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Today we’re going to be embracing failure.
That’s right, we’re embracing failure by looking at inspiration stories from failure to success.
Now, everybody seems to be under the impression that in order to be deemed a success, one must never fail.
After all, failure is for losers, right, not winners?
Some of the world’s greatest winners are only where they are today because at some point they failed.
Failure is not a weakness it is a part of everyday life and it can be used as a learning curve to help get us where we need to be.
No matter what you want to do in life, whether it’s your own boss, start your own business, drop 50 pounds, or simply lead a happy and fulfilling life, there will be failures along the way which you will need to embrace.
To help motivate you, inspire you, and show you that failing does not make you weak, here’s a look at some of the inspiration failure to success stories which we can all learn something from.
1. Walt Disney
Walt Disney is a name that some of you may have heard of.
We are of course being ironic here, as Walt Disney is arguably the most famous name in the world.
Everybody’s heard of Disney cartoons, and many of us grew up with these cartoons and animations and used them to shape and mold ourselves into who we are today.
The Disney name nowadays is one of the most lucrative and powerful names on the face of the earth.
To get to where he needed to be, however, Walt Disney suffered numerous setbacks along the way.
Aged just 22, Walt was fired from his dream job at a newspaper company.
The reason given was that he ‘had no good ideas and lacked imagination’.
Determined to succeed in the world of animation, he scrimped and saved, and borrowed, and purchased a small animation studio which he named ‘Laugh-O-Gram.
Sadly, the studio went bankrupt not long after opening its doors and Walt was broke and deflated.
With just 40 bucks to his name, he traveled to Hollywood in a bid to achieve his dreams.
Upon arriving, he noticed that there was a lack of animation studios and he knew he was onto something.
He set the wheels in motion for rectifying this, and he came up with the idea of a talking mouse by the name of Mickey.
The rest, as they say, is history.
Despite his passing more than half a century ago, the Disney legacy lives on and is worth just shy of $100 Billion as of this writing!
2. Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs was one of the Apple masterminds behind the groundbreaking, innovative, and hugely popular iPhone.
Now, believe it or not, but it was the fact that he was fired from Apple that helped to elevate Steve to greatness in the world of smart technology.
Jobs co-created Apple, and despite creating the company, after a disagreement with the board of directors, he was fired.
Now, that had to sting. Instead of licking his wounds, jobs kept busy by acquiring Pixar studios.
After the success of Pixar with hits such as Toy Story, jobs were hired back by Apple in 1997 and helped to invent arguably the world’s greatest smartphone, the Apple iPhone, along with other gadgets such as the iPad, iPod, and Macbook.
Jobs sadly passed away in 2011, yet at the time, his net worth was more than $10 Billion!
3. Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg is a name that is synonymous with the world of Hollywood.
He is one of the world’s most successful filmmakers, so why is his name on a list looking at the stories?
Well, because to get to where he still is to this day, Steven himself had to overcome failure.
During his school days, Spielberg had very poor grades which resulted in him being ejected from the University of Southern California three times.
When he was in college, he was hired by executives working for Universal Studios in 1969, who hired him to direct TV shows.
Now he was directing he honed his craft and went on to bigger and much better things.
He was won three Oscars and has directed some of the world’s most popular and successful movies, including E.T, Jurassic Park, Jaws, Schindler’s List, Saving Private Ryan, and many more besides.
He is still, without question, one of the most successful and talented directors in movie history.
4. Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos is one of the world’s richest men.
He is the CEO of Amazon and has a net worth of more than $150 Billion as of this writing.
He is one of the richest men in the world, yet by his own admission, he has made billions of dollars’ worth of failures along the way.
Surprisingly, Bezos failed after trying to go it alone.
He left a very well paying job in which he would be set for life.
He was great at what he did, he was very close to his boss, and he was earning more money than a lot of people would ever make.
Despite this, he quit with the blessing of his boss in the hopes of making it big.
He formed zShops which did not farewell.
This gave him the idea for Amazon, which he ran from his garage.
Amazon originally traded books online, until he started to branch out.
He chose the name Amazon for SEO-related reasons as it began with the letter ‘A’.
Even when Amazon was very well-established, he still created a few stinkers, including the ‘Fire Phone’ and the less said about that, the better.
Bezos believes that the ability to embrace failure and learn from your mistakes is one of the keys to succeeding with whatever you decide to do in life.
5. J.K. Rowling
This next story involves an author some of you might have heard of?
