We all know the quotes and inspirational speeches. Yet still the word failure plus the feelings, thoughts and emotions that come along with it stifles our future progress.
We are now firmly in the age of information and connectivity, yet so very few among us reach the dizzying heights of success or reach our potential. Looking at some of the reasons why has inspired me to write this post.
As most people scroll through the news feed on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, it’s difficult not think that everyone accept you is living healthy, successful ,productive and fulfilled lives.
Is that social pressure of keeping up with the Kardashins. Always looking to the rich, famous and successful as the bar we judge and set our lives upon. Is this the reason we avoid failure at all costs?
When you read this or say it out loud to another person it sounds silly right? Of course not; success doesn’t have to be fame or riches. The shear number of us who tune into the successful and famous lifestyle via social networks, television or radio, we can’t ignore that they may have an effect on us that we may not be ready to admit or really notice. Clever advertisers and marketing executives pay thousands of pounds to Celebs to endorse products that we consume by the bucket load. The influence is something that businesses tap into which does provide them with real results.
Before you assume that I’m saying that we are all nothing more then brainwashed zombies who mindlessly follow how to live and what to do by people we don’t really know. I do want to say that famous, rich and successful people are a very important part in our society, also deserve to be recognised for what they do.
A key question I ask people after stating these facts is, “Will this lead you in to a life of inspiration or insecurity?”
Having someone to look up to such as a mentor, coach, sports person,celebrity or business person is a great thing and is needed to:
- Broaden your horizons
- Inspire you to see a bigger picture
- See the rewards of what your own actions could bring
This is fantastic yet the other side of the coin reads that these people could make you feel:
- They never started where you are now they had a head start
- Jealous of them seemingly having lots of money and power
- They are super talented and lucky
- You simply aren’t good enough
- You are missing out unless you have the lifestyle they do
For those of us who live on the side of inspiration life is full of endless possibilities and opportunities. This post is for the people who maybe lean to the side of insecurity, things may not be as they appear.
” People are not always who they POST to be”
Social media as it is a great way to promote yourself and with users being in the 100’s of millions and soon into the billions in the very short future, the culture is still very new and unfolding, also constantly changing and hard to understand. Even employers now do look to your social media and it does shape what peoples perceptions of you are. I admit there is more pressure for people and businesses to really take some thought and consideration into their social profile as it is becoming very important in not just our social lives.
The thought of this can seem quite daunting, also within the whole failure+failure=success equation a little bit confusing.
You definitely won’t see many of my posts saying “hello everyone look how poor and untalented I am.” Yet the undercurrent of, do not post unless you have something fantastic or amazing to share or the don’t post too much or people will think it’s spam usually prevails. Tied in with a little bit of criticising what everyone else puts up.
So all of the quite mundane and not so glamorous tasks leading to that moment are missed, giving people the illusion of the success being instantaneous.
This is where your perceptions of what is and what isn’t can really come in to play.
When we delve a little deeper and actually learn some things about the people who seem to have it all. Some startling consistencies start to pop up even among those on the surface who have little in common, or even people who have lived generations apart.
Take for instance Thomas Edison, the Canadian inventor born in 1847, who is famed with the manufacturing for wide spread use of the incandescent electric light bulb. Yet what people forget is that it took him a whopping 10,000 tries. Along with many of his inventions such as the phonograph, a machine for recording sound. Edison’s career wasn’t as straight forward as one may think, failing numerous times in business. Even at one stage he tried to invent a device which used electrical currents to be able to communicate with the dead!
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Another example is Michael Jordan, one of the most well known sportsmen of his generation turned businessman and entrepreneur. He is well known for his exploits on the basketball court, yet in high school was told that he was too short to play at that level. Only after growing four inches and working vigorously to prove himself did he start showing the signs on the Michael Jordan that we knew and love. The 6 time NBA championship winner, Olympic gold medallist and MVP, had his fair share of trials and tribulations, including breaking his foot in his second NBA season. Also being in the losing team in three consecutive finals losing to the Detroit pistons.
“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.” -Michael Jordan
There are so many more examples of people we have idolised and respected but when we inspect a little closer we can clearly see that Edison, who lived and died before Michael Jordan was even born, share some similarities. They failed and they didn’t just fail a little bit they failed big time. If you really pay attention even at their height of fame and fortune they still failed. You could argue that in Jordan’s case that the failure was necessary for him to find an extra level and work even harder than before.
Are you reading this correctly? Some of the most talented and successful people of all time failed, looking from the outside you wouldn’t even consider this or think it’s true.
A persons ability to learn from mistakes and failures has a massive effect on their level of success. This isn’t my opinion or even anything new you’re reading. This is from studying the most successful people in the world and seeing what they have in common, not just money and power, but preceding that failure too.
So maybe next time you look at a person who seems to be overwhelmingly successful and affluent, maybe they haven’t had a lucky break. Maybe they have just failed a lot more then you or I.
When looking at your goals it may come down to how willing you are to fail.
In summary one thing a personally believe is that failure is never final and success never lasts forever either, they are constantly revolving as we grow develop and push our boundaries.
Ask yourself, when was the last time you failed?
Thanks for reading,
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