The father of the self-help movement, Dale Breckenridge Carnegie (1888-1955) knew all about failure.
Born in poverty on a Maryville, Missouri farm, he failed at everything he tried: college, farming, teaching, acting, sales, and journalism. And, to top it all, he lost all his savings in the stock market crash of 1929.
All that failure taught him optimism. "First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it," he said. "Then proceed to improve on the worst."
"For the good" of his soul, Carnegie studied failure... and success. He researched the success of his heroes-- Abraham Lincoln and Benjamin Franklin, gathered quotations and anecdotes, then wrote his famous self-help book How to Win Friends & Influence People (1936).
"You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years of trying to get other people interested in you," he revealed.
An estimated 50 million copies of Carnegie's books have been sold in 38 languages. Today his training courses continue to thrive.
"It isn't what you have, or who you are, or where you are, or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about," he said.
Give your best and everything will fall into place.