I know… I’ve been quiet lately. I’ve been going internal and working on new things, mostly myself. And for the most part, I’ve been failing miserably.
Last week, in the marvelous way the Universe works, I was looking for a birthday present for my teenage nephew and came across a book called No Summit Out of Sight, a true story about a 13 year old kid who climbed the 8 highest peaks in the world. I bought a copy for myself as well.
I’m 51 years old, and aside from a truly fantastic relationship with my Bohemian Soulmate, I have absolutely nothing to show for my life. I eek out a living working a job that takes a huge toll on my body and my emotions. I have no savings, and own nothing of monetary value. And this little shit of kid climbed the highest mountains on each continent by the time he was 13 years old.
But here’s the thing. As I said before, I’m working on myself. I have never given up. I have become a failure expert, but I have also been a huge success at one thing: NEVER GIVING UP!
“The only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything.”
I have had 6 or 7 different “careers” and have failed at all of them. But I haven’t given up.
I am finally on a path that I hope will be the one to bring me some financial security as well as an excitement to go to work each day. It is absolutely (metaphorically speaking) the highest mountain I’ve ever chosen to climb. The competition is fierce and the landscape is always changing. But it is something I love enough to be willing to face failure on a daily basis until I start winning.
Putting “losing” into perspective
In 2011, the New York Giants football team ended the regular season with 9 wins and 7 losses. That is only a 56% win rate. Even with that horrible record, they went on to WIN the Super Bowl that year.
I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.
Ty Cobb has the greatest all-time batting average of any baseball player in history with .366. That is more than 3 strikeouts for every 5 batting attempts.
My greatest failure
by Richard Branson
(Highlights. For the entire article, go here: https://www.virgin.com/richard-branson/my-greatest-failure)
Making mistakes and experiencing setbacks is part of the DNA of every successful entrepreneur, and I am no exception. Anybody who tells you they don’t make mistakes has just made one.
This isn’t just limited to entrepreneurs. Every successful person has at least one thing in common: they’ve got things wrong over and over again before finding the right solution. As Edison himself said: “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10000 ways that won’t work.”
What’s your greatest failure? And how did you (or how can you) turn it into an invaluable lesson?