Let’s face it: Setbacks happen, and failure is always a possibility. But here’s the good news: Amazing success has been achieved by people who once fell flat on their faces. The secret lies in how we respond to life’s bumps and pot holes and unwelcome detours—from getting fired or losing a business to enduring a professional rejection or pursuing a passion that fails to pan out. Misfortune, it turns out, can be a springboard to success.
In Rebounders, U.S. News & World Report journalist Rick Newman examines the rise and fall—and rise again—of some of our most prolific and productive figures in order to demystify the anatomy of resilience. He identifies nine key traits found in people who bounce back that can transform a setback into the first step toward great accomplishment. Newman turns many well-worn axioms on their head as he shows how virtually anybody can improve their resilience and get better at turning adversity into personal and professional achievement.
• Setbacks can be a secret weapon: They often teach vital things you’ll never learn in school, on the job, or from others.
• There are smart ways to fail: Once familiar with them, you’ll be more comfortable taking risks and less discouraged if they don’t pan out.
• “Defensive pessimism” trumps optimism: Planning for what could go wrong is often the best way to ensure that it doesn’t.
• Know when to quit: Walking away at the right time can free the resources you need to exploit better opportunities.
• “Own the suck”: When faced with true hardship, taking command of the pain and sorrow—rather than letting it command you—lays the groundwork for ultimately rising above it.
Each lesson is highlighted by candid and inspiring stories from notable people, including musician Lucinda Williams, tennis champ James Blake, inventor Thomas Edison, army veteran and double-amputee Tammy Duckworth, and Joe Torre, former manager of the New York Yankees.
In this uncertain and unstable time, Rebounders lays out the new rules for success and equips you with the tools you need to get ahead and thrive.
Through a series of unfortunate setbacks and questionable decisions, business journalist Newman (coauthor of Firefight: Inside the Battle to Save the Pentagon on 9/11) was at a crossroads as he entered middle age and decided to research the concept of failure. What he found proved to be rich fodder for this insightful look at how setbacks can actually be a springboard to success and how certain personality traits allow individuals to rebound from adversity. Newman draws on the lives and experiences of noteworthy businesspeople, innovators, and artists, including Ben Franklin, who as a young man faced numerous financial obstacles, and Thomas Edison, who overcame deafness, failed experiments, and economic difficulties to become one of the greatest inventors of our time. He also examines the lives of contemporary rebounders like Tim Westergren, the eventually successful founder and CEO of radio juggernaut Pandora; Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter Lucinda Williams, who struggled for decades before achieving artistic renown; and Jack Bogle, who suffered a rough childhood and an unceremonious firing from a prestigious CEO job before founding the legendary Vanguard Group. This engaging work is sure to inspire readers to view adversity and failure from a new perspective, much as Bogle did when he said, "I have come to regard failure as another essential of leadership."