To be successful, learn to distinguish between failure and temporary defeat

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Temporary defeat is not the same as permanent failure!


Are you also quick in using ‘the f-word’: f for failure? Then make it clear to yourself that you need to distinguish between temporary defeat and (constant) failure.


It is OK to be defeated at times: it happens to all of us, even to the best ones.


Einstein practically said about himself that 99% of the results he came up with can be considered mistakes/wrong (= what we would classify as a ‘failure’) but at the 100th time he succeeded. Thomas Edison tried more than 10.000 times before he found a way to create the incandescent light bulb. I am sure that also people like Henry Ford or nowadays Elon Musk or Richard Branson made many mistakes and felt ‘defeated’ at times.


What they didn’t do, though, is to let it become a permanent failure. Like a boxer, they went down and maybe were even quite close to be “knocked out”. But rather than staying down they got up at least one time more often than they went down.


Here at WP Buddy we’re also making mistakes and need to continually improve, be it with our article rating plugin for WordPress (Purple Heart Rating Plugin) or for other products of ours.


Napoleon Hill was right when he stated the following two aspects about failure in his 1937 all-time bestseller Think and Grow Rich*:

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.”


“Before success comes in any man’s life, he is sure to meet with much temporary defeat, and, perhaps, some failure. When defeat overtakes a man, the easiest and most logical thing to do is to quit. That is exactly what the majority of men do. More than five hundred of the most successful men this country has ever known told the author their greatest success came just one step beyond the point at which defeat had overtaken them.”


Have you had this experience of arriving at ‘failure’ and then found out that it was only temporary defeat? How do you cope with failure/defeat? Let me know in the comments below, or by rating the article through the rating plugin below and by using the feedback window that will open afterwards!


Regards from Greece,

aka ‘Marketing Buddy’

The author, David, is in charge for marketing at WP-Buddy, a small innovative enterprise that specializes in the development of WordPress plugins and themes. All the tools of WP-Buddy are 100% focused on making your own online endeavors a success. Find out more about your WP Buddy Team.

*Full disclosure: The link to “Think and Grow Rich” (TAGR) is an affiliate link, meaning: if in the end you buy it by using this link we will earn a small commission. Please note: I have been a huge fan of and believer in the philosophy behind TAGR  myself since 2010 and therefore can surely recommend it. For me it was a life-changer, and I hope it can do the same for you. Feel free to check out the book on amazon etc even without using the affiliate link. I am happy either way as long as I can provide you with useful information 🙂


picture credit ‘Crossroads: Success or Failure’: flickr user Chris Potter


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One thought on “To be successful, learn to distinguish between failure and temporary defeat

  1. Napoleon Hill really rules. And I am also big fan of Elon Musk. For sure people like him are role models for every one who wants to succeed.


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