Scary Secret To Success

How to be a successful in life and as an entrepreneur by reframing failure.

My wife was telling friends a story about how our daughter, Maggie, took a lot longer to walk than our first two kids. It wasn’t because she had something wrong with her.

It was because she never tried to walk. She didn’t have to because her older brother and sister would bring her toys.

They meant well, but by bringing the toys to her, they never gave her a chance to try to walk and, in the process, fail.

And when you don’t give someone a chance to fail, they don’t have the chance to succeed.

Ok, you’re probably wondering…

“Corey, what in the sam hell does this have to do with me and becoming successful?”


Here’s why…

Secret To Success

Ask almost any successful person, and they’ll tell you that failure is the first step to success.

“No progress is possible without trial and error. Not in business, not in science, not in nature. Without failure, there is no learning, no progress, and no success.”

Naval Ravikant, Entrepreneur, Investor, CEO, and Co-founder of AngelList

When you were learning to walk, you didn’t “just start walking.” You had to fall, over and over, to build leg strength and get a feel for balance.

So the longer you wait to try and fail, the longer it takes to walk.

And if you don’t try, you’ll never walk.

So, doesn’t it make sense to fail?

And doesn’t it make sense to fail as fast and as much as possible?

[your head should be nodding right now]

But part of you is still thinking…

“But Corey, failing sucks.”


From grade school through to work life, we are conditioned by teachers, parents, and bosses to believe that failing is bad.

The fear of failure can be paralyzing and very hard to overcome.

I know because it ruled much of my early life and still pops its head up when I’m making important decisions.

So, one way to overcome the fear of failure is to reframe it as a shortcut to success.

“I've lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I've been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

Micheal Jordan, the greatest pro basketball player ever?!

The faster you fail, the faster you succeed.

Another way to reframe failure is to think of it as learning.

During a conversation the other day, my friend Samantha Postman used an acronym for the word fail;

First Attempt In Learning. 

Both of these are game-changers and really help take the pressure off.

Remember This

So, if you want success in anything, stop preventing yourself from failing. Get used to it and lean into it.

I know, easier said than done.

But now you have a few tools.

When you start having heart palpitations thinking about taking a chance, remember the following.

  1. Failure is a shortcut to success.

  2. You’re just learning. i.e., F.A.I.L. “First Attempt In Learning."

Now, get out there and start failing.

Fail fast!

Louden Swain

In the movie “Vision Quest” a wrestler named Louden Swain started his senior year by announcing a crazy goal. He was going to drop a dangerous amount of weight so that he could wrestle the best wrestler in the state.

This guy….

[press play]

Well, nobody thought it was a good idea because, well, he might fail and ruin his life.

Instead of listening to the naysayers, he got pissed…

[press play]

Now THAT’S how you respond.

And did you catch what Louden said to the Otto guy just before the climb…

“…wrestling is not a team sport, when you’re out there on the mat with another guy who’s quicker and faster than you, there’s not a hell of a lot a team can do for you.”

Couldn’t you say the same thing about our paths to success?

Sure, at the end of the day, you will need help along the way. But ultimately, the only person that’s out there on the mat day in and day out is you.

Why not fail on your own terms?

Think about it.



P.S. For a motivational pick me up, here’s the John Waite tune Louden was climbing the peg board to…

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