It is never too late
A long time ago there was a man in the United States, brought up in an ordinary middle-class family. His father was a loving family man and worked in his farm. When he was 5 years old, on a summer afternoon his father came home with a fever. He saw his father in pain, but could not understand what was going on. That day doctor was called twice, he could see from far his mother crying. He got scared, that was the first time he saw his mother cry. Later that day his father died. He was too young to realize what has happened, but will always remember that summer afternoon, all his life. After his father’s death, his mother started stitching clothes of other people and also got a job in a factory. At seven, he learned how to cook, to feed his younger siblings, as his mom was away working.
One day he baked his first bread, he wanted to show this to his mother, but she was working in a factory three miles away. He grabbed the bread and took his five year old brother and sister along with him. Three of them walked three miles across the field, so he could show his mother his first loaf of bread. When they reached factory, he started searching for his mother, his mother saw him so far, carrying a loaf of bread in his hand and having a huge smile on his face. She came, held the bread in her hand and gave him a big hug.
At age 10, he began work as a helper in the farmland and then took up job painting horse carriages. He left school after sixth grade, so he could work full-time. Life moved on job after job, he sometimes worked as a conductor, then joined the United States Army for a while, then cleaned trains and even worked as a helper in railway construction. May be he was never satisfied, maybe he was still searching.
He was 18, when he met a beautiful girl they fell in love, soon got married and had three beautiful children, but one day he got fired from his job. Once he reached home his wife was gone, there was a note from his wife’s brother saying “she had no business marrying a no-good fellow like you.” He then convinced her to come back. Later, studied and practiced law for some years and after that even became an insurance salesman, all this while moving from one career to another. At age of 30, he established a ferry boat company; the ferry was an instant success. He sold the shares of the company and started a new one, wanting to do something bigger.
He establishes a company manufacturing oil lamps, hired sales people across the country. The business initially started well, with some new orders coming in every day. He felt yes finally I have made it, but destiny had some other plans. A company named Delco introduced electric lamps and the venture failed. Then he started working as a salesman in Michelin tires, but their too, lost his job when the manufacturing plant was shut down. He again started looking for some work and travelled to different cities, to find it.
While coming back, with no money in his pocket, he was looking for a lift to get back home. A man stopped and picked him up in his big car. He shared with the stranger his story, how he is looking for some work. That stranger turned out to be the state manager of Standard Oil. The manager asked him “would you wish to run a service station?” He had no experience of what it takes to run a service station but he said yes. For six years, he managed the place successfully, he sold more fuel than anywhere in the state, but then the Great Depression came, his station closed down like many other businesses at that time.
As luck would have it, at that time Shell Company offered him to run a service station, rent free. At the age of 40, he opened the new service station also started serving food. People loved his recipes; he didn’t have any seating in the service station so people would eat in his adjacent living quarters. The business grew big. He later bought a motel nearby and converted it into a 140 seats restaurant. Time went on, he was finally successful but when he was 63, his booming restaurant took a massive hit. A new interstate highway was built which took traffic off the route where his restaurant was situated. His business collapsed, his restaurant was auctioned in front of him, he could not do anything to save it, and he was almost bankrupt it was his life’s biggest failure. But he still wanted to try all these failures have taught him one thing, not to give up.
Now, He decided to sell his recipe to various restaurants, at a small cost. He borrowed $87, went door to door to try and sell his recipe. People told him he’s getting old, he should retire. What will he achieve in trying to sell a good for nothing recipe at such an old age but he did what he always did in his life, he moved forward. He lived in his car for two years, but everywhere he went there were rejections one after the other. He was rejected 1009 times.
Finally at the age of 65, he met a restaurant owner; he cooked his recipe and made him eat it. The owner liked it, he said yes. Now decades after that one restaurant, the number has grown to over 20,000 restaurants across the world with annual sales reaching over $23 billion. All 20,000 of them serving an equivalent recipe which a 65 old man was trying to sell and was rejected over 1,000 times. He is “Colonel Sanders” founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC).
If he would have retired or accepted failure, there would not have been any KFC. Hundreds and thousands of jobs that were created because of him would never have been created. We don’t even attempt to achieve our dreams because we fear failure or remember the failures of the past once we tried and failed. We don’t realize, failure is inevitable. Throughout history there has never been a single human being, who has never faced failure, so why should we fear what is and what always will be there if your heart is pumping, if your mind is prepared to simply accept challenges.
It’s never too late to try to achieve your dream; it’s never too late to learn something new. It’s never too late to experience something beautiful. It’s never too late to keep on trying, no matter how many times you fail, it’s never too late.
also read Believe in Yourself