Getting Knocked Down


We all get knocked down from time to time—it’s part of what makes life interesting… always keeping us alert and on our toes.

I recently shared a perspective in a keynote presentation I did that helped reshape my view of obstacles and life’s difficulties; this might help you too…

My wife’s best friend has a friend whose husband, I am embarrassed to say, I envied. He had the life I wanted. We are close in age and both came from the Bay Area of San Francisco.

After several failed businesses, he started an electronics store called “Jacks.” The stores were relatively successful and were bought out for a good sum. He then invested that money into commercial real estate in the San Diego Valley, before the boom. He ended up owning several buildings that made him tens of millions, maybe hundreds of millions.

We would go to his parties at the home he custom built in Rancho Santa Fe (one of the richest ZIP codes in the county). The home, estate really, was more than 10,000 square feet on an amazing piece of sprawling land and it was designed in just the style I love.

His cars were amazing and he also had a yacht in the harbor and a private plane. He was also a good-looking guy and had a beautiful family he adored and who adored him. He was warm, friendly and always the life of the party. I wanted his life. In my head (privately, of course) I would wish I was Gary Boyd.

A year and a half ago he had a cough that became increasingly worse. When he went to the doctor he was diagnosed with throat cancer. He never smoked, lived relatively healthy—it was completely unexpected. He had finally arrived, was living the life he never could have imagined, and then this.

His family had to watch him slowly and painfully wither away until he finally died seven months ago.

Now, every day I say, thank God I am not Gary Boyd.

Here is the point: No matter what obstacle I encounter now, no matter what setback I experience, I have a whole new perspective on just how “catastrophic” the situation really is. If I take a risk and am embarrassed, if I call someone and they reject me, if I lose a bunch of money in an investment, if I wreck my car, lose my house (not that I have!), no matter what obstacle comes my way, I say, “At least I am not Gary Boyd.”

Point is, as long as you are on the right side of the dirt, no obstacle really matters.

We all experience failure, setbacks, disappointments and obstacles. And yes it hurts, and that is okay. We are human. Rejection, failure and letdowns hurt humans. It’s part of the deal.

Now the difference is how long you let it keep you down.

Here is the evolution I have gone through and recommend for you. What used to bum me out for 2 weeks I eventually whittled down to 2 days. Then I got it down to 2 hours and then 20 minutes. Now when I am knocked down, I give myself about 2 minutes to sulk and then I brush myself off and get back on the horse. I also look to replace the experience with something positive. I never allow myself to end the session or day with a defeat. I will keep working until I can gain some kind of victory.

So it’s okay to get knocked down; its even good for you—it’s the beginning of growth. And it’s okay that it smarts a bit. And it’s okay to give yourself some recovery time. Now just try and reduce the time it knocks you out. And get over the idea that life sucks for you. Remember, you are not Gary Boyd.

What do you do when you get knocked down? What do you do to lick your wounds and get yourself back on the horse? Share your tips in the comments below.



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  16. We were there when TPN came crashing down and i think a lot of people got hurt in what was surely a ponzi scheme (even though I refuted that at the time) I would be interested in knowing how Darren views that enterprise and how he rebounded from the crash. I’m afraid that the now more cynical me suspects that he got out with some cash from being an “early adopter”. Yes? Comments?

  17. I think when the challenges come in terms of blows as per the boxing ring. Maybe we have to lie down first and take the hand offered in order to get up.

  18. In January I developed serious back pain and have been struggling with the rehab of coming to terms with having a problem that limits my capabilities. On top of this the mounting financial burdens the family is facing seem endless. At the moment is very difficult to see a way out. Yes I am dealing with it with going for the physio. But the financial crisis seems insumountable as both my partner and I are nearing retirment age. He felt that I should sell my property and pay off his bond and then we would manage better, but I would be left rather a dependant person on him. The two together are rather exhausting and it is very difficult with the day to day demands to find a solution. Most of the time I have been upbeat and met the challanges with gusto. I am finding this rather tiring.

  19. I take the blows and sometimes it does take the wind out of me but i relize that the sun will shine tomorrow now I know it’s not easy to bear but I think at least I don’t have to live this day again.

  20. Rose,

    Please, if you share with the community what’s really bothering you one of us may be able to help!

    All the best,


  21. Mr. Hardy, please tell me that “Gary Boyd” is a fictitious name you created to mask the identity of the real person who amassed such wealth and affluence before succuming to throat cancer. If it is not, then I must ask you this: how does Mr. Boyd’s family feel about your using the mantra, “I’m glad I’m not Gary Boyd” as a backhanded way to celebrate your own good fortune?
    You did admit in the article that you envied this gentleman. Your mantra, “I’m glad I’m not Gary Boyd,” shows me the depth of this envy, for it is devoid of compassion for the family and the suffering they experienced seeing their loved one wither away. It is glee disguised as sorrow, in my opinion.
    You have shown me, Mr. Hardy, that common courtesy can sometimes elude the best of us. Perhaps such deeply private thoughts about being glad you weren’t Mr. Boyd should have stayed just that — private thoughts.
    Thank you for reading my comments.

  22. Here I sit unemployed and uncertain of my future. Now I find this bog. I NEED THIS!!. Some real people who give me hope. Thanks for being here. My mind is eating this up . Love all of you. So great to read this stuff. Success is now on my mind instead of “Woe is me!” Thanks a million.

  23. What a joy it is to be part of a blog that is filled with like minded, positive and wonderful folks. As i read the comments, good energy exudes. Darren, i first saw you on Youtube during the tribute to Jim Rohn. Your honesty, your intellect, your genuineness, was so refreshing and it also reflects in your magazine.
    I just discovered your blog today and am truly grateful.


  24. Seems you are on the right track now, Adam, and that’s a great start! Kudos to you finally CHOOSING to get back up, dust yourself off and be on your way to an even greater future! Stick with us here and you will learn even more about creating the best possible life for you and for your kids. Glad to have you aboard, Adam! :)

  25. Darren,
    I really have not been in the state of mind to read this article until now, however I have saved it since April knowing that when I was ready I would read it. Today was that day. I am also glad that I am not Gary Boyd, although at times during these past 7 months, I sometimes thought it would be easier. In January my wife of 18 years decided that she did not want to be married any longer. In February I found out she had been seeing someone else since last fall. I have young children that mean the world to me and it completely devistated me when I had to leave the house. In March, my business partner found a way to wrestle away the large company we owned for almost 10 years, leaving me with virtually nothing financially…..If it wasn’t for God and his grace, there is no way I would of been able to handle this. The divorce process continues as what little financial resources remain, the soon to be ex is determined to spend.
    What stuck me about your article is that it is ok to give yourself some time to be the victim, to feel your setback, BUT limit that time and focus on what you still have and how you can triumph over your adversity. What I failed to do was to set a time limit as to when I was no longer going to allow my circumstances to determine my future.
    Thanks for the wake up call!

  26. Hi Darren,
    I am a 25yr old boy from INDIA and from a small ISLAND “ANDAMAN AND NICOBAR i thinck you would have heard of it TSUNAMI came and destroyed allot there just beside SUMATRA but its in india, actually should be called a man according to my age but to my size boy would be the best option, jokes apart i have been following you and this site for a very long time and used to read allot from this site and also entrepreneurship magazine and also always try finding some that fires me, i am working as a tecnical support executive in “chennai” i moved from my islands to grow, and frankly speeking i always had big dreams to be a business tycoon so always thought of starting something on my own but you know the family reaction and also the friends so still had the same mindset and also there was a seed money problem and that was the reason why i joined a call centre so finally a week ago i started a garments,shoes business that i purchase from manufacturer and send it to my ISLANDS for sale, my brother and my mother had taken the responsibity to sell it ,now plz let me know how can i save and started something else faster because as LES BROWN SAY” YOU GOTTA BE HUNGRY” so i am offcourse started late but i am serious plz let me know how to be a millioniare in INDIA. BY THE WAYS SORRY BUT LIKE ALL YOUR POST ITS REALLY “INSPIRING”.

  27. getting knocked down is what am not letting happen and working on that…learned the lessons and move forward.

