by Herbert W. Armstrong
This booklet is not to be sold.
It is a free educational service
in the public interest.
© 1961, 1968, 1972, 1974, 2003, 2008
Philadelphia Church of God
All Rights Reserved
Printed in the United States of America
Why are only the very few—women
as well as men—successful in life?
Just what is success?
Here is the surprising answer to life’s most
difficult problem, proving that no human
need ever become a failure!
All who have succeeded have
followed these seven laws!
The only way to success is not a copy-
righted formula being sold for a price. You
can’t buy it! The price is your own applica-
tion of the seven existing laws.
Did it ever occur to you that there
might be a reason why so many people
make a failure of life? Not only men and
career women, but wives and mothers too!
Are you one who is wrestling with the problem of “making
ends meet”? Nearly all of us are. This problem need not mean
failure—yet it often leads to it.
It is a fact—the vast majority do wind up failures. Yet none
Take a look at the facts in the world.
I s T H I s s u c c e s s ?
Every two minutes someone in the United States attempts
suicide. Each day nearly 85 persons succeed—but is that suc-
cess? The World Health Organization estimates that some one
thousand people commit suicide in the world—every day!
Suicides now outnumber murders. Now various organiza-
tions for the prevention of suicide are a reality. But the cause is
Only a minority, of course, go to this extreme, but the over-
whelming majority do end their lives in failure.
Much of the world is in current “prosperity.” Yet—even
within the affluent U.S.—95 percent of businesses fail within
the Seven lawS of SucceSS
five years of inception. Across the world streaks the shocking
trend of increasing failures. Scores of millions daily allow the
creeping cancer of failure to chain them to a life of unhappy
circumstances, from which only death promises release.
Why are only the very few really successful? Is it mere
chance—is it just happen-so—can it be luck? Or are there
Why do all but the very few find themselves, by age 60 or
65, dependents? Why must there be old-age pensions, public
welfare aid, charities to support the non-crippled, non-handi-
capped helpless? Why must children so often provide for aged
parents—when it ought to be the other way around?
I am going to tell you why!
There are definite causes! Seven basic laws govern success! It
is high time people come to know them, and end this unhappy
and needless tragedy!
F I n d I n g T H e A n s w e r
When I was a young man of 23, I was a member of the edito-
rial staff of a national magazine. I was sent on tours over the
United States, covering 10 or 15 states each tour. My assignment
was investigating business conditions, reporting workable ideas
and facts. I interviewed businessmen and chamber of commerce
officials. I discussed with merchants and manufacturers their
problems. I searched out ideas and methods that had been suc-
cessfully applied in sales promotion, public relations, cutting
costs, speeding up turnover, increasing profits.
One of the things my editors assigned me to investigate was the
reason behind the success of the few, and the failure of the many.
Some 95 percent of smaller independent merchants were reported
by Dun and Bradstreet to be heading toward bankruptcy.
Of course, we were concerned then only with the success or
failure of men. But the same laws apply to the lives of women.
I asked the opinions of hundreds of businessmen. Most thought
success resulted merely from superior ability, and failure from the
lack of it. But this opinion consigned the big majority to failure
from birth without a chance. If a man lacked the ability, he was
the Seven lawS of SucceSS
foredoomed to failure. There seemed nothing he could do about it.
I was not satisfied with this idea—and later I proved it false.
The manager of the large J.L. Hudson department store in
Detroit thought failure generally resulted from lack of adequate
capital. A minority interviewed agreed with him. But this, also,
made dollars, and not the man, responsible for success or failure.
Actually, investigation showed these to be contributing
factors, but only that. A more prevalent factor, I found, was
fitting the proverbial “square peg in the round hole.” Most
failures were misfits. Most, had they known these seven laws,
could have made a success in the field where they best fit.
This quest for the reasons for success or failure intrigued me.
My research on this question did not stop with these editorial
tours. Observation and analysis of this problem have continued
through the years.
And I know, now, that no human being need ever become a
Failures are not foredoomed. Success does not just happen! It
is governed by seven definite laws. If you know them, and apply
them, the happy result, in the end, is assured.
Every individual was put on this Earth for a purpoSe! Every
person was put here to become a success. Every human ought to
enjoy the sweet taste of success—to find peace and happiness—
to live an interesting, secure and abundant life! And in order
that all might—if willing—reap such full and abundant rewards,
the Creator set in motion actual, definite lawS to produce that
The tragedy is that through the centuries and millenniums
man has turned his back on those laws—those causes of the very
success he craves! The world long ago ignored and forgot them.
Today, most people do not know what they are. Most people have
not fol owed a single one of the seven basic laws.
I ask in all candor—isn’t that a shocking state of human
affairs? It is, in fact, the colossal tragedy of all history!
Yo u c A n ’ T B u Y I T !
If some recognized authority had a copyrighted plan to sell that
was guaranteed to make all who follow it prosperous and suc-
the Seven lawS of SucceSS
cessful, I suppose people by the thousands would flock to buy
One man had such a plan. It was a sort of pseudo “psycho-
logical” religion. He promised the plan would make its fol-
lowers prosperous or rich—the easy way, of course. Its propa-
gator advertised that it had made him rich. He boasted of his fine
home, his great high-ceiling pipe-organ room. The inference was
that it would make its purchasers equally prosperous—but he
neglected to mention that it was the naive dupes who bought his
bogus plan who made him rich.
This man stumbled onto an advertising catchphrase for a
headline in magazine and newspaper advertisements, which
multiplied responses. He used it for years. But ultimately it wore
itself out. This charlatan’s “success” was neither real nor lasting.
He was, himself, a colossal failure.
The only way to true success is not a formula being sold like
You can’t buy it with money. It comes to you free—without
money, and without price. There is a price, of course—your
own application of these definite laws. It is not guaranteed to
be the easy way—but it is guaranteed to be the only way to real
c l A r k g A B l e— s u c c e s s ?
It so happens that on the very morning of the day this was orig-
inally written, I read in a London newspaper the obituary of
Clark Gable, motion picture celebrity. I suppose the world would
rate him a great success. But was he?
Just what is success, anyway?
How can people win success when so few know what it is?
I was struck with a number of things in this cinema-star’s
obituary. My mind, of course, was on this theme, since I was at
the moment writing on it.
Clark Gable was heralded on page one of this newspaper as
king of the films. He was described as “the romantic hero of 90
films.” He was one of the first 10 money-making stars in the years
1932-43, 1947-49, and 1955. That is 16 years. And the top film stars
make fabulous incomes. “He was,” said the obituary, “one of the