Steve Jobs… Success Lessons regarding Love and Loss

Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, provided excellent ‘tips for success’ and ‘food for thought’ during a commencement address at Stanford University, one of the world’s leading research and teaching institutions.

Jobs’ told his personal story regarding love and loss:

“I was lucky – I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parent’s garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4,000 employees. We had just released our finest creation – the Macintosh – a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired.”

Job’s did not know what to do for a number months. He felt that he had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down. He met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and apologized for screwing up so badly.

“I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me – I still loved what I did.The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love.  And so I decided to start over.”

During the next five years, Jobs started a company called NeXT, another company called Pixar, and he fell in love and married his wife. The rest is documented history! Pixar created the worlds first computer animated feature film called Toy Story. Pixar, which Jobs later sold to Disney, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world.

In an absolutely remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT.  The technology developed by NeXT became the heart of Apple’s renaissance… and Jobs found himself back at Apple.

“I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick.  Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did.  You’ve got to find what you love. And it is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work.  And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.  If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.  Don’t settle.  Keep looking until you find it.  Don’t settle.”

The next time life hits you in the head with a brick – and the bricks will surely come your way in the future – remember this powerful statement and success lesson from Steve Jobs:

“I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life!”

Loss in your life will happen.  Count on it… expect it… it will happen!  What to do about it?  Love what you do!  Don’t settle!

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I am a leader, speaker, and author who is passionate about Leadership Excellence and Achieiving Greater Success. I am the author of the books Be An Inspirational Leader(2016) and Presidential Leadership (2013), and deliver keynote presentations on those topics and several others.

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