  28. This is a reply to Betsy:
    Its worrying to hear that your son has no optimism in life, but its good that sure there is a way out of it. I have my doubts that seeing your son not as he now is can help you on a long run (although believing he can make it is very natural and sure will give him strength). The nice part of this advice could be in separating person from action, that is not to see him as looser even if he lost 10 times (cause there are the reasons for loosing, and they are not personality-related).
    I am now 30 and very positive person, but most of my early years I was very depressed… I can share what helped me to overcome my sad feelings:
    1. The sincere questions a got from other people, who where willing just to LISTEN (WITHOUT giving any advice not to mention preaching) , like why you are not happy?, what keeps you sad?, is that your only problem?, how important to you is solving it? what can you do about it?, what have you done about?, why you failed?, why you stopped attempting? what could help you to regain your power/positiveness? how can you get that? when will you get that?
    its basically finding and NAMING loudly the major core of the problem (where being pessimistic is just a symptom), being well aware of it, and later slowly looking for a ways to solve it (once you well know the problem, the solutions can come up themselves), also waitin patiently for results, learning from mistakes, changing ways of attempts, and again waiting patiently for results.
    The people who do this type of questioning very well are known as “life coaches”. I took some free coaching sessions and it work for me well, I was so glad someone was there to listen to me, help me to concentrate on my possibilities, and seemed to believe in me. (although it was difficult at the beginning to trust unknown person with details of my soul). The name of the problem can be unclear at beggining, but with time and continuous effort it will become more and more clear.
    2. Getting the freedom of action, but also taking the responsibilities.
    Might it be true, or just it seems so to me from your post, that you can be a little overprotective towards him? Challenges and independence in going for own goals could help young men feel more inspiration in everyday life.
    Sometimes getting things too easy dis-motivates from constant goal seeking and give over-relaxed mood, that could lead to pesimism.
    3. Making achievable goals. The best motivators as far as I know are the personal goals, so its good to get clear what goals one has, how important are they for him and how ACHIEVABLE are they. Interesting note here, that once starting to make a personal goals they could keep changing on the go, so staying flexible and not to get dismotivated by the fact that goals have changed is a needful thing.

  29. That is really interesting. It gave me a number of ideas and I’ll be placing them on my website soon. I’m bookmarking your blog and I’ll be back. Thanks again!

  30. Katrina, what a lovely post. I lost my Mom to pancreatic cancer and that is when I changed my attitude. Life is too short for me to sit around and complain. I thank God everyday for being alive so I can enjoy the wonderful things he has given to us. I get the biggest kick now out of watching the birds outside my window. A couple of years ago I wouldn’t have even noticed the beauty! I still have setbacks but I am like you. I look at life differently now and I try not to complain.

  31. Thanks so much Darren for your inspiring words. In the last 5 years I have become a positive person who always looks on the bright side. You see, I lost both of my parents unexpectedly within 6 months of each other. After that experience I vowed to God that I would never complain again! Life is too short and when you have your health you have it all. My Mom always said that when I was young but I never got it! If I have a problem now I call them “setbacks” and instead of complaining I look for a solution and/or plan. I thank God first thing in the morning for giving me another day on this wonderful planet! When I went for a root canal a couple of months ago I was smiling at the dentist after he announced the news! I was even smiling after the root canal! A person can always get worse news from a doctor. Last Friday I slipped on the basement floor and when I went to the Emergency room I thanked the doctor when he said I had fractured my ankle but would not need surgery. Yeah! I have a cast and will have it on for a couple of weeks but again I remembered “It can always be worse”!

  32. Aw, this was a really quality post. In theory I’d like to write like this too – taking time and real effort to make a good article… but what can I say… I procrastinate alot and never seem to get something done.

  33. Hey how are you. I found your blog through Google and I just wanted to say that I think your writing is simply stunning! Thanks again for providing this content for free.

  34. I am grateful for this blog. Reading the comments and accounts of others experiences both comforts and inspires me.

    I too had my share of major setback: being shot at in my own store; my father cutting me off his will; going thru bankrupacy etc. Those time were rough.

    Thru my times of dispear and anguish, God somehow gave me courage to fight on and realize there is something better for me.

    Guys, I want to say thank you for every entry on this blog. Thank you for showing me that i am not alone.

  35. Thank you for your article. At one time, I was a high position government employee. Then thru bad mistakes, I lost my job, went to prison, came out, got ripped off, lost a house, lost life savings and now collect unemployment while working 10 hours a week on my way back up. I just found this Success magazine at a Bookman’s store yesterday. Then went online and found your article this morning. As I count on the Lord each day to meet our needs, I am pushing to get back up. Hope to see you on my way back.

  36. Hey Anthony…
    From what you wrote you should be grateful you’re out of that mess and away from that disgusting liar…(I could think of a few other adjectives for your ex).
    Stop being a whimp!!! (crying? WHY?)
    She was probably lying when she said she was a lesbo at six. It just seems anything
    disgusting is encouraged by the media nowadays (use your imagination…) and she went along…Her Problem! Not your’s…
    You didn’t waste any years…You got what you wanted for those years or YOU would have left first…

  37. There are a lot of successful “Gary Boyds” out there…
    For some reason I have never envied them…(And as long as they weren’t jerks I usually liked them…)
    People who are very successful are living proof of what it is possible to attain…
    In the end Gary got a bad break but he left this world knowing his family would be provided for.

    Gary left this world knowing he made it…And it sounded like he had balls, took a lot of chances and deserved his success…
    Is it better to live until 90 and never have achieved anything?

  38. I am so incredibly moved by what others have written here. It really just goes to show you how similar we are as people and how we all, for the most part, value the same things in life (health, family, connection, and, of course, precious time). People wrote such eloquent and inspired entries – I’m truly proud to be part of this human race. To add my two cents, I wanted to point you all to a song I wrote (no sales pitch; in fact, you can’t even buy it – it’s a demo). It’s called “We’re All The Same” – my big vision for it is to turn it into the next “We Are The World”) – you can go to my website,, click on CRee8 Music and go to pop songs. Music really is the universal language and I hope you enjoy it.
    Darren, you are a real inspiration. Your words ring so true and my wish for those words is that they spread throughout the world and start waking people up one person at a time.
    With much gratitude…..

  39. Andrew, I was also (very unexpectedly) laid off from a financial position when the market crashed. I can second that: it was humbling! I went from making more than enough to live on to being unemployed in a day. What made me turn my attitude around, though, was talking to my two best friends and my girlfriend (now wife). The next day I was job searching/networking. A couple weeks after unemployment I got hired part time to fold towels and teach taekwondo at a local gym. Talk about a step down!

    However, I took each step as a step forward. I moved up in the next few months into a sales position at the gym, and was able to network with people who bought memberships from me. Now, I’m in a job that I’m 100x happier in than when I was working in finance! I can tell that you’re a true entrepreneur, Andrew, so I wish you the best in your job search. Darren, I love this blog, and look forward to reading more of your posts.

  40. Great article!! Having just come off a long bout with unemployment; I might be faced with it again. Every blow gets me stronger and more focused on the things I really should be doing. The wounds are there but my inner strength and faith heals them quicker each time. It’s a great article if you’ve lost track of “moving on” and a great article when you need to remember “TO move on”

  41. Great Darren

    My prayer to Lord is to present me with adversities which can be used to my advantage.
    The best attitude is ‘This too shall pass’.
    Good Luck in all your endeavours.
    Thou art that !

  42. PERSPECTIVE seems to sum it all up. We can all look around and find examples where others have experienced tragedy and used it to create something, or someone, better. Victor Frankl, the creator of America’s Most Wanted, and Elizabeth Smart are only a few examples of how possible it is to actually turn pain into purpose. Each of these indivudals were able to get beyond trauma by asking the right questions such as “how can I use my experience to benefit others?” Each of them chose not to spend the rest of their lives asking the one question I feel to be the most useless in the human language; “why?” Instead, what resulted from each of their experiences most likely stemmed from having asked “how?” “what?” When I lost my left leg in 1986, little time was spent asking why and my more immediate focus became “what next?” Today, the attitude I continue to hold is that no matter how badly things appear to get, I always wake up each morning on the right foot : ) My simple advice would be, despite the adversity, if the outcome or results it is currently creating for you is not what you would prefer, look at the experience using another perspective by asking the right questions.

