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Picasso and Edison Proved Success is to Never Give Up

by Catherine DeAngelis

Many of life’s failures are for those of us who do not realize how close we are to success and so we give up. We are usually in the race close to the finish line, but we don’t make it, because emotions like fear or trepidation get in the way, and the trophy becomes worthy of a win for someone else and not for us.

Whatever success means to us, authors and motivational speakers often tell us what Edison was known for, that he proved that he did not fail; instead he found 10,000 ways that won’t work.

Picasso’s paintings from his noted “Blue Period” may be quite famous now, but they were not so at the time that he painted them. He was depressed, poor, even couldn’t afford to buy canvas. Picasso found the light to rise above it, and drew on paper, and it is claimed that he may have had to burn some of his canvasses to keep warm.

Edison loved what he did, and created what he thought the world needed. His inventions included the incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, and the motion picture camera, and over 1,000 other patented items.   He explained, “Through all the years of experimenting and research, I never once made a discovery. I start where the last man left off. … All my work was deductive, and the results I achieved were those of invention pure and simple.” (Makers of the Modern World, Untermeyer, p.227). 

Action is the Key to Success

Picasso believed that “action is the foundational key to all success.” In spite of what may have been termed as a psychological depression or blue period, Picasso was a man of empathy that enriched his art form. He chose subject matter that reflected this time, street drunks, beggars and prostitutes, or old and sick people, often the themes shown in his paintings.

Stand on the Shoulders of Giants

Perhaps Edison’s or Picasso’s wise words may have come from ingratiating the father of the laws of gravity, Sir Isaac Newton, who shared with the world, “If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”

Edison or Picasso may have found life to be difficult, but they became stupendous, either as businessmen or artists, they were creative, inventors at a space and time we are now fortunate to talk and learn about. They dominated the world with a love for their work, and wanted to share it with others. They dared to step outside of society’s restrictive confines of imagination, and went beyond human expectations.

We have plenty to learn from people who have travelled the road to success. We need to dig deep, research and explore so that we may find our mentors, maybe 2 or 3 or among the millions of influential advocates who have been written about ready to raise us up.

What provokes us to be motivated to get beyond our fear? We can ask, “What is it I need to do to help my self-worth, get me back onto the boat that leads me out of the dark waters and onto the horizon of never giving up?  I need to keep on going further — I owe it to myself.”

Find Your Voice!
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contact Catherine DeAngelis at
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