Some of the most inspiring success stories have started with failure. Longfellow started in failure. Michelangelo started in failure. Lincoln started in failure. Rod Serling wrote 40 stories before he had one that was accepted. Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper that felt he had no talent. Richard Byrd crashed his plane on his first solo trip before he became one of the world’s greatest explorers. And the success stories continue.

Be grateful for your adversity. At the same time, make sure that it’s working for your future, not against you. Make your failures give birth to great opportunity, not prolonged agony. Make your disgust lead to inspiration, not depression. The world will willingly sit by and let you wallow in your sorrows… until you die broke and alone. And here’s what else the world will do. The world will step aside and let you by, once you decide that your present situation is only temporary. The doors will open once you decide to get back on your feet and make your mark.

You have to care. In your own enlightened self-interest, give a run at adventure. Keep your eyes firmly set on achievement. Don’t settle for mere existence and self-pity. Make a commitment to excellence. And remember, it is your challenge, your own personal challenge, to use all your gifts and skills and talents and knowledge to survive and succeed.

This blog entry was excerpted, in part, from “Bouncing Back from Tough Times with Self-Encouragement, Part 2” by Jim Rohn

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