Napoleon Hill Story.- Self Confidence

" One day a homeless man presented himself at my office and asked for an interview. As I looked up from my work and greeted him, he said, "I have come here to see the man who wrote this little book," and he removed from his pocket a copy of a book entitled Self-Confidence, Which I had written many years previously. :It must have been the hand of fate," he continued, "that slipped this book into my pocket yesterday afternoon, because I was about ready to go out there and punch a hole in Lake Michigan. I had about come to the conclusion that everything and everybody, including god, had it in for me, until I read this book and it gave me a new viewpoint and brought me the courage and hope that sustained through the night.I made up my mind that if I could see the man who wrote this book he could help me get on my feet gain. Now I am here and I would like to know what you can do for a man like me."
While he was speaking I had been studying him from head to foot and I am frank to admit that down deep in my heart I did not believe there was anything I could do for him, but I did not wish to tell him so. The glassy stare in his eyes, the lines of discouragement in his face, the posture of his body, the tend days' growth of beard on his face, the nervous manner about this man all conveyed to me the impression he was hopeless, but I did not have the heart to tell him.
So I asked him to sit down and tell me his whole story. I asked him to perfectly frank and tell me, as nearly as possible, just what had brought him down to the ragged edge of life. I promised him that after I heard his entire story I would then tell him whether or not I could be of service to him. He related his story, in lengthy detail, the sum and substance of which was this: He had invested in entire fortune in a small manufacturing business. When the world war began in 1914, it was impossible for him to get the raw materials necessary for the operation of his factory, and he therefore failed. The loss of his money broke his heart and so disturbed his mind that he left his wife and children and went to live on the streets. He had actually brooded over his loss until he reached the point at which he was contemplating suicide.
After he had finished his story, I said to him: " I have listened to you with a great deal of interest, and I wish that there was something I could do to help you. But there is absolutely nothing.
He became as pale as he will be when he is laid way in a coffin. He settled back in his chair and dropped his chin on his chest as much as to say, "that settles it." I waited for a few seconds, then said:
"While there is nothing I can do for you, there is a man in this building to whom I will introduce you, if you wish, who can help you regain your lost fortune and put you back on your feed again."These words had barely fallen from my lips when he jumped up, grabbed me by the hands, and said, "For God's sake lead me to this man."
It was encouraging to note that he has asked this "for god's sake." This indicated that there was still a spark of hope within him, so I took him by the arm and led him out into the laboratory where my psychological tests in character analysis were conducted, and stood with him in front of what looked to be a curtain over a door. I pulled the curtain aside and uncovered a tall mirror in which he saw himself from head to foot. Pointing my finger at the glass, I said:
"There stands the man to whom I promised to introduce you. He is the only man in this world who can put you back on your feet again. And unless you sit down and become acquainted with that man, as you never became acquainted with him before, you might just as well go on over and 'punch a hole' in Lake Michigan, because you will be of no value to yourself or to the world until you know this man better."
He stepped over to the glass, rubbed his hands over his bearded face, studied himself from head to foot for a few moments, then stepped back, dropped his head, and began to weep. I knew that the lesson had been driven home, so I led him back to the elevator and sent him on his way. I never expected to see him again, and I doubted that the lesson would be sufficient to help him regain his place in the world, because he seemed too far gone for redemption. He seemed to be not only down, but almost out.
A few days later I met this man on the street. His transformation had been so complete that I hardly recognized him. He was walking briskly, with his head tilted back. That old, shifting , nervous posture of his body was gone. He was dressed in new clothes from head to foot. He looked prosperous and he felt prosperous. He stopped me and related what had happened to bring about his rapid transformation from a state of abject failure to one of hope and promise.
"I was just on my way to your office, " he explained, "to bring you the good news. I went out the very day that I was in your office, a down and out tramp, and despite my appearance I sold myself at a salary of $3,000 a year. Think of it, man $3,000 a year! And my employer advanced me money enough to buy some new clothes, as you can see for yourself. He also advanced me some money to send home to my family, and I am once more on the road to success. It seems like a dream when I think that only a few days ago I had lost hope and faith and courage, and was actually contemplating suicide.
"I was coming to tell you that one of these days, when you are least expecting me, I will pay you another visit, and when I do I will be a successful man. I will bring with me a blank check, signed and made payable to you, and you may fill in the amount because you have saved me from myself by introducing me to myself- that self I never knew until you stood me in front of that mirror and ointed out the real me"
As he turned and departed into the crowded streets of Chicago, I saw, for the first time in my life, what strength and power and possibility lie hidden in the mind of the person who had never discovered the value of self -reliance. Then and there I made up my mind that I, too, would stand in front of that same mirror and point an accusing finger at myself for not having discovered the lesson that I had helped another to learn. I did stand before that same mirror. And as I did so, I then and there fixed in my mind, as my definite purpose in life, The determination to help men and women discover the forces that lie sleeping within them. The book you hold in your hands is evidence that my definite purpose is being carried out.
The man whose story I have related here is now the president of one of the largest and most successful concerns of its kind in America, with a business that extends from coast to coast and from Canada to Mexico.

From the Book The Law of Success.