I thought I’d share an inspirational story about a guy I knew.
I met him in school. He had trouble focusing on his assignments–so much so that many thought he was slow or had some sort of learning disability. The teachers said on several occasions he was probably too stupid to learn anything. Eventually, he gave up. He stopped going to school. When he got older, he moved away and got a decent job at a major publishing company, but we still stayed in touch. He was doing fine for a while, but he had trouble getting his work done so he was fired. He had a string of other jobs after that that, sadly, ended with the same result.
He could have continued to work small time jobs and gotten by. But, he gave up. He stopped working and focused on his favorite hobby instead, where there was no one calling him stupid or laughing behind his back. By the time he turned 34, he won his first major award, followed by dozens and dozens more to date. Now, he’s arguably one of the most important people to have lived, ever.
You might have event heard of him. His name was Thomas Edison. Ok, I admit I didn’t actually know him :) As you probably know he’s one of the world’s greatest inventors of things like electrical lights, sound recording equipment and motion pictures. He held over 1,000 US patents on his inventions, and founded General Electric. Yes, that General Electric.
The moral of this parable is: Sometimes you have to give up to find success. That’s what winners do. Convincing yourself you’re OK with mediocrity? That’s the only true failure.