Success

Well, I’m always so reluctant to give advice because the single most important thing about success is that everybody’s pathway is so different. I hate the idea that everybody has to march in line for that one thing… that there is only one way to get there. It feels inauthentic. If I had to give one piece of advice, it’s that you have to be really comfortable with failing. Because the only possibility of reaching whatever success means for you, will require taking risks. Sometimes those risks are going to pay off and be great, and other times they are going to be really spectacularly painful, and sometimes public failures. And also sometimes, you’ll have to deal with lots of criticism from people that you care about. It can be hard to take those really, really tough hits. You can’t always take it as, ‘oh, they’re just haters and I don’t even care’, you have to actually take them and listen to them. ‘Cause sometimes, even when somebody is hating, they’re right. It’s completely plausible that they’re hating and 50% of what they’re saying is absolutely accurate. So you have to learn to be comfortable with your own imperfections and try to figure out how to take the useful criticisms even out of the things that seem like they’re hateful.

Melissa Harris Perry

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