Forget Success, Learn To Fail

A focused man working on a sticker-covered laptop in a coffee shop
Tim Gouw / Unsplash

It is believed that Thomas Edison tried more than a 1,000 times before he could invent the light bulb. When asked how it felt like to have felt 1,000 times by a journalist, Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with a 1,000 steps.” This is a very interesting answer because in today’s society we have somehow forgotten that failing is part of the process for achieving success.

The story of Thomas Edison can be seen in all the successful people you know today: Walt Disney was fired from Kansas City Stars because the editor thought he lacked “Imagination and good ideas”; Oprah Winfrey was fired once because “she was too emotionally invested in her stories.”; Colonel Sanders was fired from so many jobs before finally deciding to go alone and found Kentucky Fried Chicken. We can go on to talk of Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Jay-Z, Van Gogh, Stephen King, Albert Einstein, and practically anyone you idolize today.

In today’s society of social media that seem to praise success, it is very easy to get caught up in the clamor to be successful yourself. To an extent, you fear and abhor failing. We want all that promises quick money to success, love, and fulfillment but forget that the road to achievement takes time and so many times requires us to fail, stop, reevaluate, re-strategize, and do it again.

I believe that if you want to achieve success, start by embracing failing. In failing we learn, in failing we understand and appreciate the value of success when it comes and above all, in failing we grow to be human and appreciate when a fellow does mistakes. The journey to love is made up of rejections, small fights, and heartbreak, the journey to fulfillment is riddled with moments of loneliness, endless search and sleepless nights. It is important to note that most of the times no one gets it right the first time. TC mark

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