Success teaches nothing

Success teaches nothing. Only failure provides for learnable lessons.

You are a stock market neophyte. You pick five stocks from the NASDAQ. Each one doubles in a month. You sell them, doubling your money.

Did you learn anything?

You’ve never skied. You ride to the top of the lift, get off, strap on your skies and push off making it to the bottom in a single go.

Did you learn anything?

Your father is a Mob boss. He has lieutenants over for dinner. You bake a cake. You’ve never baked a cake before. You forget the flavoring. Nobody complains.

Did you learn anything?

You’re hired to sell steel for an iron mfg company. A hurricane takes out the only competition. You sell more steel than the company has ever sold.

Did you learn anything?

Enough already! Sheesh, we get the point. Success through luck teaches nothing. Only failure, adjustment, and retry serves to teach. The 1001 ways how NOT to make a lightbulb. The School of HarkKnocks. The quitters never win and winners never quit.

Of course, eventually, when you are successful, and you succeed, the fact that you failed often and spectacularly may have been forgotten or ignored or even suppressed. And that’s sad. Perhaps we should cheer the losers, the failures, those resolute folk who fail, learn from their failure, and still strive to succeed. Can you imagine booing the easy winners?

Would you rather be lucky or tenacious?


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