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Summation: The Biggest Losers Win Big

Stashed in: #winning, motivation, career, Motivation

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Every elected U.S. President since Kennedy has lost a major election on their way to the top:

  • Lyndon Johnson - Lost his first battle for the U.S. Senate in 1941 
  • Richard Nixon - Lost his first race for the Presidency against Kennedy in 1960
  • Jimmy Carter - Ran for governor of Georgia in 1966 and lost
  • Ronald Reagan - Failed to win the Republican Presidential nomination in 1976 when he took on a sitting President Ford 
  • George H. W. Bush - Lost his race for Congress in 1964 and then lost his Senate seat in 1970
  • George W. Bush - Failed in his bid for congress in 1978 
  • Barak Obama - Took on a popular sitting congressman, Bobby Rush, in 2000 and got trounced in the Democratic primary

Bill Clinton lost his first reelection bid for Arkansas governor.  That loss was devastating for him.  But he quickly learned from his failure and adopted a new message, which put him back in the governor’s mansion two years later. He famously said that he “learned from defeat that you can't lead without listening.”

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