Book Review: The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles

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The Science of Getting Rich is a self-help classic that offers advice for achieving abundance. In this book, you’ll learn how to use directed thinking to attract opportunity and opulence while accomplishing anything you want.

You may be wondering if you should read the book. This book review will tell you what important lessons you can learn from this book so you can decide if it is worth your time.

Without further ado, let’s get started.

Key Insights

Lesson 1: Everyone has the potential to become wealthy.

Even though everyone has access to money, people use excuses to explain why others succeed where they fail. Poor people may blame their circumstances on their socioeconomic background, financial situation, geographic location, or home environment. There is no such thing as class oppression.

Talent and capital are not prerequisites for an opportunity. All one needs to do is believe in one’s own ability to become wealthy. Rich and poor people may share similar upbringings, financial habits, and occupations, but they differ in their beliefs only.

To be clear, this does not mean that every person who tries to get rich will face the same difficulty. It is true that life circumstances can influence the ease or difficulty of accumulating wealth. Also, be realistic; selling bathing suits in Antarctica, for example, would be extremely difficult. Regardless of whether the job appears to have little to no upward mobility, as long as the work is reasonable, it will be lucrative.

Lesson 2: The pursuit of money is virtuous and necessary for a happy life.

Money is necessary for a full and happy life. The pursuit of thoughtful reflection, spiritual development, and intellectual achievement require financial independence. Rather than a goal in and of itself, wealth serves as a means to an end. Money is merely a foundation on which a well-crafted life is built.

The desire for money, given its necessity, does not make one selfish or materialistic. Wealth is the key to achieving one’s full potential. Furthermore, wealth enables people to assist others in the best possible way. Helping family members live full, meaningful lives are admirable.

Being open about your desire for wealth is not a sign of shame. That’s part of being a good role model. Many people mistakenly believe that thrift and simple living are noble pursuits. In fact, the exact opposite is true. It is morally wrong to accept a life of deprivation because it prevents you from reaching your full potential. Everyone has a responsibility to develop their mind, body, and soul, and pursuing wealth is a means to that end.

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Lesson 3: There is an infinite supply of everything in the universe.

There is a common misconception that the world’s wealth is finite. It is simply not true. There is no limit to the riches that the world can produce. The raw material from which the universe is created is infinite. Individuals, interest groups, and institutions cannot withhold money from others because economic oppression does not exist. Wealth is accessible to everyone.

Wealth has no limit, so you can always be generous to others, even if you aren’t yet wealthy. As long as you believe that you will receive more money, you will always have access to it. The emphasis in business transactions should be on what you give rather than what you receive. By exceeding expectations, customers feel that they are getting good value for their money.

The science of getting rich is impossible to fail when someone truly believes in it. Short-term failures serve only to advance long-term success. Failure should not discourage you since it is only a temporary setback. A cycle of failure will be perpetuated if you indulge in self-pity or become doubtful about your success.

Lesson 4: There is no need to compete with others.

The pursuit of success is not a zero-sum game. Your success will never cause another person to fail, and another person’s success will never harm you. Envy is absurd because there is enough opportunity and resources in the world for everyone. There’s no reason to be envious of what others have when you know that the universe will provide whatever you desire.

Long-term success does not require a competitive mindset. One reason is that if you take someone else’s job or money, it is possible that someone else will take it away from you. If you cheat or steal money from another person, whatever you gain will be fleeting. Even if you gain something in the short term, it will not feel satisfying or good.

People become anxious when they become competitive. Negative emotions do not attract wealth and success. Anxiety is not in sync with the spirit of the abundant universe. In contrast, creation is a positive act that attracts money. It is preferable to focus on what you want to create in the world rather than on short-term gain.

Lesson 5: Thoughts influence what happens in the physical world.

The mind has tremendous power to shape reality. What happens in people’s lives is determined by how they think. A woman who constantly worries about disease, for example, is more likely to become ill. A poor man who focuses on his poverty will remain poor. A poor man who focuses on his future riches, on the other hand, will make those riches a reality. To put it another way, you can think your way to wealth.

