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View Adversity as an Opportunity to Strengthen Your Resolve to Succeed

By Thomas J. Stanley on Jan 28th, 2014 in Mentor's Corner

Success is more akin to a marathon than a sprint.  In fact, for many, success only emerged after they were able to negotiate their way through a series of gauntlets of adversity.  I was once again reminded of this after reading a Wall Street Journal article appropriately titled, Entrepreneur Let No Impediment Stop Him: Out of Work Consultant Started His Own Company After Discovering His Stutter Put Off Employers. The article profiled the trials and tribulations of Kevin Hartford. 

After his successful consulting business went belly up, Mr. Hartford began searching for a white collar corporate job.  During years of searching he never found one.  He maintained that prospective employers were turned off because of his “stuttering problem”. 

For several years he did odd jobs, . . . delivering packages, gluing together medical supplies, . . . sorting mail, . . . and mowing lawns.

Then about 10 years ago he and a partner took over a struggling small business that made metal parts.  Today the business is thriving, sales in 2013 were $6M.  Mr. Hartford overcame adversity including an early business failure and a speech disability.  And according to the article [it cites Labor Department data] workers with a disability are nearly twice as likely to be self-employed than those without disabilities.  Many self made millionaires who own businesses (83%, The Millionaire Mind) report that they selected self employment because it allowed them to capitalize fully on the abilities and aptitudes that they possessed.

A self made deca millionaire profiled in The Millionaire Mind, Mr. Warren, elegantly stated:

Frankly, had I been able to get a decent job, I would have never gone into business for myself . . . I was forced into self employment.   I didn’t opt for self employment.  If I had the credentials (to be an executive/employee) I would have accepted mediocrity.

There is a reason why the self employed have nearly five times the median net worth than those who work for others.  


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