The upside of Failure


Failure is a beautiful thing.

How Failure can transform a man is one of the rarest wonders of our Human race.


Karoly Takacs was a soldier in the Hungarian army in 1936. He aspired to excel in pistol shooting. Over years of dedication of practice he had come to a point where he was the best shooter in the country and was about to compete for the next Olympics. The whole country was looking at him to bring them the Gold medal.


failure to successThen something unfortunate happened in 1938, during a random training exercise in the barracks, a hand grenade exploded in his right hand, taking away his most prized possession – his right hand ! Karoly was extremely disheartened and depressed. His whole life encircled around this hand, and all his dreams, aspirations and ambitions fell flat on the ground in a moment.



What was he to do? He had lost the only trained hand which he had put years of practice into. It was like he had lost all that he had earned over so many years. He could have delved into the depths of misery and hidden from the world.


But what did he do ? Instead he focussed on the one thing he had – his left hand. This was a hand which he could not even write with. While doctors were trying to recover him from his broken wounds his mind was still aspiring to be the best. As soon as he could come out of the hospital, he started his training again, this time with his untrained left hand. It was like a king losing all his riches and then starting to build them again.


In a year he was back on the range. In 1939 he competed for the National championship. His colleges were competing with many years of training while he was competing with the only hand he had. Karoly won the National Championship in 1939, bringing tears of joy and inspiration to many many people watching him that day.


But he was not satisfied. He was determined to make this hand which he had not only the best hand in Hungary, but the best hand in the world !! He started aiming for the 1940 Olympic games. He pooled in all his energy and focussed on his training again. But the 1940 Olympics got cancelled due to World War II. That did not dishearten him. He continued his training and focussed on the 1944 Olympic Games. After years of rigorous training he came to know that the 1944 Olympics are also going to get cancelled. But where one door closes, you push through it. He shifted his determination into the 1948 Olympic Games.


In 1948, he was 38 years old, and he was competing with the youth from all over the world. His age had taken a toll, but his spirit was high. He did not let any thought of defeat enter his mind. Failure was not an option now, he had something to prove.


The Man with the only hand Won the Gold medal in the Olympics of 1948. This was a Moment of inspiration for not only the people of Hungary, but that of the whole world. It opened the eyes of several people and showed them what the dedication and determination of a single man can achieve.


The story does not end there though. Karoly went on to win the 1952 Olympic Games too, changing the course of history. Never before or after that have one man won two consecutive Olympic Gold medals in Shooting.


What will happen if some one takes away all that you have earned over so many years. Be it wealth, health, relationships and love, anything that you hold dear in your life? What if you wake up one morning and all of this is gone.


The human mind is a strange place. We often do not realise the amount of potential, the amount of courage which it holds within. We think these tales of inspiration are for people from a different league. We excuse ourselves saying that we are not like them.


Every individual has a power bank within, and I am speaking from experience.  If you learn to trust yourself you will see that the setback you have faced in life is not a failure, it is simply an early attempt at success. You can turn back from anywhere you are and reach anywhere you want. You just have to want that enough. What wont happen in one attempt will happen in ten attempts.

As I said, you just have to ‘WANT” that enough.

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