The Fringe Benefits of Failure
In today’s edition of #FailureFriday, we’re excited to share with you J.K. Rowling’s hilarious and inspiring commencement speech for the 2008 class of Harvard undergraduates. The whole speech is fantastic so please try to watch it when you have a free chunk of time (21 minutes). Until then, we’ve isolated some of the best parts below:
You might never fail on the scale I did, but some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.
Failure gave me an inner security that I had never attained by passing examinations. Failure taught me things about myself that I could have learned no other way. I discovered that I had a strong will, and more discipline than I had suspected; I also found out that I had friends whose value was truly above the price of rubies.
The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive. You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity. Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won, and it has been worth more than any qualification I ever earned.”
Read the full text of this inspirational speech here.