How to turn your biggest failures into your most triumphant successes.
I want to tell you a story because it’s really illustrative and it demonstrates a principle that I think is so powerful in life. Yesterday, after a long journey, I’m happy to share that I graduated with my master’s degree from New York University. It took me about four years to complete a two-year program, but I was a little busy growing my businesses and advancing my career. If you rewind about seven years when I originally applied to graduate schools to complete a dual business and law degree, I got rejected from all six schools. Every school I applied to rejected me. Nobody would give me a chance based on my history and a terrible and tragic accident in college. I was devastated. I sat there reading that last letter wondering what am I going to do with my life, career, future, and dreams.
I was scared. I was down and out. I lost confidence. I was lost. I didn’t know how to respond at that moment. What I did remember is that I had been through far worse. I had been through harder times. I had gotten through similarly difficult circumstances. If I didn’t give up on myself this time like I didn’t back then, I too would make it through this challenge. So I took all of that negative energy and emotion and started to shift my mindset. I started to shift the perspective. I took that and I turned it into a mobilizing force and relentless commitment to my vision for my future. I wanted to contribute to society and the world, make an impact, be successful, and redefine my character and legacy. At that moment seven years ago I decided I would be an entrepreneur in every sense of the word.
Learn How to Take Control
I realized I had to take control of my future, my destiny, and that nobody else was going to do that anymore. I wasn’t going to let hiring committees, HR managers, or admissions committees at schools tell me if I wasn’t worthy enough to do what I wanted to do. I was going to chase my dreams and accomplish my goals. That realization right there changed everything for me. What I did was shift my mindset and turn all the negative emotions into something positive so that I could accomplish and achieve something great. This changed the trajectory of my career and life. That was one of three or four pivotal moments for me.
From that point on I decided that I was going to go out into the world. I was going to figure it all out. I didn’t know how yet, but I knew I was going to do it and I wasn’t going to give up on myself. Fast forward, and now I have a couple of years experience in real estate, my license, built a brokerage practice, launched to team, got into hospitality development, got into real estate investment, and started to diversify and build some early successes. I applied to the best program in the world for real estate investment development. This was the Schack Institute of Real Estate in New York University. This was the only program I applied to, and I got into their two year master’s program. They took a chance on me back in 2014 and I got in.
What normally takes two years, took me four and a half, but again, I was busy building my businesses. I lived three hours North of Manhattan at the time and was commuting while trying to build these things. I had to take time off, semesters off, and it was very challenging. But the rewarding feeling of being able to walk across the stage, virtually I may add by Zoom, with my mom next to me, was one of the most rewarding and heartfelt achievements that I’ve ever accomplished. It showed me that when you put your mind to something, and commit fully you can achieve whatever you want in this life. No matter the circumstances, no matter the challenges, no matter how high the walls are, if you’re committed enough you will find a way to break through and be successful.
In hindsight one of my biggest failures turned out to be one of my biggest successes. This was the power of manufacturing a failure into a success. Taking setbacks and challenges, and turning them into motivating forces to accomplish more. To be more aligned with my purpose, vision, and to embolden my resolve to achieve my goals. When I’m told no and faced with a challenge I take that and I start to lay out a plan. I use that as inspiration. I lay out a strategy and timeline to take massive action every day towards my goal. That’s an example of how you can take those failures, and turn them into successes.
Control Your Response in Difficult Situations
When people say you’re not good enough, or you don’t get a job, or you don’t get into your top school, none of that matters. What matters is how you respond to that. Bounce back stronger and more committed. More resolved and pivot to keep moving forward. Getting denied from all of those graduate schools was one of the best things that’s ever happened to me because I would graduated a couple of years ago, been working for somebody else, and have much more student debt. Instead, that door slamming shut in my face allowed me to go be an entrepreneur and pursue things that I want to be involved in. Things that I’m passionate about and really enjoy. This is a result I can confidently say I am more happy and fulfilled for.
Sometimes the path we think we need to be on is not the path that we should be on. And that’s okay. We need to be nimble and flexible. When I realized that every door shut opens a new door that’s where the most valuable and powerful lessons are learned. If you like this message, this story, this metaphor for motivation, life, and achievement, then please drop a comment below. Share this with somebody who needs an uplifting message, a story of redemption, turnaround, commitment, and inspiration. That’s what I’m trying to do here. I want to equip, educate, and inspire people to achieve their best life and go after their dreams. Never take no as the final answer. Thank you. To your success and happiness. I’ll talk to you soon.