The problem is that believing you are wealthy is often easier said than done. A poor family dealing with the day-to-day realities of financial hardship may find it difficult to focus on wealth and happiness. Furthermore, they cannot simply hope to become wealthy; they must truly believe it, despite all evidence to the contrary. The sheer force of sustained belief will manifest the money over time.

It’s natural to wonder why thoughts shape reality and how the process works. But speculating is pointless. In many ways, becoming wealthy is a matter of faith. Doubt is a form of self-destructive behavior.

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Lesson 6: A grateful attitude attracts the universe’s favor.

To achieve success, one must practice gratitude consistently, a feeling that helps align consciousness with the universe’s generous nature. Prior to reap the benefits of wealth, you should practice being thankful every day. The universe will give you wealth regardless of whether you believe in eventual riches, so you might as well be grateful for it now.

The advantage of gratitude is that it prevents you from feeling competitive with others. Thankfulness draws the mind’s attention to the universe’s generous nature, particularly the formless matter from which the world’s bounty was created. A person’s energy and thought patterns cause formless matter to respond. People who are content and thankful attract it, while entitled, negative, or skeptical people repel it.

Those who are unthankful for the abundance in their lives, and especially those who focus on lack rather than abundance, are setting themselves up for failure. Because thoughts shape material reality, distress only exacerbates it. When one maintains a positive attitude, the same cyclical process can be utilized to one’s advantage.

Lesson 7: The science of becoming wealthy necessitates a shift in mindset rather than a change in circumstances.

You should strive for success today, not tomorrow. Many people mistakenly believe that becoming wealthy necessitates a major life change, such as a new job or environment. More than likely, the best place to begin is right where you are. Willpower alone will bring about the necessary changes for success.

A woman who wants to get rich, for example, may be concerned that her current job offers no opportunities for advancement. But it makes no difference. Instead of looking for a new job, she should focus her efforts on performing well in her current position. A constant focus on the present, rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, is the most effective way to advance professionally.

People who are unhappy with their current situation should avoid dwelling on their dissatisfaction, which tends to breed more dissatisfaction. Imagining a positive outcome is a far better use of time and energy.

People who are confident in their own professional advancement, even if there is no evidence of it yet, are naturally appealing to others. Others may be moved to offer the confident person a job or other opportunity after witnessing their confidence. In this way, believing in your own success manifests it.

Lesson 8: Requests to the universe should be as detailed as possible.

It’s critical to consider what you want from the universe in a specific way. Everyone has a hazy vision of wealth and success. The things you want should be as specific and sharply imagined as possible to make yours stand out to the universe. Rather than wishing for a large house, for example, imagine every room in that house down to the smallest detail. Rather than hoping for a large sum of money, it is preferable to have a specific amount in mind. A thought must be strong and forceful in order to have enough power to shape material reality. Ambition alone will not suffice.

Requesting a wish from the universe is similar to other forms of communication. You wouldn’t walk into a bar and ask for a drink without first telling the bartender exactly what you want. Similarly, simply telling a financial advisor that you want more money is insufficient. It is critical to communicate your specific financial goals so that they can determine the best way to assist you in reaching them.

Maintaining a vivid fantasy of the life you want to live is important not only so that the universe knows how to grant your wish, but also because it is a powerful motivator. The desire fuels concrete steps forward that increase the likelihood of success.

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Lesson 9: Getting rich requires hard work and determination.

To become wealthy, you need more than passive belief. Participation, ambition, and a willingness to work hard are required for the process. In order to become wealthy, you must commit to making it a reality once you have broadcast your desire into the universe. By taking action, you will strengthen your mind’s ability to shape reality.

If you contribute, the universe will bend to your will. Believing in the inevitability of wealth will lead you to it. After focusing on becoming wealthy, it is not necessary to waste time on hope or prayer. The presence of certainty is sufficient.

Willpower is a personal tool, which is an important principle to remember. Trying to impose your will on others is inappropriate. For you to become wealthy, you don’t have to bend other people’s actions to your will. Only you can make yourself wealthy, so put all of your efforts into it. Your singular focus is essential in this process. Allowing your thoughts to wander into the affairs of others is a distraction that will only undermine your efforts.


