Nobody enjoys failing, but you may be letting a fear of failure sabotage your chances for success. Some people are so afraid to fail that they refuse to try. However, failing to try is the only true failure. If you try something and fail, try again. Eventually you’ll succeed.
Without trying, your chances of success are 0%.
There are countless stories of historical figures that failed time and time again, but didn’t give up. Perseverance led them to success.
Consider these stories about people who simply wouldn’t quit:
1. Babe Ruth. Babe Ruth was one of the most famous home run hitters in the history of baseball. He had 714 home runs when he ended his career in 1935. That record stood until 1974 when Hank Aaron hit his 715th career home run.
- What many don’t realize about Babe Ruth is that in addition to his home runs, he also had 1330 career strikeouts. However, he didn’t let the strikeouts bother him. Babe once said, “Every strikeout brings me closer to the next home run.”
2. Harlan Sanders. Harlan Sanders, also known as Colonel Sanders, is famous for being the founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken.
- The Colonel faced many hardships because his famous fried chicken recipe wasn’t an instant success. When trying to market his chicken recipe to restaurants, Colonel Sanders was rejected 1,009 times.
- In 1952, he finally persuaded a Utah restaurant owner to partner with him and they launched the first Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant.
- By the early 1960s, there were over 600 locations in the United States and Canada.
4. Albert Einstein. The name Albert Einstein is synonymous with genius. He’s one of the most brilliant scientists who ever walked the earth. But did you know that Einstein didn’t speak until he was four years old, and didn’t learn to read until he was seven? When he was growing up, one of his teachers described Albert Einstein as “mentally slow.”
- Of course, when he grew up he went on to win the Nobel Prize in physics, devised the theory of relativity, and came up with probably the most famous formula in history, E=mc2.
5. Henry Ford. Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, is famous for his innovations in manufacturing and coming up with the idea of the assembly line.
- Although Ford achieved tremendous fame, fortune, and success in his lifetime, he also had several businesses early on that didn’t make it. His previously failed businesses left Henry Ford completely broke five times before he found success with manufacturing cars.
6. John Grisham. John Grisham is a wildly successful author who has sold millions of books, many of which have been turned into blockbuster movies. Getting his first book published wasn’t so easy though. His first book, A Time to Kill, was rejected by 28 different publishers before one publisher finally took a chance on him and printed 5,000 copies.
- Despite his rocky start, Grisham has gone on to sell over 250 million copies of his books.
7. Sylvester Stallone. Sylvester Stallone is a famous movie star, but many of his fans are unaware of the struggles he went through to break into the business.
- He was so strapped for cash at one point that he had to sell his dog for $25 in order to pay his electric bill. Just two weeks later, he wrote the script for Rocky and started trying to secure a movie deal.
- Sylvester Stallone was rejected over 1,500 times before United Artists offered him $125,000 for the Rocky script. However, the studio didn’t want Stallone to star in the movie.
- Back in the 1970s, $125,000 was a huge amount of money, but Stallone still refused. United Artists upped their offer to $250,000 and then to $325,000. Stallone wouldn’t accept the deal unless he was able to star in the movie.
- He eventually accepted a different deal that paid him just $35,000 and a percentage of the profits.
- Fortunately for Sylvester Stallone, the original movie went on to gross over $200 million. The Rocky franchise, with all of the sequels, has grossed over $1 billion.
If you’re letting a fear of failure hold you back from accomplishing your dreams, think about all these examples. How different would things have been if they had quit?
If these individuals had been afraid to fail, they wouldn’t have gone on to achieve the incredible success they enjoyed. Successful people embrace failure because they realize that there is no such thing as success without it.