  43. I was with my wife for 10 years…7 years married. Long story short she cheated on me 3 times in less than a year. And she did this with other woman. I gave her many many chances, only to have her do the same thing and tell me the same thing: how she wants to make it work and the like. After my birthday and our anniversary, I found out 7 days later she was cheating on me with another woman. I just felt that she just took me for granted, like I was her comfort blanket ( and she told I was her comfort blanket months later). I felt she wanted her cake and eat it too. The funny thing is she told me later that she has always been attracted to girls…since she was 6 years old. She was going to come out with being a lesbian in high school but met me and didn’t. I never knew that and now I feel that I wasted 10 years…I never really knew her. She should have told me that. I told her my secrets, but it was all one sided. I see her as a stranger because I NOW know how she really is. I just wish I knew before we married and had 3 kids. For quite sometime I have been depressed, unattractive, and angry (still am). I used to cry many times a week but even though those feelings are still there, I don’t let them surface. Those emotions can be so draining. But the after effects is that I do not want to date, fearing that another woman will tell me later on that she is into girls and the fear of being cheated on. WHEW…!!! But I learned to release these feelings through journaling and writing poems. One positive thing that came from all this is that I have a much bigger fire to succeed: by reading on being successful, a better leader, and the bible (and spending more time with my kids).

  44. Darren, I truly enjoyed your piece on Gary Boyd. It reminded me of the time several years ago when I too was envious of some very dear friends’ lifestyle. Their home was magnificent, their clothes were tailored by the best designers, they flew first class all over the world… How I wanted to have their lifestyle – if not their life! One day, their first born son was killed in a car accident and that was the wake up call I needed: I went down on my knees to thank God that my daughters were all three alive and well and that I wasn’t a grieving mother.. Today, I can honestly say that I LOVE MY LIFE and I wouldn’t trade it for anyone’s.
    I am blessed to know you and I thank you for your magazine which is bringing great value to the subscribers. I devour it every month and listen to all the interviews on the cd in my car. You are an inspiration. I admire you and I wish you continued success!

  45. Darren, thanks for your reply! I’m asked often “How do you do it?” especially in relation to running the foundation. They can’t imagine being in my shoes. I tell them that I don’t want them to imagine but just to be grateful for what they have and to help others every chance they get. Although I have a difficult time embracing the “gift” Jessica gave me, I do believe as time goes by, I will become more accepting of it. After ten years, I chose to leave a large corporation shortly after her passing last year. I have 15+ years of information technology sales experience and I know the company well, Ingram Micro, that you recently gave a speech at. I shared that post with some of my colleagues already. I will let you know what I do with the foundation, relaunching my IT career and in life in general! I’m on your fb. Thanks for being there! ps…loved what “Dad” wrote to you!

  46. I would like to be among the long lines of positive “commentors” on your article. Through the years, I have had the ups and downs of life. At 68, I am again broke and your advises will keep me moving in the next 3 – 5 years of my business plan. More power!!!

  47. Hey Darren,

    Great article. We sometimes yearn for greener pastures, and that sometimes is a good thing. But when we are envious that can be negative at times. And as we’ve all heard at some point in our lives, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.

    However, that yearn for something better is a necessary part for one’s motivation. Their desire to be better, do better, and have better. In your story, you emphasize that we should be happy with who we are and what we have. We can always do better.

    Keep up your great work!

  48. You are an inspiration to us all, Dallas! Thank you for sharing your story and providing a ray of positive hope to our community here. And you are right…”it could ALWAYS be worse!”

  49. Darren I appreciate this post. I was thinking of not going to do a presentation for fear of being embarrassed because I don’t have the training and experience others may have. I have decided I will at the least use this experience as a learning opportunity. Or use the opportunity as a learning experience, I don’t know which. I am working on confronting my fears, but the only true fear should be the one you mentioned above. Everything else pales in comparison.

  50. Darren,

    I was laid off in Feb of 2009 from a company that I hated and felt a sign of relief for what had happened. Also I figured that I would have a job in no time at all. My wife announced her being pregnant with our first child the same week I was laid off. I sat down and thought to myself “who else could be so lucky to have two blessings in one week like this”? The workforce was down and getting a job wasn’t as easy as I though…..I went 13 months before being hired where I am today. I am extremely happy in the place that I have arrived in my life. I took 13 months to read/study Success Magazine and strive every day to make myself the best person I could on the inside. Now it is reflecting on the present.
    One thing that was interesting during the entire time…..people were always coming to my wife and I and saying “aren’t you scared” or “what are you guys going to do” …..We never got to that point to let the worry overtake us, for we had the biggest blessing of our life to look forward to. We were at risk of losing out house, credit going down, medical bills, and just surviving, but I said every day…..”It could be worse”.

  51. So sorry to hear about your friend, Jan, but also glad you had the courage to step up and get it done anyway! I am thankful everyday for my followers and all of your inspirations comments, too!!! :)

  52. P.S. after that Knock Down, I had time to think about everything is happening in my life, and in result, now I have even better relationship with my girlfriend, bigger plans for the future, and bigger Believe in what we do. So, now we can say that these knock downs are absolutely necessary in our life :)

  53. Thank you Darren, I’ve got planing worksheets :) I think that was exactly what I needed. Thank you so MUCH!!! I don’t have words to say how much I’m grateful for your respond!

  54. Hi Darren!! I love all of your posts — and agree with the many above, you are humble and humility from someone of your caliber is very, very refreshing :)

    It really isn’t a matter of “if” we get knocked down — it is definitely a “when”. I credit my mom to instilling in me a “get back up attitude” and she pretty much used your “what side of the green are you on today?” She would say that pity parties are no fun because you are the only one at the party — so set a time limit on it and get over it!! I just love to read……so many articles and books that I choose are written (in addition to Success and the books you recommend, but of course!!! :-) about the “least of these” — people in Third World countries. It’s hard when you have those thoughts and pictures in your mind to be down about losing a car, or not having the newest TV. I am not saying folks out of work are not without justification to feel stressed and concerned….but even “a little” in our great country – is wealth to others. Just a thought to chew on! Have a wonderful week :-) Hugs!

  55. Gary – just kidding. Darren interesting article. At the beginning of the article you had me wondering if this is Darren speaking. As I continued to read; Darren won at the end, bravo to you.

    One lesson that I have learnt in life is to live in the now and not in the how’s or what if’s.

  56. Great reminder! I have learned if you are still living, you can change anything that you do not like in your life. Pray, be diligent, and always stay positive. No one has to beleive your vision, or see what you see, but you!

  57. I have always had that policy. I feel that if we do not learn the lessons we are meant to learn, we will keep having repeat experiences until we do learn those lessons.

  58. I have learned after some very upsetting ordeals in my life to view them as opportunities. It doesn’t matter how bad it is there is a lesson to be learned, you might have to hunt for it but it’s there. Learn and move on, then the next time something happens that you think is awful then use what you have learned to help you move on to the next adventure.

  59. Another wonderful comment on life. Please keep them coming.

    I have waited many months for a friend to help me with Web 2.0 technology and a great looking blog. I relied on his advice as a mentor. So I waited… and waited… for his time to help me. The wait was because he was diagnosed with cancer at Christmas. He really never, in the last few months, had a good enough day to follow thorugh. A few days ago I realized he was the one who needed help far more than me, and I could not do anything for him. Thousands of miles and little ability to communicate made me feel so helpless.

    So I figured I could only help myself. I forged ahead with a “substitute” blog and am stumbling through technology ( and many financial and family situations). New opportunities are popping up as I write!

    You pointed out so clearly that we need to be thankful for what we have and what we can accomplish with some effort. I am back to writing my “Grateful Journal” nightly – even if I count one of my 5 things to be grateful for – 2 or 3 times over. Sometimes it’s just that the sun is shining, or we were able to give the visiting kids and families a wonderful dinner, or that I did create a blog even though it may not be the one I want….but I did it…..and I am in my late sixties, have the capacity to be a speed learner, and am healthy. What more can I ask?

    Thanks for the inspiration and thanks to your followers for their inspirational comments as well.

  60. I am also Realtor: actually a real estate Broker,. owns own office,. and it does get very hard to stay up in this market, AND TRY TO KEEP MY AGENTS UP, like Judy has said. but i also think of freinds and people we know who are fighting for thier life as well, and i have lost a few very good freinds to an illness also,. we must remember to stay positive and look at what we HAVE, and NOT look at what we don’t have.

  61. Strange, but ~4 hours ago I had, I think, biggest knock down in past few years. I realized that I stand in the same place or even lower than I was 2 month ago when I quit my disliked job and with enthusiasm gone to “nowhere” to do business, help people. Now I realized, that I cant help even myself: I organize and plan my work absolutely wrong – no results at all, my communication level with my girlfriend, because of that is going down, my savings too. Dam I was (think I still am) mad on myself. I tiff with my girlfriend and myself, jumped out of the car and walked away to the park. I think I needed ~ half an hour to come down and realize that I have to do something or it will get worse and worse… Next step was ~3hours work, which had to be done 2 weeks ago… Now I feel little better, but still realize I need to change my habits fundamentally or I really go to Nowhere. But how? Where to begin? I think I need teacher, but where to find him? Lots of questions, but not answers…
    With best wishes Aurimas (Lithuania)

  62. Darren,

    Thank you SO much for this post!! It seems like there are reminders all the time that life is too short to let getting knocked down (or even knocked out!) let you down.