1. Practical and Actionable Advice

The Science of Getting Rich provides readers with actionable advice that can be applied in their daily lives. Wattles emphasizes the importance of taking concrete steps towards wealth and success, rather than simply hoping or wishing for it. By focusing on specific goals and creating a clear vision of the life they want to live, readers may be more motivated to take action towards their goals.

2. Emphasis on Gratitude and Giving Back

Another aspect of the book that I appreciate is its emphasis on gratitude and giving back. Wattles argues that readers should focus on creating value and contributing to the world, rather than simply seeking to accumulate wealth for its own sake. By being thankful for the abundance in their lives and giving back to others, readers may be more likely to attract further opportunities for success.

3. Timeless Principles

Despite being written over a century ago, the principles outlined in The Science of Getting Rich are still relevant today. The book offers a timeless perspective on wealth and success, emphasizing the power of mindset and action in achieving one’s goals. This makes it a valuable read for anyone looking to shift their mindset towards abundance and attract more opportunities for success.


1. Overemphasis on Individualism

While Wattles argues that wealth is accessible to everyone, he overlooks the systemic barriers to wealth accumulation that exist in our society. The book places too much emphasis on individual effort and belief, without acknowledging the role of larger social structures and inequalities in shaping access to wealth and opportunities.

2. Lack of Nuance

The Science of Getting Rich presents a somewhat simplistic view of wealth and success, failing to acknowledge the complex realities and challenges that individuals may face in achieving their goals. While the book offers valuable advice, it may oversimplify the process of wealth accumulation and fail to account for the nuances of individual experiences.

3. Limited Diversity of Perspectives

The book is written from a very specific perspective, which may not be relatable or relevant to all readers. While Wattles acknowledges that life circumstances can influence the ease or difficulty of accumulating wealth, the book largely ignores the experiences of marginalized or underprivileged groups. This limited perspective may make the book less accessible or relatable to some readers.


Overall, The Science of Getting Rich offers a compelling and thought-provoking approach to achieving wealth and success. While some of Wattles’ claims may be overly simplistic or optimistic, there is certainly some truth to his principles of belief, gratitude, action, and visualization. By focusing on these principles and committing to making their dreams a reality, readers may be able to attract more opportunities for success and live a more fulfilling life.

One potential drawback of the book is its emphasis on individualism and the idea that wealth is accessible to everyone. While this may be true in theory, in practice, there are certainly systemic barriers to wealth accumulation that cannot be overcome simply by belief and visualization. It is important to acknowledge these barriers and work towards systemic change in addition to individual action.

About The Author

Wattles may not be a well-known figure, but his work had a big impact on the self-help genre. He wrote for a magazine called Nautilus, which focused on self-improvement. Wattles had a tough time financially before becoming successful later in life, according to his daughter’s letters.

Wattles was one of the early thinkers in a movement that would later be called the New Thought movement. Rhonda Byrne’s best-selling book, The Secret, was inspired by Wattles’ book, The Science of Getting Rich. Byrne stumbled upon Wattles’ book in 2004 when she was struggling professionally and dealing with the loss of her father. The Secret and Wattles’ book share similar ideas about the law of attraction. Oprah Winfrey, who was a big supporter of The Secret, helped bring New Thought ideas to a wider audience.

Wattles believed that his method was scientific and guaranteed to work. However, it is essentially a matter of faith, similar to religion. According to his theory, believing that you will become wealthy will make it a reality. It’s impossible to disprove his method because there’s no set timeline for it to work – it could happen quickly or take a long time. Those who truly believe in it see setbacks as only temporary, making failure impossible.

The Science of Getting Rich Quotes

“If you want to help the poor, demonstrate to them that they can become rich; prove it by getting rich yourself.”


“There is abundance of opportunity for the man who will go with the tide, instead of trying to swim against it.”


“There is never any hurry on the creative plane; and there is no lack of opportunity.”


“Do all the work you can do, every day, and do each piece of work in a perfectly successful manner; put the power of success, and the purpose to get rich, into everything that you do.”


“Go on in the certain way, and if you do not receive that thing, you will receive something so much better that you will see that the seeming failure was really a great success.”

Buy The Book: The Science of Getting Rich

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