Life lessons to be learned from Spanx
Start a new school year (and every day) off right
I recently heard a podcast interview with Sara Blakely, uber-successful-founder-and-now-billionaire of women’s undergarments, Spanx.
When the interviewer asked the keys to her success, she noted several. One Blakely shared was that prior to creating her patent for Spanx, she was a door-to-door salesperson for fax machines. In this position, she learned how to take rejection and how to keep persevering to get “just one” to say, “Yes.”
Powerful stuff that success is made of.
The one key she noted that had the most significance, however was something that her father said to her–somewhat of his mantra for living.
From as early as she could remember, she recalled her dad saying, “Sara, I want you to fail at many things.” And routinely upon seeing her after work each day, her father would ask, “So, Sara, what did you fail at today?”
Blakely described the time when she told her dad that her end-of-the-driveway lemonade stand failed miserably. His response was, “Great going!” followed with a high-five and an exuberant, “Thanks for trying!”
She shared that because of her father’s constant encouragement to try new things, she never associated a stigma with failure nor did she ever think that a failed attempt meant that she was a failure.
I finished the podcast and contemplated–in awe and wonderment.
So often we are afraid to try new things.
We allow our fear of failure to be bigger than our desire to try something new.
When we do that, we miss opportunities for real growth–character building kind of growth. We allow our ego to take over and cloud our vision that we are not defined by an outcome.
So as you prepare to send your kids off to school each day or as you put your final stroke of lipstick on in the rearview mirror before heading into work, sunshine, ask yourself, “What new and exciting thing will I be successful at trying today?”
I want to celebrate your successful failures with you. Please share with me your stories about your (or your child’s) attempts at trying new things and what important life and character building lessons were gleaned from those experiences.
Who knows–maybe you will be approaching Sara Blakely with the next $500 million gross producing invention?
You know where to find me.
With love and light today and always,