Abraham Lincoln and Failures

Abraham Lincoln

A man who was acquainted with failure.

It dogged him all his life.

In 1832 he was defeated for the legislature.
In 1833 his business failed.
In 1836 he had a nervous breakdown.
In 1843 he lost the nomination for Congress.
In 1854 he was defeated for the Senate.
In 1856 he lost the nomination for vice president.
Then, in I860, he was elected president.

Lincoln was well prepared for the defeats and setbacks that bruised the nation during the Civil War years. Another man might have collapsed under the ordeal, but not Lincoln. Failure and setback had taught him how to ride out the storms of discouragement. Recall some setback that we weathered well. "God selects his own instruments, and sometimes they are queer ones; for instance, he chose me to steer the ship through a great Crisis."     

-Abraham Lincoln



Erwin M. Soukup has compiled what he terms "The Seven Steps to Stagnation":

1. We've never done it that way before.
2. We're not ready for that.
3. We are doing all right without trying that.
4. We tried it once before.
5. We don't have money for that.
6. That's not our job.
7. Something like that can't work.

Soukup admits that "there's probably an eighth step, but we've never looked it up before."