

You always do what you want to do. This is true with every act. You may say that you had to do something, or that you were forced to, but actually, whatever you do, you do by choice. Only you have the power to choose for yourself.

Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve

Your most precious, valued possessions and your greatest powers are invisible and intangible. No one can take them. You, and you alone, can give them.

Be careful the environment you choose for it will shape you; be careful the friends you choose for you will become like them.

Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.

Keep your mind on your objective, and persist until you succeed. Study, think and plan.

Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman – not the attitude of the prospect.

Prayer is man’s greatest power!

Thinking will not overcome fear but action will.

When we direct our thoughts properly, we can control our emotions.

If there is something to gain and nothing to lose by asking, by all means ask!

If you employed study, thinking, and planning time daily, you could develop and use the power that can change the course of your destiny.

I think there is something, more important than believing: Action! The world is full of dreamers, there aren’t enough who will move ahead and begin to take concrete steps to actualize their vision.

To solve a problem or to reach a goal, you don’t need to know all the answers in advance. But you must have a clear idea of the problem or the goal you want to reach.

You. too, can determine what you want. You can decide on your major objectives, targets, aims, and destination.

If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.

So many fail because they don’t get started – they don’t go. They don’t overcome inertia. They don’t begin.

Try, try, try, and keep on trying is the rule that must be followed to become an expert in anything.

No matter how carefully you plan your goals, they will never be more than pipe dreams unless you pursue them with gusto.

Events tend to recur in cycles…

The natural law of inertia: Matter will remain at rest or continue in uniform motion in the same straight line unless acted upon by some external force.

Give a smile to everyone you meet (smile with your eyes) and you’ll smile and receive smiles.

Bondage is…subjection to external influences and internal negative thoughts and attitudes.

You affect your subconscious mind by verbal repetition.

I feel happy! I feel healthy! I feel ter-r-r-ific!

What’s a few million dollars? Everything’s relative.

All I want to do is change the world.

When you discover your mission, you will feel its demand. It will fill you with enthusiasm and a burning desire to get to work on it.

You are called a “square peg in a round hole” when you work or engage in activities that do not come naturally, and that are inwardly repellent. In such an unhappy situation you can change your position and place ourselves find in an environment that is pleasing to you.

The first great advantage is that your subconscious mind begins to work under a universal law: “What the mind of man can conceive and believe- the mind can achieve.” Because you visualize your intended destination, your subconscious mind is affected by this self-suggestion. It goes to work to help you get there.

Because you know what you want, there is a tendency for you to try to get on the right track and head in the right direction. You get into action.

Work now becomes fun. You are motivated to pay the price. You budget your time and money. You study, think, and plan. The more you think about your goals, the more enthusiastic you become. And with enthusiasm your desire turns into a burning desire.

You become alerted to opportunities that will help you achieve your objectives as they present themselves in your everyday experiences. because you know what you want, you are more likely to recognize these opportunities.

Here Are Some W. Clement Stone Links:

W. Clement Stone Bio

More W. Clement Stone Bio Info

W. Clement Stone Quotes

PDF with W. Clement Stone Last Interview

Be Generous! by W. Clement Stone

Horatio Alger

“Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude”

 

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