F***: A Celebration

It’s got four letters, starts with F, and makes polite company cringe when they hear it. Everyone does it, successful people more often than most.

Case in point: Rob Slee, owner of private equity firm Robertson Foley, author of the Private Capital Markets textbook used in top-rated MBA programs, and founder of Midas Institutes, says he’s done it more times than he can count, and learned something from it each time. In fact, he says his key to success in business is figuring out how to do the F-deed quickly and cheaply.

Albert Einstein did it in elementary school, Winston Churchill in sixth grade. Henry Ford did it professionally five times, Michael Jordan did it over and over on the basketball court, and Babe Ruth was famous for doing it on the baseball field before he became famous for home runs. Thomas Edison is known for having done it at least a thousand times before his historic light bulb moment.

So let’s stop treating it like it’s a dirty word. Let’s hold our heads up high when we say we’ve done it. Let’s smile and do it again and again and again and again… because without it, life would be boring, bland, and lacking in adventure and achievement.

So go ahead. Do it. Because the only way to true success is to try, and to fail, and to try and try and try and fail and fail and fail and fail… and to keep getting back up and try again.

Fail: It may be four letters long, but it’s not a dirty word any more. What was your biggest failure recently? What did you learn from it? What are you going to try next?

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