    My life was forever changed when I spent over 6 months with my dad as he was dying from pancreatic cancer. He had decided finally to get his weight & health under control in his late 60’s… all because he had a dream to fly as a pilot again. He was well on his way to getting his medical clearance; he had his diabetes under control and had more energy than his 3 daughters put together! It took him awhile, but he was so excited. At the age of 70, He started experiencing alot of pain & weakness after a minor fall on the treadmill and come to find out he had stage 4 pancreatic cancer. It STILL didn’t change his attitude. Three days before his death, he was adamant that he wanted to be treated and that he was going to beat this. He was an amazing man that was going down fighting….

    All the reasons, stories & excuses to stay down after being knocked around a bit, don’t seem to matter much anymore because it could all be taken away. I was laid off a few months after his death & had to let go of my house because of it. These days, when feeling a punch or two, sometimes it still takes the wind out of me, but I am able to get up, brush myself off and laugh at myself (most of the time!)

    Thanks for the reminder!!


  63. Oh, Darren, I need to hear THIS from YOU … TODAY! Thank you. I got “dumped” last night. Ouch. I felt things were going really well–they were, except that someone from his past suddenly entered the picture and–Whoosh! “I’m really attracted and really drawn and really … but.” I was in shock; he’s a wonderful man, very responsible and very kind and very generous. I really have nothing but good to say about him and though he asked me to understand I felt there really is nothing to understand. He made a choice, right? And I realized, in reading your post, that it’s a simple as he and I not being a match for what I want–because I know EXACTLY what I want. (He’s going through a divorce.) And do you know why I know this? Because I followed your 10-year goal program and, like you, wrote many pages (25–not quite as many as you) describing my husband, how he treats me, who I am around him, and what our life is like and from there wrote a self-affirmation, who I need to be, to attract that kind of man into my life. I have ready it to myself EVERY. SINGLE. MORNING. In the mirror. Without fail. And I know that it’s working. My disappointments do not last more than a day!

  64. In fact, I usually read great posts like this one and I feel awesome again!!!

    I use to think about my past victories and the way I won them. What really gives me POWER again is to remember myself that ONLY I can make my sucess, and my PERSISTENCE brings indoubtly my success.

    I think about people like you, Darren Hardy, and I am learning always.

  65. I’m working through your program … love it and love the weekly motivation! I have all the worksheets up to 15 but am not seeing a link of any other worksheets. Am I missing something? Thanks for your help …

  66. Darren, great post, great perspective. “Right side of the dirt”, I really like that. Some of the posts talk about not deserving what they have and based on what you mention about Gary he didn’t deserve what he got so it is not about deserving. Just be thankful every day you are on the right side of the dirt and make as much out of your life as you can. Here’s a goal, to bounce back quicker each time. What an adventure!

  67. What an excellent post Darren and the timing couldn’t have been better! I was having a discussion with a friend of mine about a recent business setback and this really helps put things into perspective!

  68. This so great Darren. It really inspires me to go on, no matter what is happening, that I should remain consistent & continue walking in the right direction. God bless & more power to you Darren.


  69. Darren,

    Thank you!

    Now I have the anti-venom. This is similar (but not identical) to what you had provided in the Best 10 Years programme. Now I know I need to create a Board of Personal Advisers and interact with the advisers regularly. What a spectacular solution.

    May Cosmos inundate you with more riches so that you can keep empowering us.


  70. Maureen, I truly cannot imagine the pain a mother feels losing a child. I am deeply sorry.

    One thing I do know is some of the greatest organizations, foundations and charities that have gone on to do incredible, world-changing work have come out of such unfortunate occurrences. One such example locally here in San Diego is the Jenna Druck Foundation: Your love, passion and yes even grief can be great fuel for you to do amazing things for hundreds or thousands of others, for and because of your daughter. Her life and passing could be one of the greatest gifts she could have given you – a gift you rather not have received that way, but it is how it was done. The gift is now in your hands. I encourage you to let it inspire you versus debilitate you… as it seems to be doing. I look forward to learning what you do – keep me posted.

  71. That which does not kill you only makes you stronger… or as Les Brown says, if you get knocked on your butt at least you are looking up. If you can look up, you can get up!

  72. Darrren,

    Thank you for this important posting. I do understand the what ought to be the right response to failure, but how do you handle the derision and taunts of others? There will always be some–whom, sometimes, you can not avoid–who will keep reminding you of your failures so that you do not grow? Such people are highly toxic and your writing does not provide the anti-venom. How do you tackle such toxic population?

  73. After a recent career set back (translation: job lost), I focused on the what is important yet have gone neglected due to my job including my family, friends and faith; sought out opportunities to help others (and yes, subscribed to Success Magazine)–all of which have helped me put things into perspective.

    I truly believe “set backs” are opportunities to reflect, accept and embrace your responsibility as the true creator of your own path to greatness and prosperity as you define it. Thanks for another great story and post!

  74. Hi Darren,

    Another fantastic article. When things knock me down I say to myself “right I have too choices”. “I can either stay here and feel sorry for myself or pick my chin up and stride ahead!” Its not with the time or emotional energy to stay in the doom and gloom. “Onwards and Upwards!”

  75. Darren, I’ve lived a life of getting back up every time I’ve been knocked down-whether by family, friends, ex-husband(s), coworkers-intentional or not-obstacles are merely a challenge to overcome. I live my life not knocking down others but rather helping to raise them up when they’re down. It saddens me to admit that I’ve been knocked down for over a year now-ever since my 6-year old daughter passed away in my arms. The memory of that moment is what knocks me down over and over. Helping others is the best way I give myself some sort of peaceful feeling. As for being envious and wishing to have someone else’s life as you did for awhile with Gary Boyd because he had “things” you didn’t, I rarely felt that way but I do now. At the end of the day, all that matters is your children (or dearest loved ones) and that you have your health to enjoy them and love them for many years. These days, I dream of what it would be like to have my daughter in my arms again. I am aware it’s “grief” that knocks me down and keeps me there-yet “grief” is not an obstacle? Others tell me, “you learn to live with it/to cope with the loss”. My way of coping is by keeping myself so busy, I make others dizzy…by running a foundation I established in her name to help other families struggling with pediatric cancer and by doing my best to be a good (single) mom to my three sons. I hope as time passes, my knockdowns are less frequent and lesser in duration. Thank you for telling others that obstacles are”small” in the grand scheme of things called “life”. We need to overcome obstacles and the lucky ones never have to learn to live with a catastrophe.

  76. Thanks for sharing your story with us, Bryce! Kudos to you for staying positive and making a better life for yourself and your family. Keep us the great work!

  77. As a Realtor in this volatile market I get knocked down almost every day by something that is usually beyond my control. It only takes me a second to remember my beautiful sister Marybeth who fights everyday to stay alive with a horrible illness. She gives me strength and courage. She and I remind each other almost daily that it’s not what happens to you in life that defines you but how you deal with it! I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there are real people with real problems and I am grateful to be healthy and alive! I may get knocked down but I just won’t stay there!

  78. Agreed! Great testimony, Scott! Thank you so much for sharing your truly triumphant success with us. Kudos to you for CHOOSING to turn your life around and succeeding beyond imagination. :)

  79. So very glad to see first hand how my Designing the Best 10 Years of Your Life series has helped you, Dmitry! Thanks for sharing and helping to inspire others to stay POSITIVE!

  80. Thank you so much for reminding me how grateful I should be everyday. I will stop focusing on the negative and get up and start living life more fully each day. I want to start living gratefully and especially showing more love to others.

  81. Darren, thanks for that inspiration. Stated very well. The story and example make it really hit home. I live by that. Take action, never give up, fall down, get up, dust yourself off (always, always, always make it a lesson that makes you grow and above all, get back on the horse. It’s you and your life, you can envy and be jealous all you want and that won’t get you your goal. Only keeping the goal in sight and taking effective action will get you there.

