Oil magnate John D. Rockefeller once opined, “I do not think there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature.”

I’ll never forget watching the broadcast of The David Susskind Show some years ago. He had on three guests who were self-made millionaires, in their mid-30s. Each had averaged being in a dozen different businesses before hitting it big.

History abounds with such tales of perseverance. Theodore Geisel died in 1991 at the age of 87. Before he died, he wrote 47 books that have sold more than 100 million copies in 18 languages. What most people don’t know about Dr. Cat-In-the Hat Seuss is that he didn’t write his first book until he was 33 and it was rejected by 28 publishers before Vanguard Press picked it up.

The line between failure and success is so fine that we scarcely know when we pass it–so fine that we are often on the line itself and do not know it. How many people have thrown up their hands at a time when a little more effort, a little more patience would have achieved success?


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About the author Harvey Mackay

Seven-time, New York Times best-selling author of "Swim With The Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive," with two books among the top 15 inspirational business books of all time, according to the New York Times. He is one of America’s most popular and entertaining business speakers, and currently serves as Chairman at the MackayMitchell Envelope Company, one of the nation’s major envelope manufacturers, producing 25 million envelopes a day.

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