Thomas Edison: the biggest loser

Thomas Alva Edison
Thomas Alva Edison (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“A failure establishes only this: that our determination to succeed was not strong enough.”
– Bovee
“Sheer persistence is the difference between success and failure.”
– Donald Trump
“More men fail though lack of purpose than lack of talent.” – Bill Sunday

Thomas Edison probably failed more times than any other scientist/inventor of the last two centuries. However, he also succeeded more times than any other inventors. He received patents for well over a thousand useful inventions.

Babe Ruth struck out more times in a year than any other person in his baseball league. However, he also hit more home runs than anyone else.

This means that we don’t need to fear failure. In fact, if we learn from our failures, they can be very good things. Edison tried over 10,000 ways to design a long lasting light bulb. When asked if all those failures discouraged him he said “I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

“How many people are completely successful in every department of life? Not one. The most successful people are the ones who learn from their mistakes and turn their failures into opportunities.” – Zig Ziglar

Sometimes failure makes us stronger. Michael Jordan was cut from the varsity basketball team when he was a freshman, and the agony he experienced from that pushed him to work much harder than he already was. The player that beat him for the top spot must have been outstanding. If that player was not very good, Jordan would have made the team without learning to put extra effort into his goals and dreams. He might not have been such an outstanding player in college.

Abraham Lincoln failed many times, he went bankrupt, failed in political races many different times and married a woman who was apparently mentally ill. She was known for throwing coffee in his face in public, going on bizarre spending sprees and being especially difficult to get along with. But during one of the worst times in his marriage he wrote the Gettysburg Address which stands even today as a masterpiece. His years of being president of the US were extremely difficult, a man not as accustomed to trouble might have buckled under the pressure and let the US split into two countries.

Don’t let your failures get you down, they can raise you up.


  1. EXCELLENT words – love it all. So simply delivered & great example.

    I’ve just decided to make a side bar on my blogs, being ‘Highly recommended article this week’ – & put a link to this post on it. I just might do that regularly now – you have inspired this idea : YOU.

    Thank you 🙂 I want everyone to read this!

  2. You’ve got to love Edison’s approach. The only ways you can possibly ‘fail’ is by not accepting that you’re human and you can get it wrong – by not learning from your previous attempts.

  3. If you haven’t failed at least once, you haven’t really tried. Failure opens the path to success. You realize the ways to suceed through failure!!!! Nice post!!

  4. Interesting to know about Abraham Lincoln.
    I think if don’t fail at least once there’s no way you enjoy to the fullest the success, no way!

  5. Have you ever had a money when someone has told you exactly what you needed to hear without asking for it? That’s what has just happened to here, thanks!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s