  82. Sometimes it feels like I make 1 step forward then 3 steps back, and then again and agian – going back further and further. It is easy for doubt to step in. Wondering if I will really make it. I have always kept a possitive attitude and regardsless of the what happens, I continue to believe in me and my dreams. I like you blog on STRETCH, I know if I keep pushing thru and fighting the battles (internal and external) the pendulum of success will swing in my favor. Thank you for your uplifting and encouraging words.

  83. Getting knocked down is a good signal you are stretching yourself and learning. Thanks Darren for sharing this story.

  84. I’ve been getting knocked down a LOT lately. I’m getting a little better at handling it though, I’ve noticed. I remind myself I wanted to challenge myself by getting an MBA when my undergraduate degree is in Journalism.

    I just worked really, really hard for a test on which I did terrible. The first time this happened, I cried. The second time it happened, I reminded myself of some other accomplishments I did in the day and made sure to get extra rest.

    To “get back on the horse,” I try to brainstorm things I could do or try differently. I try to keep moving and keep adjusting. Don’t give up, just keeping going bit by bit.

  85. Reading all of these messages has given me some strength. My Mom has been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer and even though my sister has been doing a fabulous job of taking care of her(in addition to working her full time job) and my being there on the week-ends, it is challenging as hell. The impact I wasn’t prepared for at all. It is taking some getting used to if that ever really takes place. It is making me really be aware of my own health and what I am puting in my own body. Thanks goes to all of those folks that have taken the time to share their experiences here.

  86. Darren, great article! It confirms to me that I should do what I love because life is short. Thanks for always providing your readers with great information.

  87. Right on, Darren! You live what you say. Life is like one of the new electronic toys – when it bumps into an insurmountable obstacle it either spins, backs up, or climbs over and takes off in relentless pursuit of a path.

    Keep up your good work!

    A success lifestyle believer,

    McGehee, AR

  88. Great perspective Darren. I have three grown boys (men) and I have always told them that life is full of obstacles and that when they encounter one, or several, that they need to confront them, sulk for a little bit and then dust themselves off and climb back on the horse. I know this is easier said than done, but it has worked for me and I hope my boys use this as well when they encounter setbacks. There is always someone less fortunate than yourself and we need to be very thankful that we are not in their situation and try in earnest to make the best of our own good fortune and enjoy the ride! I particularly like one of Jim Rohn’s quotes ” Don’t cry over small hurts”.

  89. Betsy, I’ve been there too with my son (now 18)….pray for wisdom and patience…and let him make his own mistakes in life. Just 2 short years ago things were disastrous for my son, and now he has his GED, enrolling in community college, and has future plans for the air force in 2011. Things CAN work out. Just stay in faith and continue being a role model for positive thinking and living a goal-oriented life! amy

  90. Thanks for a great and uplifting post. I’m thankful every day for being “above ground” and not below it. Your post just reinforced that my life is a gift and also a present. Enjoy the downs so you’ll appreciate the ups when it arrives.

  91. I like the perspective of being on the right side of the dirt! I only allow myself to stay in self-pity for a very short time. No matter what happens, it only makes me stronger because that is how I decided I would handle any situation in my life. We each have that decision to make. We have a choice to have a great awesome day because we have the power to make it a great day!

  92. There is no reason to feel sorry for yourself. This is something that I have said over and over to myself when I was feeling bad. Recently, a friend of mine had a bad accident that resulted in a brain injury. She was also my business partner – which caused panic on my end for many reasons. Watching her struggle through a real disaster reminds me that, even around April 15th, things aren’t so bad.

    Things happen fast! Didn’t Ferris Bueller say something about that?

  93. Thanks Darren, I love your post, magazine, and designing the next 10 years. You always help me keep things in perspective and are helping me achieve my goals!

  94. This one is for me. I recently was moving rather well along a new career path when I ran into halting obstacles along the way. I let them get to me and was down for to long a period of time. I’m OK now and know that life for me only sucks because I allow the setbacks to effect me for too long. Darren this artical reminded me to get back up before I get counted out! Good stuff!

  95. Mr. Hardy, this was an inspirational post. I work in the auto industry and boy have we been knocked down this past year. Great things will not come around without hard work and perserverance. The story took such an emotional twist; one minute I’m thinking “this guy made it” and the next minute not so lucky. I am warmed by the fact that if there was a silver lining, that he didn’t seek riches at the expense of his family. So many people do that and if sickness falls on them, they have alienated all those that loved them.

    When you are gone, the only thing you can take with you is love.

  96. The phrase it always looks greener on the other side is certainly worth reevaluating. We never know what destiny holds for those who we envy and or those whom we admire. I have been knocked down on many occasion only to rise again from integrity blows, accusation blows and blows seeking to paralysis me. I have found many personal philosophies that all aid in some from or fashion. It can’t get to you if it can’t get in you, Trust those you know less and trust those you don’t know at all. They hate me on just the speculation of a rumor and here is it that God loves me and he has all the evidence. We can recover if we remain focus and remain true to WHO WE ARE. The quickest way to rebound is to BLOCK OUT, and the quickest way to recover is to FORGIVE, and the quickest way to get up is to LOOK UP !

  97. I just wrote about this in my latest blog. I used the analogy of the old Asian legend. Are you a carrot, an egg or tea leave? When each of these are put into boiling water what happens? Do you soften like the carrot? Do you get hard on the inside like the egg or do you make fragrant, sweet tea like the tea leaves? How do you react to obstacles and adversity when it comes along? I, for one, am a tea leaf!

  98. DH,
    Dem there sum POU wer full wurds! That’s Texas talk for, ‘Your message regarding Gary’s demise is a tremendous reminder to all of us to enjoy what we have…Now…In This Moment! ~Andre, M (LinkedIn/eResumes4Vips; Twitter/eResumes4Vips)

  99. Getting knocked down is never the problem only don’t stay down. I have learn that as I stay focus on my goal I will always need to make adjustments. The knocks are only teaching me there is a better way. When I run into what may look like a wall if I only look up many times I find that its just another step to take me higher. In everything give thanks for this is the well of God in Christ. Be thankful for all that you can do now and make the adjustments needed and never give up on you.

    Think about it.

    Carl V. Andrews

  100. Betsy,

    You will help him more if you see him how you want him to be and stop telling the story of how he is. If you spend 15 minutes a day visualizing him as you would like him to be, feeling the emotions you would feel if he were that way (proud, happy, etc.) and visualize him happy, feeling confident and secure, passionate about whatever trips his trigger and pursuing it . . . you have the power of influence. It is not at all necessary to speak to him of this and it is counter productive to push him to be other than he is directly (he just digs in deeper and his mind finds more reasons to resist you). Find a friend who will allow you to play a game and spend a few minutes daily telling the friend how wonderfully he has changed (telling the story the way you want it to be).

    Right now it is like you are looking at where you do not want to go on a map. The above changes your focus to where you want to go. You can’t get to North Carolina by studying Utah on the map.

    This will work. I have an 18 and a 19 year old and I cannot even begin to describe how happy I am with them; the Englilsh language does not have enough good words. (an interesting aside — look up something like happy or joy in a thesaurus and then look up anger and see how many more words there are ~~ when we change our language so there are more happy words than angry words our culture will move in that direction).

  101. This couldn’t come at a better time Darren! I ran my first adventure race this past Sunday. Our team’s goal was to complete the race in less than 5 hours having canoed 6 miles, ran 6 miles, and biked 15 miles. We did that, only missing one optional checkpoint.

    However, once it was over, the post race let down kicked in; I kept reviewing the mistakes, thinking of the “I should haves”, etc. For 2 days, my greatest victory has become my biggest disappointment because I felt that my 6 months of training should have increased my performance better than it did, that I let down my team, etc.

    Today forward, however, I am focusing on the victory of losing 50 pounds in my training, having a wonderful time, learning a lot for my next race and finally achieving my dream of becoming an adventure racer! Thanks so much-I’m back up and back in the game!


  102. Thanks for a great post, Darren!

    I’ll admit, one of my greatest fears has been that after I work really hard and obtain success, then something horrible will happen. I know that’s a supersitious way to look at life, and it can be a hindrance, but it’s just one of my things. So, imagine my horror when I read your post.

    Great advice on how to put things in perspective, minimize the time we spend on the bumps in the road and on petty supersitions, like mine, which is nothing more than negative thinking. Thanks again for your insights.

    I also want to take this opportunity to say thanks for your blog, what you’ve done with SUCCESS, and all that you and your team do. I first learned of SUCCESS late last year and nothing has been more important to helping me focus my efforts and dreams. Its all been a Godsend.

