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(from Failing Forward, Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success by John C. Maxwell)

Growing up, I thought that failure came in a moment. The best example I can think of is taking a test. If you got an F, it meant you failed. But Iíve come to realize that failure is a process. If you flunk a test, it doesnít mean you failed a one-time event. The F shows that you neglected the process leading up to the test.

In 1997, I wrote a book called The Success Journey. It offers an overview on what it means to be successful. In it I define success in these terms:

Knowing your purpose in life
Growing to reach your potential
Sowing seeds that benefit others

The thesis of the book is that success is not a destinationónot a place where you arrive one day. Instead, it is the journey you take. And whether you succeed comes from what you do day to day. In other words, success is a process.

Failure works the same way. Itís not someplace you arrive. Just as success is not an event, neither is failure. Itís how you deal with life along the way. No one can conclude that he has failed until he breathes his last breath. Until then, heís still in process, and the jury is still out.

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