She’s J.K. Rowling and is the creator of that little-known series of books involving a wizard by the name of Harry Potter?
Ringing any bells?
Of course, it is, as Harry Potter is one of the most popular books and movie franchises on the face of the earth.
Rowling is one of the most influential authors in the world, not to mention one of the richest.
Despite this, she has seen her fair share of failure in the past.
After graduating from college, her life fell apart.
She married young and saw the marriage implode after a few short months.
She found herself jobless, a single parent broke, and lost.
Despite this, she dusted herself off, focussed on living her dreams of becoming an author, and created the idea of a young boy who happened to be a wizard by the name of Harry Potter.
The book was published, the world fell in love with Harry Potter, and decades later the world is still Potter mad.
6. Albert Einstein
The word ‘genius’ is banded around a lot nowadays.
Very few people referred to as being geniuses actually deserve the title, however.
Albert Einstein, though, is a man that definitely did!
This failure to success story may come as a bit of a surprise to some of you.
Einstein was a rebellious child who was expelled from school for bad behavior and was refused entry into numerous other schools and colleges as a result.
Despite this, he decided to get his head down, to focus on education, and he would go on to become one of the greatest minds that the world has ever seen.
His theory of relativity is the stuff of legends, and in his own words ‘success is a failure in progress’.
7. Michael Jordan
Even if you’re not a fan of basketball you’ll be familiar with Michael Jordan.
Michael Jordan is considered by many to be one of the greatest basketball players to ever walk the earth.
This story may come as a surprise to some of you, but many basketball coaches wouldn’t even give Jordan a shot because, believe it or not, at just under 6ft 5 inches in height, Jordan was considered too short to play the game.
When you consider the fact that the hoop is 10 feet in height, and that the average basketball player is around 7 feet in height, you can almost see why.
Despite this, he honed his craft, worked on his game, and soon caught the eye of coaches and talent scouts.
Now, Jordan’s failure doesn’t come from the fact that, at 6 ft 5 inches tall, he was considered short.
His failures come from the fact that, in a hugely popular Nike ad, Jordan spoke of how he’d missed over 9000 shots in his career, how he lost close to 3000 games, and how in 26 games he missed the winning shot of important games.
In the ad, he went on to say that ‘I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life.
And that is why I succeed’.
8. Thomas Edison
Thomas Edison is one of the world’s greatest inventors.
When talking about failure to succeed, you can’t overlook Edison as his methods very much revolved around trial and error.
When he was asked about his thousands of “failures” he experienced when he was attempting to create the lightbulb, Edison stated that he hadn’t failed, he had simply found thousands of methods that did not work.
In school, his mind would wander, he’d struggle to pay attention, and his teachers believed him to be a lost cause.
Thankfully he did not listen, or else who knows where we would be as soon as the sunset, and the night drew in?
9. Stephen King
Stephen King knows a thing or two about stories.
This failure to the success story is one that helped shape him into becoming one of the most successful authors that the world has ever seen.
Stephen King had a troubled childhood.
He was plagued by nightmares and suffered from poor mental health at times.
He was raised in poverty and as he grew older he found himself struggling with alcohol and drug addiction.
He used them as coping mechanisms to deal with his troubles, yet ironically they only served to make matters worse.
King knew that things had to change when he contemplated violence towards those that he cared about and so, rather than using drugs and alcohol, he turned to horror.
He used his past traumas as motivation and inspiration for writing horror stories and he was able to come up with classics such as ‘The Shining’, ‘Misery’, and ‘IT’ to name just a few.
He has won multiple awards, is a multi-time best-selling author, and has had countless novels and stories of his adapted into TV shows and movies.
10. Elvis Presley
Okay, to die whilst sitting on the toilet, morbidly obese, as a result of poor lifestyle choices is perhaps considered the ultimate failure.
Despite this, however, Elvis Presley is considered by many to be one of the most popular and talented singers that the world has ever seen.
He recorded multiple songs that simply went nowhere.
He attempted to join vocal quartets and was rejected as he was told that he apparently could not sing.
He was told he was going nowhere in the music industry and that he should go back to being a trucker.
He didn’t give up, however, and he proved to the world that he could indeed sing and was dubbed the ‘King of Rock and Roll’.
Failure To Success?
As you can see, the road to success is never easy, despite what social media users would have you believe.
Failure to succeed is considered by many to be a part of everyday life.
When you fail, don’t beat yourself up, simply dust yourself off, learn from the past, and use it to better yourself.