    Alan L. Hammond

  103. This is a wonderfully inspiring post. And you are so right, it is alright to get knocked down. Right now, I am in the ‘knocked down’ stage but I am not letting it keep me down. Thank you for this encouragement.

  104. Very Meaningful Message Darren!

    As odd as this may sound, when I am feeling really low, I just pick up the Newspaper and open up the Obituaries page. It doesn’t take long to feel really humble and embarrassed that I think my current woes, whatever they are on that day, are anything other than a bump in the road. It is so easy to think the “Grass is Greener” but when one looks around at the struggle and strife some people must deal with daily, it’s obvious that, as you say… “Point is, as long as you are on the right side of the dirt, no obstacle really matters.”

    I absolutely love SUCCESS Magazine and it has become a trusted resource in my life. Thank you!


  105. I am usually a very positive guy. My mantra is “I am Possible”. Due to some “unknown reason” for last few days I was feeling down a bit, probably bogged down by the enormity of the work that I have taken on my plate.

    Your post came at an opportune time. Thank You. I once read in Jim Rohn’s post “The teacher will appear when the student is ready”. Thanks Again. God Bless You.

  106. Great article. After watching my uncle whom was also a successful man succumb to lung cancer in just a matter of days, He was diagnosed and admitted into the hospital on Monday and died the following Thursday. I too can say that I am glad that I am not my uncle. Even though I envied him.
    Being blessed with another day and being able to give your dreams another chance should never be taken lightly.

  107. Scott,
    You absolutely DO deserve your rewards. You overcame an enormous obstacle! Your are a precious being and deserve to be happy and successful!

  108. I lost one of my best friends 4 years ago. One month before his unexpected death, he and his wife and daughter, myself and my kids all took a cruise together. We had a fabulous time and nothing could have led us to believe that he’d be gone within a month of that cruise. Life is short and should not be wasted on thinking about things that happened…look to the future, learn from your missteps and pick yourself up and move forward toward your goals. Without our health, we have nothing.

  109. I can painfully relate to this, as I’m currently watching my wife wither away from breast cancer. All the problems and difficulties I’ve had in the past seem like nothing compared to this. I really commend Darren for this perspective. Any setback is nothing…nothing! if you have your and your family’s health.

  110. Thanks Darren, for all you do and this post specifically.
    I went to bed a little defeated last night. Something I rarely do and sure enough, it was harder to get up early and attack my day.
    I am a small business owner and have all the normal obstacles in addition to a son who is 20 and cannot seem to find optimism in his life, even if I served it to him for dinner!
    (Which I do most nights)
    I cannot get him to help himself or even read anything inspirational.
    (Success for teens included) I’ve tried thousands of times.
    As ineffective as I am feeling in regards to him, you have managed to remind me,
    This too shall pass…
    Thank you.

  111. In 1988 I was a 145 pound drug addict shooting methamphetamines into my arm on the streets of Dallas Texas. Through the Grace of God I overcame all of the negative influences in my life at the time. I now have a beautiful wife and wonderful children. I have a nice job and a big house. 2 years ago I graduated from college with a business degree. I deserve none of this. Every morning I “choose” to be happy realizing that tomorrow is not a certainty. My motto is to constantly strive for Success in my life and attempt to impact the lives of others but I first choose to be happy today.

    This is why I love Success magazine Darren. You make no compromise for the negative garbage that holds people back. I now buy Success magazine subscriptions as birthday gifts for friends and I give my old copies away.

    Scott Bina

  112. I recently failed miserably at a fitness competition. At first I looked at the experience as me being cheated and how it wasn’t fair that I was not nominated in the top 5. Today I look at it as a blessing. As I get ready fir my next competition in 2 weeks and another one in 2 months I realize that this failure got me to be creative, focussed and not complacent anymore. I was cheating in my diet but now I am diligent and think to myself to be better than the last time in terms of my physique. I don’t even complain about the workout anymore.

    My failure made me a better athlete and in a way humbled me about the judging process. Just because a judging panel thinks otherwise does not mean that I am not a winner.

  113. I leave it to HIM and get the learnings from the event and be better prepared for the next.

  114. Wow! You will never know how much I needed that! I was knocked down via email just minutes before reading your post, and it encouraged me to put my struggles into perspective and be thankful for what I do have.
    Also love the part about bouncing back and not staying down. I’m working on that every day, and after reading your thoughts, shook off what was bothering me and pushed forward.

  115. Great stuff and so true! Sometimes we can get so caught up on learning how to “win” and reach our goals in life, it’s easy to forget that a fall WILL come at some point in our lives! Thanks!

  116. Darren,

    Thanks so much for your positive and inspiring posts every week. Thank you for Best 10 Years program which I completed along with many others. You keep inspiring people to never give up, and continue working for your dream no matter what happens to you. Thanks to people like you I am now back on track and working towards my goals. In fact, I have achieved couple of goals I already set up for myself during your incredible program:

    1. I am starting new job in May.
    2. I am in active process of buying a car.
    3. I am starting a couple of side projects of my own.

    I have had a bad investment, which sucked $30 grand, and now I am recovering those from my ex-partner. My little web studio lost contracts due to crisis, and I had to go back to corporate job. But now I am starting a new IT outsourcing company (readers are welcome to contact me via the URL I provided in this comment), my ex-partner is going to return some of my money rather soon, and other side projects are showing good progress.

    Thanks for inspiring, and I wish you the very best luck and happiness in your life.

    Kiev, Ukraine

  117. Mr. Publisher: Your post today made me smile and really stop what I was doing and look back about 20-25 years ago and observe a young man who had the rare ability to cope with anything he encountered and show an incredible resillency to negative events. It’s the possession of self – esteem and confidence that makes you dynamic and capable and with these traits you simply refused to go backwards.
    As an avid journal keeper at such a young age you used it as an inspirational file where you could access upbeat notions to keep that wonderful mind churning positive situations from negative situations. Early on you had a swagger that said, “Nothing is impossible for me”, and “I expect to win”. In this post you showed that you are a “Natural” at what ever you attempt to do, You treat bad news as good news, you see potentiality which continuously enlarges your sense of capability and possibilty.
    Keep up your intensity as it is contageous and attractive to your readership who look to you and your publication, “Success Magazine” showing them how to make Success look easy.
    I am in awe of your Naturalness and so very proud of your accomplishments.

  118. Right On Darren!
    when your horse bucks you off, either get back on or saddle another. with your help and Success Magazine, I’m learning how to cut my ‘sulking’ time way down too. I agree, ALWAYS end your day with a Positive!

    All the Best,


  119. Great post Darren, (long time reader first time caller!)
    It is so true how as humans we have that innate ability to attach meaning to everything that comes our way, if everyone took your advice and attached a new more positive meaning to what could perhaps be seen as a negative experience then we would have a lot more people “picking up their bucket and broom” (as my mother would say) and getting on with it.

    Thanks for another great post!

  120. One of the best articles I’ve ever read. Honest and open. Kind of puts it all in perspective. Right there with the old saying “gather in a circle and throw all your problems in the middle. When you see everyone elses problems you’d probably be glad to get your own back and go home.” Thanks

  121. What a good reminder that, as Andy Andrews says, “It’s impossible to fight an enemy living inside your head.” Some of the most important advice I’ve received is “freely forgive others, whether they recognize their need for your forgiveness or not. Perhaps more importantly, forgive yourself; and remember, ‘Tomorrow is a new day, with no mistakes in it.'”

  122. Hi Darren, Thanks for the thought, it’s honest and true, specially coming form someone as successful as you. However, I couldn’t stop thinking about Gary and the family he left behind. It is true that “WE” are not Gary so “WE” should be happy and move on. I’m a very positive person, but the idea of having the ideal live and the happy family and then just die… ouch! That’s one of the worst obstacles to overcome…. the death of someone close. Anyway, I send Gary’s family much love. And Gary, wherever you are, thanks for inspiring Darren to write this article and inspire so many more people to keep on going!!!

  123. This was so timely. My brother’s killer (a drunk driver) was just sentenced, and it’s so hard to accept how little penalty our laws (i.e., society) put on killing someone when drunk. Thanks for reminding me that, even though my brother is gone, for my Mom and I, “as long as you are on the right side of the dirt, no obstacle really matters.” I am going to get active with MADD and support activities that will, hopefully, keep another family from going through what we have. Thank you.

