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The Earning Capacity


"If you want to know whether you are destined to be a success or a failure in life you can easily find out. The test is simple and it is infallible : ARE YOU ABLE TO SAVE MONEY? If not, drop out. You will lose. You may think not, but you will lose as sure as you live. The seed of success is not in you."— JAmes J. Mu.

We referred, in the preceding chapter, to the factors that are active in the earning of money. They are more numerous than we usually suppose. To begin with, work, even of the humblest sort, requires some degree of skill. Street-sweeping may be done well or ill and no more may be said of the work that falls to the hands of the most important man of affairs.

Skill is a quality, not of muscle but of mind. Every worker must strive to master his work with the mind until his mastery of it is complete. When he has reached that point, he is invariably ready for better work, and he as invariably finds it.

In order that mind and body may be de voted to work as they should be, the worker must possess health. Health is the condition that permits one to do work with a clear per ception of what it calls for, and sufficient strength to meet its demands.

Just as it is necessary to attain skill, so it is necessary to maintain health. Hence, a wise man will forego the inessential pleasures that interfere with the free expression of him self as a worker. He will accustom himself to simple food that gives the maximum of nourishment ; things, however tempting in ap pearance, he will avoid if they unfit him for his best efforts; he will secure the necessary amount of sleep to bring body and mind in tune again. In brief, he will guard his health unceasingly, because it is his capital.

The third factor with which we work is Time. It not only provides us with the hours for work itself, but with other hours for rest and for the increase of skill. There is no portion of the day more valuable to the work er than his leisure. It means opportunity for culture, study, amusement, and many other possibilities equally essential. What men have

done in their leisure hours to attain a greater degree of skill, has been told in many books. This use of leisure, yielding greater skill, ul timately results in increased earning ability; in fact, in greater fortune.

He is a wise worker who is forever active in mind, seeking a broader outlet for his ca pacity. The study hour is, in fact, invest ment. By study, the mind is not only enriched, but it gains power. It analyzes more closely, sees farther, comprehends more quickly. Hence, more mind is the result. As every one works primarily with the mind, he will work more and better who is constantly increasing its power.

It has been said that most careers are made after supper. The fact is, all careers are made after supper : Some for good, some for ill, some for not much of anything. But what ever it is, it is shaped and fashioned after six o'clock.

And from this fact we can deduce this bit • of wisdom: A man is worth just about as much as he gets out of his leisure hours.

What have we before us when the day's work is done? Four or five hours of the best part of the day. If one is ambitious, here is the great opportunity to study out the one plan that should interest everybody, namely : What should I strive to be, to do, and to have? The story is interesting of a man who set to work to discover how he could earn more money. His position paid him well for what he had to do. But to do it, required of him this daily program: 5.3o Arise and prepare for breakfast. 6.3o Walk to the train. 6.3o-8.3o Spent reaching the office.

8.45-12 Office work.

12-I Lunch.

1-5 Office work.

Travel home.


8-9.3o Rest from the day's work.

Here is a program that renders life arduous simply because of the geographical relation between home and office. The man in ques tion moved into town and took a room near his place of business—with this result : 7 Arise and prepare for breakfast.

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mind, skill, man, hours and worker