A divorced mother, living on welfare, going to school and trying to do what she knows how to do best anytime she is free; and that too, with a sick mother. In her words, she said “I’m the greatest failure I knew”. At a harvard commencement speech she said in her address, “failure meant a stripping away of the inessentials. I stopped pretending that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct my energy to finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I truly succeeded at anything, I might not have found that one area where I truly belonged”. If you are wondering who that is, she is JK Rowling, the author of the all-time award award winning series, Harry Potter.
If you are a misogynist and that is not enough for you, has it reached you of a teen who had speech difficulties as a child, rebelled against his school’s reliance on lote learning and failed, thought to be mentally handicapped, denied admission by a polytechnic and thought to be a loner. Well, he became renowned in his field, propounded groundbreaking theories and was a Nobel laureate; that’s albert Einstein, the father of relativity. There are countless stories of great failures becoming success.
You see, one secret to becoming a permanent failure is not trying at all as nothing can replace persistence and hardwork; not talent and not education. Nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Education cannot replace commitment and persistence as the world itself is full of educated derelicts. Without determination, you might never start but without commitment, you will never finish.
Satisfaction can not be derived from food with just a spoonful and neither can you drive a nail into a wall with just one hit, these take repeated action. How then can you say you’ve failed with or exhausted with just few trials?. Have you watched a baby trying to walk? Falling, rising, falling and rising again without giving up until it finally walks. The first step to success is having an answer to the one million dollar question; who am i?. identifying your strengths and weaknesses and stop trying to be a lawyer with a 98-2 ratio of Math-english proficiency. However, proficiency doesn’t translate to perfection or the absence of failures, accept and acknowledge your failures when they happen. Do not blame anybody and never should you give up. Why would you even think of giving up? Is it not someone in your bloodline that stood all hardships, slept in darkness, worked tirelessly on plantations without being paid and fed only a morsel of food just because he is black and a slave! If he had giving up or commited suicide, how would you have witnessed this beauty of a world?
Orison swett mardon once said “There can be no failure to a man who has not lost his courage, his character, his self-respect or self-confidence, he is still a king!”. Many of life’s failure are people who did not ealize how close they were to success when they gave up, a little more effort, a little more persistence and what seemed hopeless failure would have turned glorious success. Do not be afraid of failure, take calculated risks, try new methods, and go into deep and cold waters. If you think you can or think you can’t, you are both right. No great success was ever achieved without failure; is it edison’s 10000 to create a light bulb or dyson’s 5126 to invent a vacuum cleaner? Failure isn’t fatal but the failure to change might be.
Try again, fail again, fail better. People will forget your failures soon rather than late. We are all failures- at least the best of us are, says JM Barrie. When you give yourself permission to fail, you are also giving yourself permission to excel as no man is defeated without until he’s defeated within. Thomas Edison said “negative results are just what I want. They are just as valuable to me as positive results. I can never find the things that do the job best until I find the ones that don’t. the only true failure is not to be true to the best one knows. We can understand when kids are afraid of darkness, but what is the wrong with an adult afraid of light? Leave that darkness of failure into the glorious light! The world needs it but you need it more!
©Aboo Marhamah Odunewu Idris Ayoola.