  124. My favorite quote in a movie sums this post up for me:
    But it ain’t how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. How much you can take, and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done. Now, if you know what you’re worth, then go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hit, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you are because of him, or her, or anybody. Cowards do that and that ain’t you. You’re better than that!
    Rocky Balboa
    Speaking to his son in Rocky Balboa (2006)

  125. Outcomes result in winning or learning. You can always take one, and sometimes take both. I like the Japanese proverb – “Fall down seven times, stand up eight.” It’s a nice reminder that sometimes we can fall down more than once and still end up winning. And it’s ok to be honest when you feel less than fabulous – then get on with it. Life’s for the living. Nice Job D!

  126. Darren,

    I rewrite my goals (which I do daily anyway) and make sure my actions are in alignment with what I am setting out to achieve.Thank you for all you do!

    Mark Saunders

  127. Darren, I am a new-comer to Success, and boy am I glad to be on board!!! Nicely done post, and very thought provoking. I like to use music to lift my spirits when I have a set back,, or knock out. It helps me, Thanks for listening, Kimberly

  128. This may sound “half full” but I always try to keep in mind that it is never as bad as it seems and it is never as good as it may appear. We aren’t guaranteed tomorrow that’s why they call the present a “gift”. Make TODAY count, tomorrow isn’t guaranteed for any of us.

  129. Great post. Great reminder. As I find myself wishing I could “afford a bigger, better, more impressive house” I sometimes forget how truly blessed I am – I have a beautiful home and more true friends and family than I ever imagined I would have as a child surrounded by poverty and strife. I am not wealthy but I am more comfortable than many and, as my assistant pointed out to me the other day- I’ve positioned myself to be able to “go out and get one more deal” when I need a little more money – which she feels she cannot do – she earns what she earns (although we all know she has the same choice I did – to work on something else when she leaves her “day job” until she can make her passion her “day job”). Anyway, great post – and I couldn’t help but smile at James’ honesty saying “…but I still wish I was “Gary Boyd!”. I know what you mean James, but truly – unlike Gary, you still have the opportunity to become what you want to be – God Bless Gary’s family. I hope the joy Gary brought them is what they think of when they think of him – how fortunate is a man who is missed when he leaves us! You never know who’s life you may be touching each day. In that regard James, you just may be someone’s “Gary Boyd”. :-)

  130. Wow! That stopped me in my tracks. I just got home from one of the busiest most frustrating days I’ve ever had -I felt like a doormat today. I brought the anger and frustration home with me and sat down at my computer to catch up on personal stuff…and there you were with this message. Thank you I feel much better. I really needed that perspective! It was no coincidence that This popped up in my email.


  131. Darren–

    Thank you for a wonderful post–at just the time I needed it–TODAY.

    I am a finance professional that was laid off 1 year ago this Thursday and have been working part-time teaching and contract gigs to pay the bills. What a humbling yet growth experience to be sure.

    Ironically, a workforce center is (potentially) interested in hiring me as a regular guest speaker /author to discuss a “Lay-Off Survival Guide” that I have unknowingly penned through my daily journaling of this experience. Over the past year I have been noting the physical and mental strategies I have deployed in order to keep positive and not become one the millions of “discouraged” workers no longer counted in the unemployment numbers.

    I have never considered a career in motivational speaking but if this experience creates an opportunity for me to share with the millions of men and women going through the similar pain I have gone through… it will have all been worth it.

    I will renew my subscription when I get working full-time again but thank you for keeping me on your email distribution.

    Thanks again Darren for the wonderful post and terrific magazine my friend..

    Andrew Johnston

  132. I needed to hear this message today. Thanks for reminding me that setbacks are short and that it’s up to me to turn my attitude and perspective about it around. I’ve been experiencing setbacks for a few months now but I’m tired of letting them get me down. I’m now moving on within hours and soon enough, within minutes. Thanks Darren.

  133. I figured it out that it’s all part of the journey. I expect a few failures, rejections and obstacles along the way. I just see them as learning experiences. Yes, they are quite disappointing. I just wrote a blog asking the questions, are your a carrot, an egg or tea leaves? When these 3 items are put into boiling water what happens to them? When adversity or obstacles come your way, do you soften like the carrot, get hard on the inside like the egg, or make sweet, fragrant tea like the tea leaves? I, for one, am making tea now.

  134. As someone who has battled ovarian cancer and won, and then a severe house fire where I lost everything I owned but no one was hurt, I have to totally agree with you. Keep up the great posts!

  135. Wow, excellent article. I went through a situation this past weekend. I didn’t let it get me down and at the end, things worked out for me. I think i’m down to a 8-10 period, after that I’m usually good.

  136. You are so very right. It is amazing how many people just do not get it. I am happy for every day as each day gives me another chance to get it right. One day I will have the things that I dream about. One day I will be one of the people who will be able to help the many and not just the few. Thanks for sharing.

  137. Hi Darren… Great wisdom, lesson learned! Thanks. It’s so much fun to keep the positive flowing, but sometimes it’s the hardest thing to do. I am thankful when I come across words that cut to the chase (like yours) and you know they were written just for you. :)

    Seems like I’ve spent a lifetime of picking myself up and comparing myself to everyone else only to beat myself up, but when I get real with myself, I wouldn’t trade my life with anyone else, because I have had many cool opportunities. I am jazzed and thankful that I get to do what I love and get paid for it. Working for myself, with my family in focus, makes every day a blessing beyond compare and gives me the opportunities to keep looking for my real purpose

    I heard a song once that every once in awhile echoes in my thoughts and turns my head around, when I start looking around and it gets me back to an attitude of gratitude. The chorus repeats… “Count your blessings, name them one by one, count your MANY blessings see what God has done…” One by one, I start to count and found that it’s a great way to fall asleep when our thoughts keep us awake with stress. Thanks Darren. Enjoyed your words and we will say some prayerful ones for your friends family. Blessings -Linda

  138. Darren,

    That is a great story. Another idea to add could be that we all have our time to leave. You never know. Why not make our individual stories great and inspirational while we are here. Time is of the essence!

  139. Darren, thank you for this post on keeping things in perspective. I’m sorry for the loss this family suffered. I will keep his family in prayer. I must tell you,without getting into great detail, that I am battling back from financial loss. What I didn’t lose I gave away. I was truly knocked down a few pegs on the ladder of life. As I make my way back, the loss and the journey back is giving me a whole new and different perspective on life. What is also true for everyone who has or who will suffer loss is this: no one can take your knowledge away from you. My knowledge of the financial markets, the fact that I am a published author with more books in the works, my love of giving; no one can take it away from me. When I make it back I will put everything I know and everything I’ve learned, to use again.

  140. Thanks for the post Darren. I really needed the reminder today. I’ve suffered a succession of embarrassments, set-backs and things that still carry real fear these last months, and they’re not done. You’ve asked for our comments and coping mechanisms. I’ve found comfort in the Bible and prayer (more than ever before) and through spending more time being fully present with my wife and kids.

    Three great things are coming out of this already: 1) My relationships, old and new, are far better than they’ve ever been. Largely because I’m better at them and value the moments more. 2) I’ve found I have friends that I thought were just friendly acquaintances, are far more than I ever imagined (frankly, I didn’t think very many people liked me much. What an amazing blessing to find out I was very wrong); and 3) circumstances have provided me with the opportunity, time and impetus to reinvent myself and truly change my future!

    Staying positive and taking action will always beat the pants off of dwelling on the negative and/or potential negative. Take the risk. Step boldly into the future. I don’t remember who the author of those words are, but God Bless them. Thanks Darren. Keep up the good work. We need you.

  141. Funny that I should read this today. My 55-year-old sister was a transplant patient, I donated my kidney to her 10 years ago. 2 years ago she lost her job, was unemployed and uninsured, a very scary thing for a transplant patient. Two weeks ago I got a call that she had been admitted to the hospital. I flew across the country and when I arrived we all learned that she had terminal colon cancer, she died three days later. We just buried her this past Saturday, April 17. All I can think is that I am healthy, I am employed, I own my own home I am here to bake with my grand-daughter. I have friends and family to support me. All my little aches and pains and stupid things that I normally whine about have a whole new meaning for me today. You’re right, there are two sides to the dirt. I will never complain again.

  142. I think I read in one of the issues of your magazine ,something I put up on my wall at home in my office .FAILURE IS SIMPLY THE OPPORTUNITY TO BEGIN AGAIN,THIS TIME MORE
    INTELLIGENTLY.I find myself starting over again and again but a little wiser each time.

  143. I ask myself if my feelings are based in love or fear. After being honest, I realize I have the power to create and recreate any situation that I am in. Love being in this “group.” Thank you for the light you shine!

