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.


Passion of Purpose

The year was 2002. The top grossing film was Spider-Man. The winner of best picture was Chicago. The top album was by Eminem. The Champion of the Super Bowl was the Cinderella New England Patriots. The most amazing class in the history of high school classes graduated that year (my class). Also that year Rick Warren released The book Purpose Driven Life.

The book mentioned was the start of a movement. 30 million copies would be sold by 2007. Countless home groups would meet. Journal entries would be wrote. Pastors would preach. All in hope to help find life’s purpose. The self help industry grosses $12 billion a year. Americas obsession with the purpose of life is evident. In a recent poll 51% of people don’t know why they are here. 75% don’t think others know. That means the majority of those you come across are floating through life.

Unfortunately I can’t tell you what your purpose in life is. Neither can an author, spiritual leader, boss, sports coach, or highschool English teacher (sorry mrs Crowe).

I can however share a secret. Your passion can lead you to your purpose. Steve Jobs made his mark through his passion. Martin Luther King changed the world through his passion. Tony Hawk, Tom Brady, Bill Gates and others. You can think of people in your life that through passion changed your surroundings. There are people all over the world that aren’t searching for their purpose because they are flowing in their passion.

I surely don’t want to float through this life. I want to flow with passion.
A quote from Seth Godin
“Perhaps your challenge isn’t finding a better project or a better boss. Perhaps you need to get in touch with what it means to feel passionate. People with passion look for ways to make things happen”
Perhaps we need to find our passion.
Thankfully we are in an era where we can pursue it. If you want to write. Then write. Sing then sing. Act then act. Photography? Take pictures. We have a social platform to pursue our passions.
Don’t waste your money on books. Pursue your free passions and change your world.
Thank you and please come back.