‘Tis a well known fact that when Edison was in the “process” of creating the light bulb, he failed 10,000 times before that final success.
But what is probably NOT so well known is this – each and every time that Edison failed (and some of these attempts took weeks to fully test before the test could be called a “failure”!) he was overjoyed.
In fact, assistants have reported him being “over the moon” each and every time he failed – and while that might sound strange (i.e. celebrating failure); such was Edison’s response to the creative process.
When asked why, this was the answer “I’ve not failed. I’ve simply found another way that doesn’t work!”
Jack Ma, billionaire founded of Alibaba, one of the world’s biggest ecommerce companies (and more) once famously remarked that if he were to write a book about Alibaba it would be “1001 mistakes of Alibaba” as opposed to the success story itself.
And he should know. Ma wasn’t always the multi-billionaire and philanthropist that he is today – in fact, he was what most people would consider to be an “abject failure” until age 35.
Rejected from no less than 30 jobs (including a job at KFC) and no less than TEN times from Harvard. Got a score of less than 1 on his college entrance exam (Ma was never any good at Math, and still isn’t by his own admission).
You’d think that a person like this would be far more likely to talk about his one success – – the astounding success that Alibaba was – – as opposed to failure, but no – – study any of his interviews, or talks, and you’ll see that Ma has ALWAYS said that it’s far more important to talk about the many failures a person has on the way to success – – as there is far more to LEARN from them.
I’ll never forget the Ma quote he once made during an interview (I believe it was) “Today is hard, tomorrow will be harder – but the day after tomorrow will be SUNSHINE”.
And ‘tis true, my friend. ‘Tis true.
Look at anyone that’s achieved anything of note – riches, fame, inventions, or what not – there has been a time – or many times in their life where they were not only down and out – – but also classified as outright failures – not to mention NOT having much, or any money at all during that time.
We know that Henry Ford, for instance piled up a fortune the likes of which four or five generations would be hard pressed to squander – – but do you know that Ford went literally bankrupt – – not once, but TWICE while on the road to his third (and what would ultimately prove to be his) trial – – and eventual success?
If there ever are three people that embody the term “PERSISTENCE” – – that ONE quality that Napoleon Hill talks about so often in Think and Grow Rich as being one of the qualities most people don’t have – – and therefore the quality that keeps most from achieving goals and riches – – the three people I’ve stated above DO!
Now, does this mean that you “expect to fail” when you set a goal?
Does this mean your “first try” will never be a success?
Not at all, my friend.
I’m not telling you to expect failure. Quite the contrary. If I were to tell you this – – there would be no point in you setting goals in the first place!
What I AM telling you is this – – nothing of note was accomplished without struggle – – and failures along the way.
Failure, my friend is what tests your METTLE – and tests what you’re made of before “fate” finally hands over the keys to the “golden gates!”
Failure and how you react to it is usually almost always what determines if you’ll ultimately succeed or not. As Rocky Balboa said, it ain’t about how hard you can hit – – it’s about how hard you can GET hit – – and keep getting back up for more!
Failure teaches you way, way more about the process of success than the final success does itself, and failure is the #1 “factor” that teaches you to ENJOY the journey of getting there, my friend.
And that’s the other key.
You have to enjoy the process of getting to a goal – – or you’ll likely never ever get there.
And all of this applies just as much to fitness as it does life, my friend.
If you wake up each morning “cursing the workout ahead”, chances are you’ll not only NOT workout – but even if you do – you’ll do it half heartedly, and quit mid way through to your goal.
When I was on my own fitness journey – often times some days were downright BRUTAL.
I’d be lying to tell you it all went according to plan – – especially when I had bleeding calluses on both palms while on the way to the 100 pull-up goals I’ve mentioned in the past.
Dr. Maxwell Maltz refers to this as well in Pyscho Cybernetics – – a book I highly urge you to read and APPLY – – even if you’re not a reader.
In that book he states that the automatic goal seeking mechanism that resides within ALL of us (and yes, this goal can either be a positive one or negative one depending upon how we program our minds) functions much like a guided missile on the way to it’s target might.
It doesn’t “chart a straight line” to it’s goal.
It zigs. It zags. It makes detours – – but it eventually GETS there – and the process is the SAME with goals you set for yourself, my friend.
And back to the calluses and the pull-up journey (one amongst many) – – I learned a lot from all that – – and learned to APPRECIATE and ENJOY the JOURNEY itself!
And when the goals I had were finally achieved – – I achieved way more than I set out to initially, and it didn’t feel like torturous at all.
It felt like … well, that I was always going to accomplish those goals.
And truth be told, that is what I started out with anyway – the end result.
In my mind – – and that is what I urge you to do as well, my friend!
If you’re currently aiming at a goal that seems absolutely impossible to achieve – start with the end in mind. Visualize it intensely, and with emotion as often as you can, and believe me though the process might not seem easy – – manifest it will, my friend.
It sure will – there’s no two ways around it!
Ok, so that’s a ton of lessons in one post. See if you can figure ‘em all out!
P.S. – Dr. Maltz correctly states in his book that we’re built to be goal seeking machines – and if we don’t actively set positive goals for ourselves, our mechanisms automatically go into “negative goal seeking mode”. Napoleon Hill cautions against this in Think and Grow Rich as well. Food for thought, my friend. Certainly food for thought!
P.S. #2 – Whats YOUR fitness goal for the day? Have YOU gotten in your workout for the day as yet? More to the point, have you got the one System that’ll allow you to reach all your fitness goals quicker than you ever thought possible? It’s right here, my friend – – and waiting for YOU as we speak – – http://0excusesfitness.com/0excusesfitnessystem/
P.P.S – To those that were trying to access the site, but couldn’t – – my apologies for the downtime. Server issues – – yet again. Time to consider – – actively so – – a move to a NEW and BETTER server!