  144. Great post Darren! Love the transparency. When people keep it “real” it is so empowering to others. My faith is what carries me through when I get knocked down. I now know that any situation I go through can be used in my life to help others. I heard a woman who was honored as a CNN Hero last year, can’t remember her name, say when she first was diagnosed with breast cancer her initial thoughts were, “Why me?” Throughout her journey her question became, “What For?” I will never forget her speech that night. What inspiring words to live by!

  145. One of the greatest things I’ve found for times when I feel knocked down is exercise. A great workout does wonders for the mind and body. Whatever your fitness level you can always knock out one more push up, one more rep, take one more step, stretch for a little longer or little further and set a new personal best.

  146. Darren- I couldn’t agree with you more. Thanks for the reminder. Love Success Magazine. Keep up the extraordinary work. Embrace Risk, Embrace Success! Continued success- Tom

  147. This is so true and such a great story Darren. Thanks for sharing.
    I have spent some time in my life in the past dwelling on why certain things that I thought were bad happened to me, and why I ‘deserved’ such treatment.
    Now I know that they are all just a part of the great learning experience that we call ‘Life’.

    So, now when I fall down or get knocked down my aim is to see how high I can bounce.

  148. Great narrative Darren. Your sincerity shines through. Now, while envy/jealousy is a negative vibrational energy (read David Hawkin’s, “Power vs. Force) and a much better approach is to exalt in other’s successes. You were just expressing a very common emotional viewpoint on how we view those more “successful” than ourselves. What is great about those like Gary Boyd is they show us “possibility” of what can be achieved.
    The key here is that you “have to get in the ring”. You have to be willing to risk the chance of you getting knocked out, for you to attain the knock out. Spectators get to view the experience, but to actually live it – that for me is living.
    Thank you Darren for your inspiration. Keep getting in the ring because for someone like myself, you are my Gary Boyd (you just haven’t finished writing your story yet) , and I’m here cheering for you and doing my best to join you in the ring.

  149. One of the many things I love about you Darren is that you are a humble man. I always enjoy reading your editorials and listening to you speak because your material is extremely relatable and applicable to my daily life. Thank you for continually contributing to my positive outlook on life!

  150. By the way Darren, I look forward to you and your staff interviewing me when I tell my success story.

    Clemmie L. Alcorn III

  151. I find that prayer and the fact that God loves me and has a perfect plan for my life keeps me going. The bible verse I am reminded of is: “For a righteous man may fall seven times
    And rise again…” NKJV

    Getting knocked down is inevitable, getting back up is a choice. Choose wisely!

  152. I find that prayer and the fact that God loves me and has a perfect plan for my life keeps me going. The bible verse that I am reminded of is “For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again…” Prov. 24:16 NKJV

    Getting knocked down is inevitable, getting back up is a choice. Choose wisely!

  153. Darren,

    As Muhammad Ali said, somewhat paraphrasing the great Vince Lombardi, “There’s nothing wrong with getting knocked down, as long as you get right back up.”

  154. The perfect reading to close my day at work. Thank you so much, Darren!
    Regards from Lima, Peru ^_^

  155. Thanks for the reminder, Darren. For a long time I lived in shame and regret over mistakes and perceived failures. Somewhere along the way there was a shift to the belief that the good, the bad and the ugly, well, it’s all GOOD! I now imagine the most colorful threads in the tapestry of my life are there because of ‘failures’ or getting knocked down. Thanks for the message today… I look forward to SUCCESS every month. Jan

  156. Darren, I love the depth of your comment about our humanness! Life is not always about our professional lives– about successful and winning careers. It is mostly about our personal lives– and our personal journeys to excellence. On the “Success Continuum”, excuses take us in negative directions towards failure– while effort moves us in positive directions towards success. Those of us committed to excellence will take many positive steps towards our goals, but occasionally (because of our humanness) we will take some steps back. There will be times, like you mentioned, when we are knocked completely down. It’s what we do after the fall that tells the real story. Like the wise proverb teaches: Fall down seven times, get up eight. True success is when we become successful as professionals because we have become successful as people. Our humanness is the key!

  157. Darren –

    What a great way to brighten the end of my day today. I just went to the funeral of a long time mentor of mine here in Boise Idaho, a man named Alan Tell. He blessed all who crossed paths with him in his grace, wisdom, and passion for listening. He was here to support me with a refreshing viewpoint as I attempted my first real management job. I will not forget him and I’m better having known him.

    The reason for this post is to take your advice and end the day on a positive note, which you just did for me. THANK YOU. After loosing Jim Rohn this year, I now have two mentors gone in a short span of time. I have had enough experience reading your blog, columns, and stories to hope that you and your wisdom will fill the next space in time as Jim did so well in years past. Please keep doing what you do and let your passion and true thoughts flow like this, knowing that at least one person is looking to you for guidance.

    All my best and hopes for your success!

  158. You are very welcome, Adam. Thank you for sharing yours. It was truly inspirational and provides another great example for us. Oh, and awesome gift to you personal clients! Glad you are getting kudos for sharing SUCCESS!

  159. Darren,

    Great post. Thank you for making it so personal and revealing the kind of thoughts that I think so many of us have at one time or another. Like you, I’ve been pretty successful in business (not without setbacks though) but still, I would watch friends who have achieved more faster and I would find myself envy what they were accomplishing.

    One day I finally realized that although the grass might appear greener on “the other side” I really had no idea how much watering was going into keeping it that green. And I made the decision to just focus on what I wanted to do and do my own thing… Plus, instead of always “looking up” to people who had more I started looking to the sides and “down” where I came from and realized all the blessings I already had and could now share with others. An amazing thing happened. For one, it actually made me even more successful. Two, I became a happier man. And three, I realized the best solution to quickly end any sulking is to focus on helping those less fortunate who really need a helping hand to get started or get ahead.

    Again, thank you for sharing your story.


    P.S. I only found Success Magazine last year, but I’m now a huge fan. In fact, I now give a Success subscription all my personal clients and I have never have people thank me as much for any gift in the past as people thank me now for sending them your magazine! They all love it and I get to be a hero! 😉

  160. This is a great post! When I get knocked down, I try to remember what is important (family, friends, health, faith), what assets I still have and the successes I have had in the past. It also helps to remember that setbacks are only temporary.

  161. What Darren I really appreciate and respect someone who is honest and is very true what you wrote. I think all of us at one point or another wish we had someone else’s successful life. I got laid off a couple months ago and I what has kept me staying positive is reading Success Magazine and listening to some of Jim Rohn’s cds. I also like to attend church on a regularly basis, church retreats, and go for a walk with my dog or salsa dancing. I think life is as you see it.

  162. Great story Darren. It doesn’t matter if, or how often, we get knocked down. It’s how quickly we get up that matters.

  163. I have been knocked down a lot…more than successes to be honest. If I’m going to fail…I’m going to fail forward. Always keeping it moving. I try not to hang on to the failure long; otherwise it’ll become part of you.

  164. Hi Darren

    I read a piece somewhere last year and the simplest concept in it completely changed my thinking. It basically said to ask yourself ‘What’s the worst that can happen?’.
    I live in New Zealand (man am I lucky), so even if my business and business life ended today my family and I wouldn’t starve. My kids would still get a good (free) education. We would find some shelter somewhere (friends, family etc) and I could probably get a job at least flipping burgers or whatever before I ‘started again’. The sun would still come up the next day and my friends and family would continue to love me. I would still live in one of the world’s most beautiful places, and one that encourages the business spirit.
    You don’t plan for the worst to happen – you would fight it like hell – but once you come to understand that ‘the worst’ is not the end of the world, it puts things in perspective. In my case at the time it was a massive load off my shoulders.
    The ‘worst’ in NZ is probably a lot better than ‘good’ in many countries!

  165. So true what you have written about Darren,it seems we only really appreciate our lifes when the guy we have been dreaming of becoming either is caught at the wrong end of the stick or until an avoidable circumstance arises.I have learn’t to be happy with who iam and the posessions i have at the time,this does not mean in any way you have to rest on your laurels.

  166. What a refreshingly honest post. While I imagine select members of the Boyd family may not be thrilled with it, the narrative is exceedingly honest and authentic. Oh, and the use of some select colloquial language with terms like, “used to bum me out” and “get over the idea that life sucks for you” only increases the authenticity. Nicely done. Imagine…a REAL HUMAN BEING writing this “stuff.” And a nice probing of the general concept of “Any day above ground is a good day indeed.”

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