In order to recognize success, it's first necessary to define failure. FAILURE is the refusal to establish a Plan and work toward its accomplishment regardless of the obstacles. Talk to people who have neither goals nor the motivation to succeed, and you'll find that their lives have no excitement, no purpose. They feel and act like failures. no matter what they say about how hard they tried.
The fact that you started a business and it went broke does not mean you failed. Some years ago a business I started went broke, as did I, and I had to declare bankruptcy. Shortly after that the owner of a metals business I was heavily invested in, ran off with all my money, along with everyone else's. Later, I Lost money on my first 3 attempts at Direct Mail. Did I fail in those 5 businesses? Absolutely not! I simply found 5 ways that a business won't work. Once you discover enough of them, it's difficult not to succeed the next time. At any point along the way I could have said that I don't have the talent for business, and at that point I would have failed.
"Portrait Of An Achiever"
Failed in Business -- Bankruptcy, 1831
Defeated For Legislature, 1832
Failed in Business -- Bankruptcy, 1834
Sweetheart-Fiancee Dies, 1835
Nervous Breakdown, 1836
Defeated in Election, 1838
Defeated For U.S. Congress, 1843
Defeated Again For U.S. Congress, 1848
Defeated For U.S. Senate, 1855
Defeated For U.S. Vice President, 1856
Defeated Again For U.S. Senate, 1858
ABRAHAM LINCOLN -- ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE U.S.A., 1860 -- "YOU CANNOT FAIL... UNLESS YOU QUIT!"
Knowledge and Planning
Knowledge and planning comprise the first ingredient in my success formula. I read constantly to gain more knowledge as well as for pleasure, and I subscribe to 19 newsletters. My wife likes it because she says it's like a Library. You must use your knowledge to "establish a plan." It's necessary to Control your impulses to do things without planning or outside the plan. I found myself very impulsive at first, and lacking good plans.
"Knowledge is Power" used to be my motto. I've added something to that now. "Applied Knowledge is Power." It isn't power unless you act on it!
The second ingredient is action and persistence. To succeed, you'll continually find yourself doing something new. something you've never done before. But if you want more than mediocrity from life, it's necessary to take a risk.
Trying is Lying
When working to achieve your goals, there is no such thing as trying! That's right! Read it again. Most of us have been told from the time we were children that it doesn't matter if we win or not, just as long as we try hard. "Trying" is a word meant to rationalize failure. It's an excuse. You either succeed or you don't. There is no in-between.
Twenty years ago I finally quit smoking. I had "tried" to quit many times, but it never worked. When I finally acquired a different mind-set and decided that I was never going to smoke again, it was easy, and I've never done it since.
"I tried" is a quitter's statement. It says you have either given up or decided that not reaching your goals is an okay way to continue to live your life. It's not how many times you fall down that determines whether you will eventually reach the top of the mountain. It's how many times you get up and get moving again! My grandmother gave me a card for my high school graduation that contained a wonderful poem saying basically the same thing about what it takes to be a man. I wish I still had it. Remember that failure occurs only when you quit or make an excuse for your inability to succeed. TRYING IS LYING -- lying to yourself about what you're really doing.
No one has ever become wealthy, prosperous, or influenced and improved lives without utilizing the principle of Free Enterprise. If you know how it works, you can use it to your benefit. Now you can learn how to benefit from it. Here's an illustration of the principle in use:
Coca-Cola does a reported annual sales volume of over three billion dollars. Three-quarters of it comes from coke machines themselves. Each coke machine does an average of only about $40 to $60 per month! "Only" $60 per month doesn't sound like much, does it? Unless you own 1,000 Coca-Cola machines! The secret is to learn how to multiply your efforts. Multiplication is the answer.
The third and final ingredient necessary to become wealthy is multiplication, the same principle behind Coca-Cola, 7-Eleven Stores, McDonalds, and every fortune-making enterprise in America today.
With this opportunity you have the means to multiply or duplicate yourself. I prefer Direct Mail to do this, but you may prefer to talk to people face to face. I chose Direct Mail because I can do most of it from home. I can do it when I want and as long as I want. I enjoy writing ads and copy, so it's fun for me.
If you want a richer life, you have to take responsibility for achieving it.