Three Stories about Failure that Will Inspire You

March 30, 2019
In this article, discover three amazing stories about failure that will definitely inspire you to persevere. Read on!

Nowadays, people say that a problem is an opportunity and that failure is the beginning of a triumph. In fact, we hear it so much that we barely pay attention to its meaning. We oftentimes forget the great truth enclosed in these affirmations. As proof of this, there are many stories about failure which later became an inspiration.

Triumph and failure are, in reality, fleeting moments. What really matters is the process, both internal and external. This exciting pursuit of something new sparks changes in us, which we must take advantage of. Remember that people are moldable. We all experience our own individual process through which we grow and move forward.

Sometimes the difference between a failure and a victory is perseverance. The problem is that some failures may leave us feeling hopeless. Therefore, reading stories about failure is not only exciting but it leaves us feeling hopeful, as they teach us that second chances are possible.

Below, we’ll be sharing three inspiring stories about failure. Enjoy!

1. Abraham Lincoln: A persevering man

Abraham Lincoln is perhaps the most important historical figure in the United States because he abolished slavery. He was the U.S. president twice. During his presidency, the American Civil War started, which resulted in the ultimate unity of U.S. territory.

We couldn’t talk about inspiring stories about failure without mentioning Lincoln. Although he experienced rough times, he succeeded. He was born into a very poor family and had to work since he was seven years old in order to support his family. His mother died when he was only nine. Lincoln wasn’t able to go to school, but he taught himself everything he needed to know to become a lawyer.

A portrait of Abraham Lincoln.

However, his political career wasn’t exactly what you’d call ‘successful’. Several times, he was defeated in his aspirations to get elected. He also went bankrupt when he was 24 years old and spent the following 17 years of his life paying debts. His fiancée suddenly passed away, which led him to suffer from a nervous breakdown. Thanks to his immense will, he was able to keep on fighting until he finally became a decisive figure in the history of his country and the world.

2. Arianna Huffington: One of the most inspiring stories about failure

Arianna Huffington was born in Athens, Greece, in 1950. Her parent’s separation definitely scarred her during her childhood. She studied economics at Girton College in Cambridge, where she stood out for her leadership skills. Later on, she moved to the United States, where she got married to a congressman. The end of her marriage marked a before and after in her life.

At that time, she decided to write a book, which was rejected by 26 editors. As a consequence, Arianna worked tirelessly to project her work and, thus, gain a better position. As a result, she collapsed. In 2007, she fainted due to chronic fatigue. This led her to rethink what she was doing.

She decided to do what she liked best and do it without putting too much pressure on herself to be successful. She started a blog, which years later became a communication emporium: the HuffPost. As of now, many consider her one of the most influential women in the world. This is one of the greatest and most inspiring stories about failure.

3. Frank McCourt: From homeless to celebrity

Frank McCourt is the author of the well-known novel Angela’s Ashes. It became so famous that Alan Parker directed its film version, which premiered in 1999. This work is an autobiographical piece, through which McCourt narrates the overwhelming misadventures he has endured. To summarize, his family only experienced misery. His father was an alcoholic who abandoned him and his brothers.

Frank McCourt's life is one of the most inspiring stories about failure.

In fact, some of his siblings died due to the difficult conditions they faced every day. They lived in precarious conditions; they only had a latrine and practically nothing to eat. Frank had to start working at a very young age whilst going to school at the same time. He didn’t even have shoes to wear. He also suffered from typhus and almost died.

At age 19, and after carefully saving thanks to his work as a postman, he achieved his lifelong dream: to return to the United States, where he was originally from. There, he became a great writer. His most famous work, Angela’s Ashes, won him the Pulitzer Prize in 1999.

These are just a few incredibly inspiring stories about failure. As you can see, perseverance is the common denominator in all of them. Those who work hard and don’t give up when an obstacle comes their way are those who end up thriving.