Greatest Failure of All Time

“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” Thomas Edison

On February 12 1809 the greatest failure in american history was born. He was born to (at the time) two wealthy parents. In 1816 his parents lost all their land and titles in a court hearing. In 1818 his mother died. In 1831 he worked for a business that would fail. 1832 ran for political office and lost. That same year he would be rejected by a law school. 1833 he would go bankrupt. 1835 he was engaged to his sweetheart and she would die the same year. 1836 had a nervous breakdown and would be on bed rest for 6 months. 1838 rejected as speaker. 1843 defeated in nomination for congress. 1854 defeated for us senate. 1856 lost nomination for vice president. 1858 lost the senate race again.

Why am I writing about such a failure. In 1860 he was elected as president of the United States. Even in this endeavor is was very difficult. The country would split just a few months after he was elected causing one of the worst “blemishes” in american history (the civil war).

By now you probably know this man was Mr Abraham Lincoln. He is kinda a big deal and he has many leather bound books :-). He would go on to play a large part in ending slavery. Through out all these failures he would have many successes.  He would go down as one the four faces on Mount Rushmore.  A staple of american success story’s and motivational speaker topics.

I give you this reminder of 8th grade us history to show you all the failures of an icon. There is no overnight success. There is always some disappointments. We don’t always win. There will be rejection along the way. There will be losses. You won’t always get the promotion. The girl won’t always dance with you. The boss won’t always take you ideas. The client won’t always buy what you are selling. Your favorite sports franchise won’t always win (or ever if you are a cubs fan).

 If Mr Lincoln had just once decided to quit running for office who knows what would have happened. I am of the belief that he would have never accomplished anything had he won his first election. Or what if the job he had wouldn’t have went out of business? He may have never tried anything else. What else would he strive for?

You could be so close to your goals and quit so close. The Marathoner never quits when they can see the finish line. I believe your finish line is close don’t give.

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to try just one more time.” Thomas Edison

The true test of success is what will you do with that failure. Should you use those failed attempts as motivation to change your world? Or shall you quit? My hope rest’s in the word changing part.

Thank you and come back.