Firstly, you need to understand that failure is a fact of life. Believe it or not, the most successful people in this world are those who failed the most!
Some of the most brilliant minds of our time got there because every time they failed to achieve the result they wanted, they looked at it as another step closer to getting it right next time.
When Thomas Edison had developed the first truly useable incandescent light bulb, he was asked how he managed to continue in his work when he had had so many failures? His answer was simply that he’d had no failures, but he’d discovered a thousand ways his light bulb wouldn’t work!
It’s very easy to lose heart and give up after your fantastic idea appears to fail at every hurdle, when in truth, the only time you can really fail is when you stop trying.
How does that work then?
As an example, let’s use a simple idea that almost everyone has experienced; How many times would you let a baby try to walk and watch them fail, before you stopped them from trying and just accepted that this baby was just never meant to walk? I assume that your answer would be you’d never stop them trying! So, is it any wonder that babies eventually walk?
So, why is it that as adults we all just stop trying when the going gets tough?
Unfortunately, as we grow older, our parents, our extended family, our friends, our teachers and mentors, etc. all teach us, through their own belief structures (even thought it’s usually not done deliberately), that only a select few will ever make a real success of their lives. Everyone else just has to be satisfied with the situation they’ve been given.
Very often as children we’ll hear our parents etc. say things like “children should be seen and not heard” and “You should only speak when you’re spoken to”. Is it any wonder so many of us are introverts with little or no self-confidence?.
You may also hear things like, “money goes to money”, or “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer”, or “of course he’s successful, his family have money so everything’s handed to him on a plate”. Get the idea?
The truth however, is that anything that’s been done by anyone previously, can be done by you!
I realise that sounds like a rash and over simplified statement, but think about it. Everybody starts off their lives the same way. They can’t talk, think for themselves, walk, eat without help, or even control their own bladder. Yet some become Astronauts, groundbreaking scientists, or World leaders, while others become homeless, or murderers, or drug addicts.
In the main, these people, whichever end of the spectrum they’re at, got there because of three things;
1. The belief structures imposed on them by their family and peers, etc.
2. The decisions they decided to make based on those belief structures.
3. Whether they imagined it would cause more pain than pleasure to change their circumstances.
There are some great quotes from some very wise people regarding what most of us refer to as failure;
Henry Ford said, “Failure is the opportunity to try again more intelligently”. Oliver Goldsmith said “Success consists of getting up just one more time than you fall”.
Michael Jordan when asked about his immensely successful basketball career replied, “I have missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game winning shot… and I missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life, and that’s exactly why I succeeded.”
Soichiro Honda said “Many people dream of success. To me, success can only be achieved through repeated failure and introspection”
The moral here is simple, never give up on your dreams. They may take a little longer to achieve than you expected and you’ll probably have to change your approach more than once to get there (sometimes many times 😉 ), but keep at it. Never give up and most importantly, believe in your ability to succeed!