“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” — Winston Churchill
In 1990, Rowling first had the idea for Harry Potter. She began writing furiously. However, later that year, she lost her mother.
In 1992 she moved to Portugal to teach English, married, and had a daughter. In 1993, her marriage ended in divorce and she moved to Edinburgh, Scotland to be closer to her sister. At that time, she had three chapters of Harry Potter in her suitcase.
Rowling saw herself as a failure at this time. She was jobless, divorced, penniless, and with a dependent child. She suffered through bouts of depression, eventually signing up for government-assisted welfare. It was a difficult time in her life, but she pushed through the failures.
In 1995 all 12 major publishers rejected the Harry Potter script. But, it was a year later when a small publishing house, Bloomsbury, accepted it and extended a very small £1500 advance. Today, Rowling has sold more than 400 million copies of her books and is one of the wealthiest women in UK, even richer than the Queen, and with a networth of over 1 BILLION US DOLLARS !
Stephen King’s first novel, Carrie, was rejected 30 times before it was published.
Not only that, but King actually threw the manuscript into the garbage, only later to be retrieved by his wife who wildly believed in his dream of becoming a published author.
Today, King has over 50 novels and has sold over 350 million copies of his work and has a networth of $400 million. Can you imagine what King’s life would be like had he given up?
Colonel Sanders was the founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC).it wasn’t until the age of 62 that he set out with a $105 social security check in hand to pitch his chicken recipe to restaurants. 1,009 folks told him he was crazy, but he didn’t give up.
The first restaurant that he landed was base out of Salt Lake City, Utah, which became the first Kentucky Fried Chicken.
The company grew and expanded faster than he could have ever imagined. In 1964, at the age of 74 years old, Sanders sold the company for $2 million dollars to a group of investors.
The Dyson Vacuum Cleaner is known around the world as the vacuum that doesn’t lose suction. Sir James Dyson first had the idea in his early 30’s.
His big idea was to use the concept of cyclonic separation to create the world’s first bagless vacuum cleaner. It took Dyson 5,126 failures to finally get it right. When he did, at the age of 36, he was faced with more resistance when no distributor in the UK would take on the revolutionary product.
This was because selling disposable vacuum bags alone, was a $100 million dollar business, and Dyson’s vacuum cleaner was going to disrupt this business, and no one wanted to disrupt the profitable trend.
So, Dyson hit the Japanese market in 1983, with a hot pink version of his vacuum cleaner. It won an industrial award in Japan, and in 1986, three years after its first introduction, he was awarded his first US Patent for it. However, manufacturers still didn’t want to take it on in other companies and did everything possible, to frustrate Dyson. So Dyson formed his own company, in 1993 at the age of 46, to market the product.
Today, Dyson is one of the richest man in thew world, with a net worth of more than £3 BILLION all because of his refusal to give up. He struggled through times of failure, sorrow, and regret, but he persevered.
I do not wish to bore you with stories of other famous people, that were once massive failures, like Thomas Edison who failed thousands of times before inventing the light bulb, Henry Ford, who was bankrupt 3 times, before building the most successful car company and becoming the richest man in the world for his era, or about Oprah Winfrey who was fired from a television, because they taught she was too emotional and unprofessional, but she went on to become the most powerful media woman on earth and for some time, also the richest black woman.
The most important takeaway from these stories and thousand of other unsung heroes, is that success lies at the far side of massive failure. Every successful person, usually meets with violent and terrible challenges that will destroy a weak soul.
Because the ability to go through massive failure over and over again, without giving up, is the major ingredient for success. If you can fail a 1000 times, and rise up 1001 times. If you keep moving forward even when your limbs are broken, if you refuse to bow down to millions of people booing and mocking you, if you refuse to give in to haters and critics, if you keep pressing forward even when you can see no light at the end of your tunnel.
You will be a great success my friend, you will be a great success, because the Universe can never deny a man, who refuses to give up.
See you at the top!