Pushing To The Front

Orison Swett Marden

A good system shortens the road to the goal. – Orison Swett Marden

I just re-read Orison Swett Marden’s best-selling book Pushing to the Front. The original was published in 1894, and it is quite lengthy at 800+ pages and 70 Chapters.

Nevertheless, do not let the age of this volume fool you as it still has some valuable nuggets! Some of the material is a little dated; however, the lessons still resonate today. It certainly inspired many people around the beginning of the 20th century. Theodore Roosevelt, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, and J.C. Penny all declared this one self-development book had profoundly influenced them.

Here are some wisdom quotes from Orison Swett Marden:

  • “Persistency is to talent what steam is to the engine. It is the driving force by which the machine accomplishes the work for which it was intended. A great deal of persistency, with a very little talent, can be counted on to go farther than a great deal of talent without persistency.”
  • “He who improves an opportunity sows a seed which will yield fruit in opportunity for himself and others. Everyone who has labored honestly in the past has aided to place knowledge and comfort within the reach of a constantly increasing number.”
  • “The rolling stone gathers no moss. The persistent tortoise outruns the swift but fickle hare. An hour a day for twelve years more than equals the time given to study in a four years’ course at a high school. The reading and re-reading of a single volume has been the making of many a man.“
  • “Life pulsates with chances. They may not be dramatic or great, but they are important to him who would get on in the world.”
  • “Go-at-it-iveness is the first requisite for success. Stick-to-it-iveness is the second. Under ordinary circumstances, and with practical common sense to guide him, one who has these requisites will not fail.“
  • “As a rule, what the heart longs for the head and the hands may attain.”